Miami baseball misses postseason for first time in 45 years; Florida State to host regional

Florida State's streak of regional appearances is now the nation's longest, coming at the expense of the University of Miami. 

The Hurricanes (31-27) are staying home after 44 straight trips to the NCAA postseason. Miami won its pool at the ACC tournament, but the late push was not enough, and the NCAA Selection Committee said the Hurricanes were the first team out as resumes were debated. 

"It’s an honor and a privilege to be part of the 44," Miami coach Jim Morris said. "It’s a streak that’s unmatched in any sport in NCAA history. To be a part of that and be a part of that with coach (Ron) Fraser is an honor. Very disappointed that we didn’t get in.” 

Morris said he felt like Miami made a good argument late in the year, winning six straight games. That included a pair of wins in pool play, over Georgia Tech and Wake Forest, in the ACC Tournament before losing to North Carolina in the semifinals. 

"But (Sunday), watching the games being played out and seeing all of the upsets, you know it starts shrinking down the number of at-large bids," Morris said. "And I guess we were the last team not to get in." 

FSU (39-20) now has the nation's longest streak at 40 straight seasons, with 38 coming under coach Mike Martin. The Seminoles were considered a bubble team going into May but went 12-2 in the month to extend the streak and secure one of 16 regional host bids. 

"That speaks to Mike Martin and what he's done here," FSU left-hander Tyler Holton said. "You know it's a great program. They've proved it for decades. It's crazy to think about." 

The Seminoles had to overcome a variety of injuries in the first few months of the season as left fielder Jackson Lueck (shin splints and shingles), first baseman Drew Mendoza (thumb), third baseman Dylan Busby (shoulder and back) and right fielder Rhett Aplin (foot) missed significant playing time. Aplin, the team's leading hitter at .322, had surgery in early May and is out for the rest of the year. 

"It is definitely the strangest season that I've ever had in my 38 years," Martin said. "I just think it says a lot about our ball club, the way we kept scrapping and battling and clawing and grinding." 

The Seminoles will play No. 4 seed Tennessee Tech (40-19) on Friday at 6 p.m. (Watch ESPN). No. 2 seed UCF (40-20) will play Auburn (35-24) on Friday at noon (ESPN2) in the first game of the regional at Dick Howser Stadium. 

FSU is paired up with the winner of the Lubbock Regional, which is hosted by Texas Tech. The Seminoles had been matched up with Florida the past two years, losing in 2015 and '16 in the Super Regionals at Gainesville. 

Now, the Seminoles begin a new run as they look to reach the College World Series for the first time since 2012. FSU has had its struggles, but the pieces have come together over the last month.  

"All year we were one pitch away or we were one bad hop away," FSU senior designated hitter Quincy Nieporte said. "We’re a good team. We just really haven’t had the breaks. We haven’t created the breaks for ourselves. We stuck with it. … It’s finally paying off."

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Sports

Five areas Gators need to improve on to get offense going

The question seems to come up every season: Will this be the year that Florida has a breakout year on offense? And once again, the sense around the team is, yes, this will be the year. Why? “We have the best talent in the country and I think we are the big dogs in the SEC,” quarterback Malik Zaire said at Florida’s media day. &ldquo...
LOOK: Florida installs electronic ribbon board at The Swamp

Ernest Bagner hopes to contribute with bigger names for FAU defense
Ernest Bagner hopes to contribute with bigger names for FAU defense

With FAU’s defense adding several big additions in recent weeks, it can become easy to forget about one of their premier signing day landings. Defensive end Ernest Bagner, a transfer from Riverside (Calif.) City College, signed with the Owls as part of their attempts to replace current New Orleans Saints rookie defensive end and former Conference...
Ex-King’s Academy golf coach Ross Cash hired by FAU
Ex-King’s Academy golf coach Ross Cash hired by FAU

Ross Cash has been named Florida Atlantic University’s head men’s golf coach, the university announced. “As a member of the South Florida community for over 20 years, this is literally a dream job for me,” said Cash. “I am so thankful to athletics director Pat Chun and all of the senior staff that I met with in the interview...
Gators practice report: A freshman WR gets first-team reps, plus more video of the QBs

GAINESVILLE, Fla.  — Feleipe Franks was back with the first-team offense during Florida’s opening 1s vs. 1s “fastball” period Thursday, as the coaches continue to rotate the three competing quarterbacks during that showcase series. But that wasn’t the biggest takeaway. Freshman wide receiver...
More Stories