March 25, 2018
BOCA RATON, Fla. - Florida Atlantic University baseball lost their first series at home in the 2018 season with Sunday's 14-3 win by No. 14 Southern Miss giving the visiting Golden Eagles a 2-1 edge in the set.
"We were pitching from behind all day and they made us pay," said Head Coach John McCormack. "They were locked in and ready to go. It all starts on the mound, and I don't think we did a good job. We were fortunate to get out of the first and second with double plays, we had let some runners on base, and then in the third, Wallner took a really good two-strike pitch and then ending up hitting one out. They deserve it, they beat us."
The Turning Point
In the Southern Miss (17-5, 4-1 Conference USA) third, back-to-back doubles plated the game's first run, and FAU (17-7, 3-3 C-USA) starter Vince Coletti got a flyout for the second out of the inning. But a walk and a single extended the frame, and Matt Wallner came through with a grand slam for a 5-0 lead.
The Golden Eagles added one more in the fourth and three in the fifth. Leading 11-1 after the top of the eighth, FAU managed to get two in in the home half, with RBI singles by David Miranda and Pedro Pages forcing the ninth. USM got three more in their final at-bat for the final score.
- Miranda and Pages each had three hits, and one RBI
- The other RBI, his team-leading 22nd, came on a sacrifice fly by Eric Rivera in the fourth
- Tyler Frank reached on an infield single in the ninth and now has a 19-game hitting streak
- Similarly, Miranda has a hit in seven straight games, and has reached safely in 12 in a row
- Frank's streak ties the longest in the McCormack era, matching C.J. Chatham (2015), Travis Ozga (2009) and Brendon Sanger (2015). The program record is 24 straight by Kevin Connacher in 1994
- Coletti took the loss to drop to 1-2 this year
- Having his longest stint of his career, and a very successful one, was Mike Ruff. He pitched 2 2/3 hitless innings, allowing just one runner to reach (on a hit-by-pitch) with three strikeouts
The Owls are on the road for the first of five straight, this Tuesday. They travel to Daytona Beach to take on Bethune-Cookman at 4 p.m. that night, and then go back to conference play with a three-game set in Charleston, West Virginia, facing Marshall beginning the following Friday.