Early offense from FSU proves too much as Seminoles sweep Miami, taking game three 6-4

Freshman pitcher Brandon Olivera loads up to release a four-seam fastball while relieving against the Owls at Mark Light Field on April 9, 2024. Photo credit: Trevor Castleman

After dropping the first two games against the No. 10-ranked Florida State Seminoles, the Miami Hurricanes desperately needed a win on Saturday. Unfortunately for them, the FSU offense struck quickly, scoring five runs in the first three innings and mounting a big enough lead that the ’Canes could not overcome.

After UM struck first in the top half of the first inning, FSU immediately responded and took the lead by scoring two in the bottom half.

Max Williams and Cam Smith got things going for FSU, leading the game off with back-to-back doubles. Smith later came in to score on an RBI groundout by Jaime Ferrer, putting Florida State up 2-1.

Both offenses continued to threaten early, as in response to FSU’s bottom of the first, Miami tied the game right back up with a Jacoby Long RBI single to drive in Jack Scanlon.

Shortly after, in the bottom of the third, is when FSU pulled away and never looked back. Williams and Smith came up big again, as Williams hit an RBI double, followed up by a Smith home run to drive him in and extend the Seminole lead up to three.

UM starter Herick Hernandez did not have his best stuff at all on Saturday afternoon. Hernandez, who led Miami’s pitchers in strikeouts coming into this weekend, was only able to log three punchouts, indicating that he was not on his game.

Hernandez was only able to last four innings, giving up five hits, three walks and five runs, which pushed his season ERA up to 6.39.

After Hernandez was pulled, the Hurricanes’ pitching seemed to settle in. The rest of the game was pitched by Myles Caba and Nick Robert, who combined to throw four innings and only give up one run, really giving Miami’s offense a chance to make a late comeback.

In the ninth inning, Miami was able to send the tying run up to the plate, and after Dorian Gonzalez Jr. singled up the middle to cut the lead to just two, Lorenzo Carrier stood at the plate, representing the go-ahead run.

The comeback effort fell short, as Carrier lined out to the shortstop to end the game.

Overall, it was not UM’s best day at the plate, as it slashed .250 as a team, making it almost impossible to beat an FSU team that scores over nine runs a game.

A big reason for the lack of offensive production on Saturday can be attributed to stars Daniel Cuvet and Jason Torres, who combined to go 0-of-8 and usually carry the load on offense.

Gonzalez and Long were the only Hurricanes with multiple hits, as Long went 2-of-4 with a walk, and Gonzalez went 3-of-5 with two RBIs.

After getting swept in back-to-back conference series, next weekend’s home series against Louisville will be a huge bounce-back opportunity for Miami, which is looking to get back on track before it gets too late in the season.

Before that, the ’Canes will take on Bethune-Cookman on Wednesday at 6 p.m. at Mark Light Field. Likely manning the mound for UM on Wednesday will be Ashton Crowther, who is looking to follow up a solid start against FAU last week.