Today’s game pitted a pair of team who had won their first game in the ACCT, Maryland and Florida State. In order to advance to Sunday’s Championship game Maryland would have to win today and have one of two other things happen: either UNC loses tonight to Virginia or Maryland defeats UNC tomorrow. The Terrapins sent out freshman sensation Mike Shawaryn (9 – 3, 2.96 ERA) to face RHP Michael Compton (7 – 1, 3.08 ERA) for the Seminoles. Each pitcher had won in their respective starts in the Maryland-FSU series earlier in the 2014 season. Compton had a great freshman year but had to undergo Tommy John surgery last year. He has an unusual delivery, where it looks like he almost slings the ball. Effective nevertheless.
As was the case yesterday, today’s game started at 11:00 AM.
Terps score four in the third to lead 4 - 0
With two outs in the bottom of the first Brandon Lowe tripled off the fence in right center field. But Jose Cuas fanned to end the inning. In the next inning Maryland got another two out extra-base hit. Nick Cieri doubled down the right field line. But Compton got Anthony Papio to line out to right.
Shawaryn had retired the first nine Seminole batters, with only one ball leaving the infield. In the bottom of the third Kevin Martir hit a grounder to short and the throw was errant. Charlie White squared to bunt and was HBP. LaMonte Wade sacrificed the runners to second and third. FSU intentionally walked Lowe to load the bases. Big mistake, as Cuas lined the first pitch for a double. The Terps were on top 2 – 0. The Seminoles brought in their infield, but Blake Schmit poked a grounder through the hole at short. It was incredibly scored an error rather than a hit. Regardless a run scored. Tim Lewis lined a single to center for the fourth Terp run of the inning. Two ground outs finished up the inning.
Shawaryn continues to baffle the ‘Noles
How would Shawaryn pitch after being staked to a nice lead? Well, by retiring the side in order for the fourth straight inning. In the fifth Shawaryn registered two quick outs. Ben Deluzio hit a grounder deep in the hole that Schmit was able to back-hand, but the throw was just late. John Sansone popped out, and Shawaryn had hurled five shutout innings.
Cuas opened the Terps’ fifth by singling to left. Schmit hit a sharp grounder that the shortstop grabbed, but could only get the lead runner. Lewis grounded into a double play and the score remained 4 – 0.
In the top of the sixth Justin Gonzales became Shawaryn’s fourth strike out victim. Danny De La Calle worked the first Seminole walk of the game. Josh Delph singled through the right side, and the Seminoles had a man in scoring position for the first time today. Casey Smit struck out, then DJ Stewart hit a grounder through the box that Schmit bobbled for a second (ruled an error): the bases were loaded for John Nogowski, who represented the tying run. On a 0 – 1 pitch Nogowski hit a popup to shallow left that Schmit snared to end the FSU threat.
After two were gone in the Terps’ sixth Martir lined a shot that Brizuela made a leaping catch on to rob Martir of a home run.
John Sansone drew a two-out walk. A passed ball sent him to second. Gonzales drew a walk, putting two runners aboard. Coach Belanger paid a visit to the mound, and elected to keep Shawaryn in. That move paid off as Shawaryn got DeLuzio to sky out to Papio. Shawaryn’s pitch count was 116.
In the bottom of the seventh Wade got a one-out walk. Lowe lined one to left that Stewart dove and couldn’t make the catch. That finished Compton, who left with Terrapin runners on second and third. LHP Dylan Silva came on in relief. It was a curious move considering the next batter was Jose Cuas. On a 2 – 1 pitch Cuas hit a liner to right that score Wade; Lowe moved over to third. Schmit grounded out. After seven innings the Terps led 5 – 0.
Florida State rallies for three runs in the eighth
Ben Brewster took the mound for the Terps in the top of the eighth. Shawaryn’s line: seven innings, no runs, two hits, two walks, and six strike outs. Delph walked to start things off. Bobby Ruse relieved Brewster. Smit hit a bouncer through the right side for a single. Stewart walked to load the bases with nobody out. Ruse uncorked a wild pitch that brought in the first FSU run. Nogowski singled to right to cut the lead to 5 – 2, bringing the tying run to the plate. In came Kevin Mooney to try to thwart the Seminole comeback. Brizuela struck out. A wild pitch brought Stewart home and sent Nogowski to second. DeLuzio walked, the third Seminole to receive a free pass this inning. After running the count full Mooney fanned Sansone. Then Gonzales looked at a called strike three to stop the bleeding.
In the bottom of the eighth Lewis drew a lead-off walk. Krysthian Leal pinch hit for Cieri. Leal tried to sacrifice but didn’t succeed, striking out on a failed bunt attempt. With Papio up Silva threw wild on a pick-off attempt and Lewis scooted to second. Papio fanned for the second out. As did Martir to strand Lewis.
Can Mooney save the Terps?
So we went to the ninth with Maryland clutching on to a 5 – 3 lead. Mooney continued to pitch for the Terps. The first batter grounded out to Wade. Mooney fell behind Delph 3 – 0 before battling back to gt him to ground out. Smit lined out to Papio and the Terps won 5 – 3.
Mike Shawaryn got the win to go 10 - 3, the most wins for any ACC pitcher this season. Kevin Mooney got his 11th save. It was the Terps' 11th straight victory to move to 36 - 19 on the season. If Virginia wins tonight or the Terps beat UNC tomorrow then Maryland will play in the ACC title game on Sunday.