Senior Javi Salas pitched the game of his life against Villanova, retiring all 27 batters he faced on 113 pitches to record just the second perfect game in Miami history as the No. 16 Hurricanes defeated the visiting Wildcats 17-0.
“I don't even know what to think,” Salas told HurricaneSports.com after the game. “In that last inning, I was trying to keep my adrenaline down. The fans were getting up, and I couldn't believe it. It's a dream come true.”
Salas’s perfect game was the first since Kevin Sheary threw one on March 15, 1987. It was also just the 23rd perfect game in Division I baseball history.
Miami (6-5) bounced back after losing two of three to No. 2 Florida State in Tallahassee over the weekend. The Hurricanes knocked Villanova pitching around for 12 hits and scored in every inning after putting up zero runs in the first.
“That's the only reason I showed up today - to get our team back on track,” Salas said. “I didn't care how it happened or what the score was, we really needed to win. I think it all came together tonight. We played great defense, we hit the ball, and we got a little luck with pitching.”
Head coach Jim Morris couldn’t help but use the word perfect after the game either.
“He's our captain, one of our hardest workers and a leader by example,” Morris told HurricaneSports.com. “He's a pre-law student. He's everything. He is a perfect student-athlete.”
While Salas couldn’t be hit the Hurricanes couldn’t stop hitting. Or scoring for that matter.
Miami took a 4-0 lead in the third inning on Willie Abreu’s two-RBI single and never looked back. The offense blew the doors open in the sixth with five runs that included Brad Fieger’s first home run of the season, one of his two hits for the game.
David Thompson drove in two more runs with a double to left field in the sixth and Miami led 13-0 by the end of the inning. Freshman Zach Collins added three more runs with a double in the seventh as the Hurricanes increased their lead to 16-0.
Miami will face Villanova again tomorrow night at 6 PM before it opens ACC play against Boston College on Friday.