April 10, 2011
Box Score (PDF)
CORAL GABLES, FLA. — An eight-run eighth inning and Chris Diaz’s ninth-inning RBI double helped NC State wipe out a nine-run deficit to force extra innings, but Miami prevailed in the 10th on David Villasuso’s walk-off single to center to claim a 14-13 win Saturday at Mark Light Field at Alex Rodriguez Park.
Andrew Ciencin went 3-for-6 for the Wolfpack and notched two of his hits, including his fourth home run of the year, in the Pack’s epic eighth. Ciencin finished with two RBIs and three runs scored.
The eight-run inning was NC State’s biggest of the season and its largest since an 11-run second inning last April 7 in an 18-1 rout of Coppin State.
Pratt Maynard delivered a 4-for-6 performance that included two RBIs and a double. Maynard tied his career high for hits in a game, set in his third college game back in 2009. Dylan Brown and Matt Bergquist also notched two RBIs apiece during the NC State comeback, Brown on a single and a walk and Bergquist on a sacrifice fly and a groundout.
Brett Williams scored three runs for the Pack, including the tying run in the ninth after legging out a triple with two down and the bases empty.
Trailing 13-4, Ciencin led off the eighth with a single. The Pack then drew five straight free passes on four walks and a hit batter to bring three runs across the plate. John Gianis and Bergquist drove in one run each with groundouts. With two out, Maynard kept the inning alive with his second RBI of the night on a single to left field, bringing Ciencin to the plate for the second time in the inning. Ciencin smashed a tape-measure homer to left field, driving in two runs and trimming what looked like an insurmountable Hurricane lead to 13-12, on only two hits.
In the ninth, Brett Williams stretched a two-out gapper into a triple to keep the Wolfpack’s hopes alive. NC State shortstop and Miami native Chris Diaz laced a line drive just over the mitt of leaping Hurricane first baseman Rony Rodriguez for an RBI double to tie the game at 13-13.
After all that sweat, the situation turned bleak rapidly for the visiting Wolfpack and closer Chris Overman. Zeke DeVoss led off the bottom of the ninth with a single to right. Chantz Mack pushed the lead runner to second after being hit by a pitch. Nathan Melendres laid down a sacrifice bunt that catcher Chris Schaeffer mishandled, loading the bases with no outs.
From there, it was Overman’s chance to add his own name to the Pack’s growing checklist of heroes. With no place to put another runner, Overman struck out Harold Martinez and Rodriguez, the cleanup and No. 5 hitter in the Miami lineup, then induced a fly ball to right from Brad Fieger to send the battle into the 10th.
Cade Kreuter led off the bottom of the 10th for the Hurricanes with a double to the corner in right, pressing NC State back against the wall one final time. Kreuter advanced to third on Dale Carey’s sacrifice, and backup catcher David Villasuso finally put an end to the instant classic with a deep fly past the outstretched glove of center fielder Brett Williams, playing in for a chance to gun Kreuter at the plate. Kreuter’s run gave the
Overman (5-1), who pulled the Houdini act in the ninth, took the loss after going 1 1/3 innings and allowing three hits and one run with two strikeouts. Rey Cotilla delivered 1 1/3 innings of no-hit relief during the eighth and ninth.
Miami closer Daniel Miranda (2-1) blew the save but picked up the win over the final 2 1/3 innings, holding the Pack to a run on two hits, striking out five.
Starting pitchers Vance Williams and Eric Whaley cruised through the first two innings, surrendering only one baserunner each, before NC State landed the first punch in the third to snatch a 2-0 lead. Williams led off with a single to left, the second Wolfpack hit of the game, and Diaz’s sacrifice bunt was so good that he beat it out for an infield single. Williams never slowed down as he rounded second, making it to third on the throw across the diamond.
With runners on the corners and one out, Bergquist popped foul toward the Miami dugout. Miami first baseman Rodriguez corralled the pop-up while navigating the dugout steps, allowing Williams to tag and score. Diaz also advanced on the play, allowing Maynard to drive him in with a single to right on the next play.
The Hurricanes answered immediately in the bottom of the third, batting around to take a 4-2 lead. With two out and runners on second and third via walks, Mack chopped a grounder to third. The ball slipped by Ciencin’s glove, pushing the first run across for Miami. The Canes scored three more unearned runs on two walks and two singles.
In the fourth, Miami extended the lead to five on RBI singles from DeVoss and Harold Martinez and an RBI double by Mack. The fifth inning saw two more runs tacked on to the lead as Brad Fieger, Chris Pelaez, and Dale Carey led off with back-to-back-to-back singles. Shane Rowland’s sac fly to center scored one run, and a double steal by Carey and Pelaez added the second to make it a 9-2 advantage for Miami.
NC State responded with two runs in the sixth. Maynard led off with a single to right, and Ciencin followed suit by ripping a double into the right-field corner. Danny Canela banked the first runner with a sacrifice fly to right. Brown lobbed a two out pinch-single into left to close the gap to 9-4.
Miami scored four more in the seventh, helped by a costly throwing error from right that plated the first run and advanced a runner from first to third with one out. An RBI single from Martinez, and a two-run double by Rodriguez pushed the lead to 13-4, setting the stage for the wild finish.
NC State and Miami will play the final game in this three-game series Sunday at 1 p.m. The game will be broadcast live on WKNC-FM (88.1) and will be available on-line on GoPack.com’s All-Access package. Live stats will be available on Gametracker. Just click the Gametracker icon on the baseball schedule page on GoPack.com.
As always, please visit GoPack.com regularly for full coverage of all NC State athletics news and events.