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CORAL GABLES (AP) — Sam Abrams arrived at Miami five years ago, hoping to one day see the College World Series.
He’s finally going there.
Abrams worked out of a bases-loaded, no-out jam to four crucial shutout innings of relief, Miami took command with five runs in the seventh and the Hurricanes earned their first CWS trip since 2008 by beating Virginia Commonwealth 10-3 on Saturday to finish off a two-game sweep of their super regional.
Players mobbed each other on the field after the final out, throwing their caps in celebration and piling on one another between home plate and the pitchers’ mound. It’s the 12th time that Miami will play in the CWS in Jim Morris’ 22 seasons as head coach of the Hurricanes.
Willie Abreu homered and drove in two runs and David Thompson added two RBIs for the Hurricanes (49-15), who will seek their fifth national championship and first since 2001. All nine Miami starters in the batting order scored, and seven of them an RBI.
Logan Farrar hit a leadoff home run and Matt Davis and Jimmy Kerrigan each had two hits for VCU (40-25), which was in the super regional round for the first time. Rams starter Heath Dwyer (10-3) gave up four runs, three earned, and five hits in four innings.
VCU had not allowed more than three runs in any of its last 16 games, until Saturday.
The highlight was Abrams, who has a story unlike just about anyone else on the Hurricanes’ roster.
He’s from Miami. His mother, Lisa Goldstein, went to Miami and is a regular at Hurricanes’ football and baseball games to this day. He pitched for the Hurricanes as a freshman in 2011, then was back with the team in 2013.
The 2012 season? He didn’t make the club. He got cut. Hard to imagine why now, not with Abrams — who just finished his masters degree in business — having posted a 1.21 ERA this season, having allowed only three runs.
And what he did in the third inning Saturday, with the game tied at 3-3, will be part of Miami lore.
After VCU loaded the bases with none out against Miami starter Thomas Woodrey thanks to a walk, a double and a hit batter, the Hurricanes summoned Abrams. The sidewinder struck out the first two Rams he faced, then got James Bunn to fly out to right and keep the game tied — and when the third out was recorded, a half-dozen Hurricanes bounced out of the dugout to greet him in celebration.
Jacob Heyward put Miami up for good in the fourth, reaching on a fielder’s choice, stealing second, stealing third and scoring on a passed ball. Abrams did the rest, allowing just one of the 13 batters he faced to reach base.
George Iskenderian led off the Miami seventh with a double, and the Hurricanes were soon rolling. Thompson, Brandon Lopez, Abreu, Heyward and Ricky Eusebio all had RBIs before that inning was over, and before long Miami — which went to the CWS 22 times in a 31-season span from 1978 through 2008 — could finally celebrate another trip there.
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