Coral Gables, Fla. - After a season-opening sweep over Morehead State last weekend, the Diamond Vols (4-2) lost two of three to the 3rd-ranked Miami Hurricanes this weekend.
The Volunteers were beaten by the long ball Friday night, as back-to-back home runs by Paco Figueroa and Joey Hooft with one out in the bottom of the ninth lifted the Hurricanes to a dramatic 8-7 victory in the first of the three games at Mark Light Stadium.
Eli Iorg went 3-for-5 to pace the 12-hit Tennessee attack, while Chase Headley slugged his first home run as a Vol.
Cesar Carrillo (1-0), the third Miami pitcher of the night, earned the win in two innings of relief.
Saturday, Michael Rivera's only hit of the night proved to be difference, as his run-scoring double in the eighth inning snapped an 11-11 tie, propelling the Vols to a grueling 14-11 victory.
Josh Alley's two-run double capped the inning as Tennessee grabbed its biggest lead of the night. UT had to battle from behind all night, trailing 6-2 after two and 10-5 after five before taking their first lead of the game after erupting for six runs in the sixth.
Craig Cobb (1-0) picked up the win in 3.2 innings of relief, as both teams combined for 25 runs on 23 hits with 16 walks and six errors. The game was the second longest in the history of the series, lasting four hours and eight minutes, just shy of the four hour, 21-minute marathon at the 2001 College World Series.
Alex Blanco (0-1), the fifth of six Miami pitchers, took the loss.
Tennessee erupted for six runs in the sixth, taking an 11-10 lead. Eric King and Eli Iorg started the rally with back-to-back RBI doubles, followed by a run-scoring balk and sacrifice fly, before Alex Suarez put the Vols ahead with a two-run double to left.
The lead was short-lived as Sanchez' singled home Jim Burt to tie the game at 11.
Sunday, the Hurricanes' Jim Burt drove in three runs with a double and a triple, and Miami parlayed eight Tennessee errors in a 14-3 victory.
The eight miscues set a Tennessee record.
Brandon Camardese (1-0) pitched six solid innings, limiting Tennessee to two runs on six hits, for his first victory.
Sean Watson (0-1), making his first career start in front of his hometown fans, suffered the loss, as he was roughed up for 10 runs (three earned) on eight hits in 4 .2 innings. He struck out four and walked four.
Eric King led the Vols with two hits, including an RBI single in the ninth.
Four Vol errors in the fifth opened the flood gates as the Hurricanes sent 11 men to the plate, scoring six unearned runs and grabbing a 10-2 lead.
Tennessee returns home for a 13-game homestand, beginning with a three-game series against Eastern Michigan starting Friday.