CORAL GABLES, Fla. – Hunter Scantling, Brian Busch and Daniel Bennett combined on a five-hit shutout at No. 8 Florida State secured its regular season series with a 2-0 victory over No. 14 Saturday night before a record crowd of 4,634 at Alex Rodriguez Park at Mark Light Field.
Backed by a flawless defensive effort, the host Hurricanes were unable to even the series against the trio. Miami stranded 11 baserunners. It was FSU’s first shutout win over Miami since a 12-0 victory on April 27, 2003 in Tallahassee and the first on the Hurricanes’ home field since April 23, 1993 (1-0).
Florida State (33-10, 16-7 ACC) not only extended its season-best winning streak to nine games, but opened up a four-game lead over second place Clemson in the ACC Atlantic Division with six league games remaining.
One night after Miami (28-15, 15-7) committed a season-high seven errors, the Hurricanes’ defense also lent a hand to the Seminoles. FSU broke open a scoreless game in the top of the fifth when Justin Gonzalez led off with a single and scored from first when Devon Travis’ two-out single to right scooted past Dale Carey. The ‘Noles padded the lead with a run in the seventh. Rafael Lopez (2-for-4) led off with a double and scored on senior Parker Brunelle’s RBI double into the right field corner for a 2-0 cushion.
Busch (3-1) earned the win with 3.1 innings of two-hit work, following another solid start by Scantling, who limited the ‘Canes to two hits over 4.1 innings. Bennett worked 1.1 innings and finished off his seventh save when Stephen Perez grounded back to the mound for the final out with runners at first and second.
The Seminoles will send Mike McGee to the mound for Sunday’s series finale as FSU takes aim at its first three-game sweep of the Hurricanes on their home field since 2002.