June 06, 2010 — Coral Gables — The top-seeded University of Miami baseball team suffered its first loss of the Coral Gables Regional, falling 11-7 to No. 2 seed Texas A&M Sunday afternoon at Alex Rodriguez Park. The Hurricanes and Aggies will decide the regional championship Monday night at 7 p.m. on ESPNU.
The Hurricanes (42-18) continued their power surge with four home runs, but Texas A&M (43-20-1) rallied in the middle innings and eventually held on for the comfortable four-run win.
Nathan Melendres, Michael Broad, and Harold Martinez all went deep for the `Canes, who have now hit 13 home runs in three regional games. Melendres was the star in a losing effort, recording his first career two-homer game that included Miami's first inside the park home run since Paco Figueroa accomplished the feat against Jacksonville on May 8, 2005. He finished the night 3-for-5 with two RBI.
Broad went 3-for-5 on the day as he and Melendres scored two runs apiece. Martinez's homer - a three-run blast in the first - was his 21st of the season, which is tied for the sixth most all-time in a single-season in school history.
David Gutierrez (5-2) took the loss for the Miami, going five innings and allowing five earned runs on seven hits. He pitched three shutout innings to start the game, but allowed A&M to plate three runs in both the fourth and fifth innings. From there, E.J. Encinosa allowed four in just a third of an inning before Jason Santana held the Aggies to just one run on two hits over the final 3 2/3 innings.
Michael Wacha (9-2) earned the win despite allowing seven earned runs in 5 2/3 innings for Texas A&M. Closer John Stilson tossed 3 2/3 scoreless innings to earn his 10th save of the season.
Matt Juengel led the Aggies at the plate, going 3-for-5 with a homer, a double, four RBI and two runs scored. Brodie Greene (2-for-4, three runs) also had a big night at the plate for Texas A&M.
For the third straight game, Miami homered in the first inning to gain the early lead. Singles by Scott Lawson and Yasmani Grandal put runners on the corners and with one out on the board for Martinez, who blasted a towering homer to left to give the `Canes a 3-0 lead.
The Aggies tied the game up in the fourth with a RBI single by Juengel and a two-run blast to left by Adam Smith.
Miami took a 5-3 lead in the bottom of the fourth on back-to-back homers by Melendres and Broad. Melendres, who had just injured his knee in the field a half inning earlier, fought through pain for the inside-the-park home run after A&M centerfielder Andrew Collazo slammed into the wall on his deep shot to center. Broad quickly put the `Canes up two when he followed up Melendres' round-tripper with an opposite field blast to right-center.
Just as they had an inning prior, the Aggies responded with three more runs to take a 6-5 lead. The first two runs in the frame came across on a double to right-center by Joe Patterson before he scored on another double by Juengel.
The Aggies broke the game open in the sixth, scoring five runs to take an 11-5 lead. A Tyler Naquin single started the scoring in the inning, while a UM throwing error on the play allowed another run to score to give Texas A&M a three-run lead. After an RBI grounder scored another, Juengel hit a two-run shot to left to give the Aggies a six-run advantage.
Melendres smacked his second homer on the first pitch of the bottom of the sixth, hitting a line-shot over the wall in left. Michael Broad followed that up with a double to right-center and two batters later, scored on a single to left by Ratcliff.
The scoring ended there however, as Stilson shut the door over the final 3 2/3 innings to force the deciding game on Monday.
The winner of Monday night's game will advance into the Super Regional round of the NCAA Tournament and will face the winner of the Gainesville Regional next weekend.
For a complete recap, and more information regarding UM baseball, visit Hurricanesports.com.
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