March 31, 2018
THE FLATS – Georgia Tech pushed across 13 runs on 14 hits, while three Yellow Jacket pitchers struck out 14 batters in the 13-4 home win over the Miami Hurricanes in ACC play on Saturday afternoon at Russ Chandler Stadium.
The win clinched the series for the Jackets, who improved to 16-11 overall and 5-6 in the ACC. The loss drops Miami to 12-14 overall and 6-5 in league action.
GT starter Connor Thomas (3-3) had another strong outing, as he followed up Xzavion Curry‘s12 strikeout performance last night, with a career-high 10 punch outs of his own on Saturday to earn the win. The lefty allowed just four runs on four hits and one walk over a career-long 7.1 innings pitched.
The 14 strikeouts for the Jacket pitchers was a season-high, while Thomas’ 10 strikeouts marks the third-straight game in which a Tech starter has fanned double digit batters in a game (Brant Hurter – 10 vs. Georgia Southern (March 27) and Curry – 12 vs. Miami (March 30)).
Reigning ACC pitcher of the week Evan McKendry (4-3) was handed the loss, as the Miami hurler was touched for seven runs, six of which were earned, on nine GT hits, three walks and four strikeouts.
Making the start at third base, freshman Oscar Serratos (4-for-5, 2 RBI, 2 runs, SB) recorded a career-high four base hits and matched his career-high with two RBIs, while senior second baseman Wade Bailey (3-for-4, BB, 2 RBIs, 2 runs) had three base hits and two RBIs in the win.
Freshman Baron Radcliff (1-for-2, HR, 3 RBIs) picked up his second home run of the season, a three-run shot in the eighth, while Joey Bart (2-for-3, 2 BB, RBI, 2 runs) reached base safely four times with two hits and two walks.
For Miami, the Canes’ Isaac Quinones (1-for-4, 2B, 2 RBIs) had a two-run double, while Gabe Rivera (1-for-2, HR, 2 RBIs) had a two-run home run to account for the four runs for the visitors in orange and green.
The Jackets again jumped out to an early lead on Saturday afternoon, as Bart hit an RBI single through the right side to put Tech up 1-0 early, before Tristin English was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded two batters later to score Chase Murray from third and put the home team on top 2-0 in the bottom of the third.
Hitting in the five-hole for the fourth-straight game, Bailey then singled to right center field to score Bart and Kyle McCann to cap off the frame and give the Jackets a 4-0 lead after three innings played.
Tech added a run in the fourth with the help of a Miami fielding error, which allowed Serratos to score all the way from second to put the White and Gold in front at 5-0.
One inning later, in the bottom of the fifth, Serratos and Nick Wilhite had back-to-back two-out RBI singles to push the Jackets’ lead out to 7-0 with four innings to go in the game.
Thomas, who pitched around a double in the first inning, then threw five-straight 1-2-3 innings, before Miami’s Rivera hit a two-run home run over the left field wall to get the Canes on the scoreboard in the top of the seventh and cut the Tech lead to five at 7-2.
After Miami plated two more runs on a two-run double in the top of the eighth by Quinones, the Jackets posted a six-run inning in the bottom half of the frame highlighted by a three-run home run by Radcliff and RBI singles from Austin Wilhite and Serratos to pull away for the 13-4 win.
Miami’s defense turned two double plays, which helped lead to the Jackets stranding eight runners on base. The Canes left five on the base paths in the loss.
Prior to the game, the Georgia Tech Athletic Association and baseball program presented former Yellow Jacket head coach and current Miami head coach Jim Morris with a commemorative bat engraved with the GT and his overall record as the head coach of the Jackets from 1982-93.
Game three of the series between the Jackets (16-11, 5-6 ACC) and Canes (12-14, 6-5 ACC) is set for tomorrow afternoon at 1 p.m.
— GeorgiaTech Baseball (@GTBaseball) April 1, 2018