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Maryland baseball: #13 Tar Heels thwart #46 Terps' comeback to win 9 - 4

The Tar Heels took advantage of early Terps miscues to win 9 - 4 and take the series. After being down by five early the Terps batted back to cut the lead to one. But a damaging four run ninth put the game away for the Tar Heels.

Maryland baseball is a team on the move
Maryland baseball is a team on the move
Photo courtesy of Hannah Evans @tothehevans07

Tar Heels grab an early lead on Terps' miscues

Landon Lassiter started things off in the first inning with a walk. Wood Myers followed that with a single through the middle. A passed ball sent runners to second and third. After getting the next two batters on a strike out and a pop-out it looked like Mooney would get out of the inning unscathed. But Skye Bolt hit a single to center that scored both runners. In the Tar Heels' second inning things seemed to be going better for Mooney. But with two outs he gave up two consecutive walks. Wood Myers hit a nubber that Mooney couldn't pick up and the bases were loaded. That was a critical play as Michael Russell drove a single to center and the Tar Heels were up 4 - 0. Mooney had Russell picked off but LaMonte Wades's throw to second was off track and went into center field, scoring another Tar Heels run. The Tar Heels had scored five runs on only three hits.

Zach Morris came in for Mooney in the top of the third and allowed only an infield single.

Other than a solid single by Antony Papio and a bunt hit by Jose Cuas the Terps' couldn't get anything going in the first three innings. Gallen's off-speed pitch was particularly effective.

Terps get on the board

Wade started off with the Terps' fourth inning by laying down a bunt single. Kyle Convissar flied out, and Martir grounded out with Wade moving to second. On a 3 - 1 pitch Papio smoked a single past the Tar Heel's first baseman and Wade scored. Papio was thrown out on a delayed steal.

In the Terps' half of the fifth Blake Schmit hit a single through the middle but he was gunned down trying to steal second. That was important as Andrew Amaro subsequently walked. But he was thrown out trying to steal: that was three straight outs on runners thrown out by Korey Dunbar. Cuas struck out to end the inning.

Zach Morris pitched well in relief. He did not allow a run in four innings, keeping the Terps in the game.

The Terps claw back

Amaro got aboard on a grounder in which the throw to first was dropped by Gallen. Charlie White hit a shot to center for a double.Wadw singled through the middle, bringing home both runners. Wade went to second on the throw home. Covissar grounded back to Gallen, who caught Wade in a rundown. In the rundown Co vissar was able to get to second base. Kevin Martir struck out. With Papio due up Gallen was reieved by left hander Zach Rice. It was Rice who took the loss yesterday. He walked Papio, which was his only batter. In to pitch was Reilly Hovis, who was effective Friday night. Schmt flew out but the Terps now trailed by only two runs: 5 - 3.

Jared Price came in to pitch for he Terps in the seventh.Russell smoked a shot that Leal made a diving play on; the throw just missed getting Russell. Ben Brewster relieved Price. Ramirez bunted Rusell over to second. Bolt grounded out to second with Russell going over to third. Pinch hitter Alex Raburn walked and stole second base. But Parks Jordan was caught looking and the game was still tight.

With one out pinch hitter Mike Recsigno walked. That brought in UNC's closer, Chris McCue. The junior right hander was the set-up man last year for the Tar Heels. This season he's been six for six in save opportunities, and has not allowed a run. Leal hit a single to right. Charlie White flied out to center. With Wade up a wild pitch advanced both runners binto scoring position. But McCue got Wade swinging on a 3 - 2 change up.

Can the Terps rally for the win?

The Tar Heels were held scoreless in the eight.

In the bottom of the eighth Convissar got things going by drilling an 0 - 2 pitch to right for a single. Convissar mved up to second on a wild pitch. Martir singled to left and the Terps now trailed by a single run. Papio bunted and there was no play on it: runners were on first and second with no outs. Schmit sacrificed both runners over to scoring position. But McCue got Amaro swinging for the second out after Amaro failed earlier to execute the suicide squeeze, Rescigno flied out to end the inning. 

Alex Robinson got the first out in the ninth,. Russell hit a liner that Papio dove for and couldn't reach. Russell ran all the way to third for a triple. Ramirez walked and swiped second. Bolt hit a grounder off of Rescigno's chest that went for an error. Rayburn walked, loading the bases with one out. Jordan executed the safety squeeze that brought home the second run of the inning. Dunbar hit an opposite field double and the Tar Heels were back up by five. Dudek walked, which brought on Bobby Ruse. Lassiter flied out to end the Tar Heels' ninth.

With two outs in the ninth Wade singled. He got to second on a wild pitch. Convissar walked. But Martir struck out to end the game.

Mooney took the loss to go 0 - 1. Gallen was the winner to improve to 2 - 1.McCue got his seventh save of the year.