Jesus Aguilar hit a towering home run and right-hander Sandy Alcantara pitched eight strong innings Sunday as the visiting Miami Marlins ended an eight-game losing streak with a 3-1 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Aguilar also had a single, a sacrifice fly and two RBIs for Miami, which avoided being swept in the four-game series.
Alcantara (3-5) gave up one unearned run and six hits, walked two and struck out six. Yimi Garcia pitched the ninth for his 10th save.
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Florida Panthers Pregame: Matt Kiersted making the most of latest opportunity
When the Florida Panthers need reinforcements on the blueline, Matt Kiersted has usually been the first player they have called upon.
He has yet to let them down.
“Whenever they tell me down in Charlotte that I’m going to get called up, I kind of start mentally preparing myself,” Kiersted said.
“A lot of it is mental, like flying and playing the same day and little things like that, so the more I can mentally get myself in the right head frame and ready to go, the better.”
Previously, Kiersted was one of four players to be called up from the Charlotte Checkers on Dec. 16 after playing on back-to-back nights already when seven Panthers players tested positive for Covid-19.
The result of that game for Kiersted was his first NHL goal and 21:11 of ice time in a 4-1 loss to the Los Angeles Kings.
Fast forward to Jan. 20 and the Panthers needed to make yet another last-minute call-up.
Kiersted was that defenseman.
On Wednesday, Kiersted took a flight from Charlotte to Toronto as a precaution to stay ready to be a potential call-up, as Juolevi suffered a lower-body injury in Tuesday’s loss to the Calgary Flames.
When that lower-body injury flared up enough to where Juolevi needed to be placed on IR on Thursday, Kiersted boarded a flight to Edmonton and got ready to play against the Oilers that night.
“It was different having that long of a flight the day of the game,” Kiersted said. “Whenever you get called up, you gotta be ready for whatever is thrown at you.
“It was a long travel day, but I was able to get to the hotel for a couple of hours and settle down and rest a little bit before the game.”
What was thrown at him was a four-hour flight prior to a matchup with one of the league’s best duos — Leon Draisaitl and Connor McDavid.
That duo has a combined 113 points and ranks first and third on the points leaderboard respectively.
Despite the strenuous travel, Kiersted played 13:29 in a 6-0 win over the Oilers.
“He flew this morning and we threw him in,” Panthers interim coach Andrew Brunette said after the game.
“Really good for him. That’s a great experience and really shows his maturity level to be able to play a game like that after flying in from Toronto today. Really happy for him.”
Kiersted played a big role in Florida’s 2-1 win over the Vancouver Canucks the following night as well, logging just over 10 minutes of ice time and blocking three shots in a shootout win the Panthers had to grind it out for.
With Forsling still on Covid-19 protocol and Juolevi unable to be activated from IR until Jan. 27, Kiersted has more time to make the most of this opportunity when the Panthers take on the Seattle Kraken on Sunday.
“He’s taken the opportunity well and I think it’s not an easy thing to just jump right in there and play right away,” Panthers rookie Anton Lundell said.
“He’s been very good, he’s a good player, he’s hard to play against, he moves the puck well, and I’m very happy for him.”
Morning Skate Updates
- Sergei Bobrovsky will be the Panthers’ starting goaltender on Sunday against the Kraken.
- Sam Bennett is a game-time decision after suffering a lower-body injury, Joe Thornton would likely play if Bennett cannot go.
- Patric Hornqvist skated this morning, but is still day-to-day, he will not play.
- Frank Vatrano will slide into the lineup tonight for one of Maxim Mamin, Mason Marchment, or Owen Tippett.
FLORIDA PANTHERS ON DECK
FLORIDA PANTHERS AT SEATTLE KRAKEN
- When: Sunday, 9 p.m.
