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Hurricanes edge Wildcats on walk-off wild pitch for 1-0 victory

Posted: May 31, 2014 - 12:13am
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. — With Montana Durapau on the mound, No. 4 seed Bethune-Cookman liked its chances against top seed Miami in the NCAA Coral Gables Regional.

Durapau showed why, tossing seven shutout innings and holding the Hurricanes to just three hits and four walks with five strikeouts. But it wasn’t enough to give the Wildcats the win.

David Thompson scored on a two-out wild pitch by Bethune-Cookman reliever Scott Garner in the bottom of the ninth, and the Hurricanes survived for a 1-0 victory Friday night at Mark Light Field.

“I don’t know about Durapau but he can’t be any better,” Miami coach Jim Morris said. “He’s pitched good against us his whole career — thank goodness he’s a senior — so we knew it was going to be a tough outing because he’s beaten us twice before.

“But just a great win for us, huge win. Find a way to win in some way and that’s a crazy way to win it.”

Miami (42-17) advances to the winners’ bracket to face No. 2 seed Texas Tech, a 3-2 winner over Columbia earlier in the day, at 6 p.m. CT. Morris said all-American left-hander Chris Diaz (9-0, 2.31 ERA) will get the start against the Red Raiders.

Bethune-Cookman (26-32) faces the Lions in an elimination game at 1 p.m. CT.

With one out, Thompson was hit by a pitch from Garner, and Brandon Lopez singled to second one out later. On the hit, however, Wildcats right fielder Jacob Heyward bobbled the ball, allowing Thompson to take third.

Garner then uncorked a wild pitch that squirted through the legs of catcher Zach Olszewski, and Thompson beat the throw to Garner covering to send the Hurricanes to victory.

“No question they’re disappointed, and rightly so,” Bethune-Cookman coach Jason Beverlin said. “But we’re definitely not disappointed in the way we played and I told them to play that way (Saturday). That’s the way we want to play. We just didn’t get the big hit when we needed it.”

The Wildcats had the best chances to score early in the game. B-C got two on with two outs in the first on a hit batter and a single by Matt Noble. But Miami starter Andrew Suarez (6-3) came back with a strikeout of Jordan Robinson to end the inning.

Back-to-back one-out singles by Eros Modena and Shaun McCarty also went for naught as Suarez got Zach Olszewski to hit into an inning-ending double play.

The Wildcats also stranded a leadoff walk in the third and a two-out double in the seventh against Suarez, who scattered seven hits while striking out a career-high 10 in the complete-game effort.

NCAA CORAL GABLES REGIONAL

at Mark Light Field, Coral Gables, Fla.

MIAMI 1, BETHUNE-COOKMAN 0

Bethune-Cookman 000 000 000 — 0 7 1

Miami 000 000 001 — 1 4 0

Durapau, Garner and Olszewski; Suarez and Collins. W — Suarez (6-3). L — Garner (1-4). 2B — Bethune-Cookman, McCarty. Records: Bethune-Cookman 26-32; Miami 42-17.

george.watson@lubbockonline.com

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