Baseball: Owls sneak past #22 Miami 6-5

Nolan Schanuel and Jackson Ross combined for three homers as FAU took down the Hurricanes 6-5.


Eston Parker III

Nolan Schanuel (center) celebrates with his teammates after securing the lead against UCF on April 5, 2022.

Cameron Priester, Sports Editor

FAU Baseball (7-1) weathered the storm Tuesday night, taking down the #22 University of Miami Hurricanes (7-2) 6-5 at FAU Stadium in Boca Raton, Fla. 

The 1-run victory—the first of two meetings they’ll have this season—ends a streak of three consecutive defeats to the Hurricanes.

“To keep that offense to five runs was phenomenal,” said head coach John McCormack.

The Hurricanes struck first, as senior left-hander Evan Waterbor allowed a solo homer in the top of the first inning.

In the second, Waterbor found himself in a jam with the bases loaded, but managed to escape without allowing a run. 

“I thought Evan threw really well,” said McCormack. “Last year, he would let some of these things escalate on him, tonight he didn’t. He did a really nice job of being able to control his emotions, take a deep breath, and just throw the next pitch. Credit to him.”

In the bottom half, FAU plated their first run of the evening as junior second baseman Christian Adams blasted a solo homer to right field, tying the score at one.

The Owls jumped out to a 3-run lead in the third, as junior first baseman Nolan Schanuel knocked the first of his two homers. Junior shortstop Armando Albert reached first on an error and junior left fielder Dylan Goldstein was hit by a pitch, putting runners on first and second; Schanuel’s 3-run shot to right field cleared the bases and left the Owls ahead 4-1.

Braden Ostrander took the mound for FAU to start the sixth, however, he struggled from his first pitch and was pulled before recording an out. Ostrander allowed two hits on three batters faced—one of which was a 3-run homer that put the Hurricanes back ahead by one, and caused junior southpaw Sam Drumheller to be called out of the bullpen. 

A two-run, 3-hit rally in the seventh put them back ahead by one. Schanuel came up big again, sending his second homer of the game into straight-away center field to tie the score at five.

“Nolan Shanuel is arguably our best player,” said McCormack of Schanuel who’s off to a hot start, batting .470 just eight games into the season. “Tonight he just relaxed and let the game come to him.”

Senior third baseman Jackson Ross followed Schanuel’s homer with a double hit down the left field line, and later took back the lead for FAU, scoring on an RBI single from senior DH Mitchell Hartigan.

A two-out rally in the eighth that left runners on the corners gave the Owls the opportunity to add some insurance runs. However, Ross popped out, which stranded both runners and left their lead at one heading into the ninth.

After redshirt junior left-hander Marc DeGusipe allowed a single and a recorded a strikeout to lead off the ninth, redshirt-junior Robert Wegielnik was called out of the bullpen to close the game for FAU. With the game tying run on second, Wegielnik took the mound and retired the only two batters he faced to earn the save, and secure the 1-run victory.

“It just gives you a little confidence,” McCormack said after the victory, as the Owls will now prepare to host the University of Connecticut Huskies (3-3) for a three-game series starting on Friday, March 2. 

Cameron Priester is the Sports Editor for the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet him @PriesterCameron