- Where: Climate Pledge Arena; Seattle
- Tickets: CLICK HERE
- TV/Streaming: Bally Sports Florida
- Radio: WQAM 560-AM, SiriusXM
- NHL Betting Odds from BetUS: Florida favored (Money Line -250) — (Puck Line -1.5 -105) — Over/Under 6.5 (-105/-115)
- Last season: Did not play
- All-time regular season series: Seattle leads 1-0-0
- This season: Seattle 4, @Florida 1 (Nov. 22)
NFC Divisional Round: Los Angeles Rams @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers Live Thread & Game Information
This afternoon’s matchup will be the second of two NFC Division round games and the third of four divisional-round games in total this weekend. The winner of each of the four games will advance to their conference championship game next week to determine the two teams, each to represent their conference in this year’s Super Bowl. This evening’s game will feature the Los Angeles Rams, who will travel east to Florida this week, and the reigning Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The Buccaneers come into this week coming off a win over the Philadelphia Eagles last week in the Wildcard Round of the playoffs by a convincing 31 to 15 score. The Ram likewise won their game in the Wildcard Round last weekend, defeating their division rival Arizona Cardinals by a 34 to 11 score.
Please use this thread to discuss this afternoon’s playoff game, or any of the other upcoming action around the NFL this weekend and as always your Miami Dolphins. Please remember to follow all site rules in the live threads as you would in any other post on The Phinsider. As always, please remember that SBNation is very strict on illegal game streams, and sharing, discussing, or providing any streams may result in a warning or suspension from the platform.
- When: Sunday, January 23rd, 3:00 PM EST
- Where: Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Florida
- TV: NBC
- Streaming: Yahoo Sports Mobile App; FuboTV, Peacock
- Odds: Buccaneers -2.5
- Over/Under: 47.5
Miami football elite prospect weekend has recruits excited
Elite prospect weekend for the Miami football program has recruits excited about the future under Mario Cristobal. Steve Wiltfong of 247 Sports quoted 13 potential future Hurricanes following their participation on Elite Prospect Weekend. The list of players who participated is extensive.
Cristobal has quickly made a difference in recruiting for the Miami football program. Miami has added three top 100 players to its 2022 Class since Cristobal was named the new head coach last month. Elite Prospect Weekend was focused on future prospects. Several five-star prospects were in Coral Gables among the blue chips.
Five-star cornerback Cormani McClain, the fourth-ranked player, top CB and number one player in Florida was the highest-ranked player in to participate in Elite Prospect Weekend. Alabama, BYU, Florida, Michigan and Ohio State are the programs McClain is most strongly considering in addition to Miami.
Focusing first on South Florida and then the entire state should be the goal for any Miami football staff. Howard Schnellenberger set the blueprint for recruiting at Miami. Schnellenberger set the virtual State of Miami as winning recruiting in Dade, Broward and Palm Beach Counties. South Florida recruits were quoted by Wiltfong.
“The atmosphere was amazing…I felt the energy in the building when I was talking to the coaches and just walking around. What stands out about Miami to me is how their coaches explain how they want to coach you and not just tell you. Coach (Bryan McClendon) will be a huge reason I decide to go there if I decide to go there.”
Brandon Inniss from American Heritage in Fort Lauderdale is the top-ranked wide receiver in the 247 Sports composite rankings. Inniss was not strongly considering Miami before Cristobal was hired and brought McClendon to Coral Gables as the WR coach from Oregon. Inniss being impressed above is important.
Also attending Elite Prospect Weekend were two of the top three QBs in the Class of 2023. Dante Moore from Detroit and Nicholaus Iamaleava from Downey, California are both five-star prospects who are the third and fourth-ranked QBs in the Class of 2023. Iamaleava was quoted as saying “Definitely love Miami.”
Getting five-star prospects on campus, particularly one from South Florida like Inniss is critical for the Miami football program. The Hurricanes are still recruiting five-star Monsignor Pace defensive end, Shemar Stewart, in the Class of 2022. Signing Stewart would be a huge boost for the future of the Miami football program.
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