No. 8 Georgia Tech Hosts Wake Forest in ACC Series

March 10, 2005

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ATLANTA–Georgia Tech (12-2, 3-0 ACC) continues a nine-game homestand as the Yellow Jackets host Wake Forest (9-7, 3-0) for a three-game Atlantic Coast Conference series this weekend. First pitch on Friday is set for 4 p.m., and the series continues on Saturday and Sunday at 1:30 p.m. each day.

The weekend series is a matchup of two teams that got off to fast starts in ACC play last weekend. The Yellow Jackets ascended to No. 8 in the Collegiate Baseball poll after a three-game sweep at Duke, and Wake Forest completed a three-game sweep of Virginia in Winston-Salem.

For the year, Tech is batting .354 as a team, averaging 11.6 runs per game while posting a .467 on base percentage. Since scoring two runs on four hits in the season opener, the Yellow Jackets have scored at least nine runs in each of the last 14 games. Tech has scored 75 runs in the last five games (15.0 rpg).

Third basebam Wes Hodges (.468AVG/.534OBP/.871SLG, 6HR, 16RBI) has paced the Tech offense, leading the club in batting, slugging, on base percentage, home runs and hits. Freshman catcher/DH Matt Wieters (.377/.529/.491, 1, 13) is the reigning ACC Player of the Week after going 12-for-14 in the Duke series.

The rest of the Tech lineup features catcher Andy Hawranick (.294/.390/.471, 2, 8), first baseman Whit Robbins (.245/.432/.415, 1, 11), second baseman Mike Trapani (.261/.414/.326, 1, 7), shortstop Tyler Greene (.400/.500/.691, 2, 17), left fielder Steven Blackwood (.364/.456/.477, 1, 21), center fielder Danny Payne (.433/.583/.683, 3, 17), right fielder Jeremy Slayden (.343/.407/.614, 5, 23) and DH Jeff Kindel (.378/.489/.622, 1, 9).

WEEKEND PITCHING MATCHUPS (GT vs. WF):Friday: RHP Jason Neighborgall (3-0, 3.27) vs. LHP Tim Morley (0-2, 5.57)Saturday: LHP Lee Hyde (2-0, 5.59) vs. RHP Josh Ellis (2-1, 5.73)Sunday: RHP Blake Wood (3-0, 2.33) vs. RHP Matt Hammond (1-3, 10.19)

GAME COVERAGE: Live statistics will be available on the internet at www.ramblinwreck.com. Radio coverage is available on WREK (91.1 FM) in Atlanta and on the internet at www.wrek.org.

Series vs. Wake Forest – Georgia Tech Leads, 53-34-1

Georgia Tech leads Wake Forest, 53-34-1, in a series that dates to 1898. The Yellow Jackets and Demon Deacons have played annually since 1981 when Tech joined the Atlantic Coast Conference.

Tech owns a 33-11 record against Wake Forest in Atlanta, including a three-game sweep of the Deacons at Russ Chandler Stadium in the 2003 season. Since the ACC adopted the current three-game series format in 1992, Tech has won four of six series in Atlanta (all coming by three-game sweeps).

Tech is 22-15 against Wake Forest since 1994 under head coach Danny Hall.

Last year in Winston-Salem, the Yellow Jackets won two of three games. Tech won the opener, 9-8 in 10 innings, and Wake Forest won the second game, 8-4. Tech won the series with a 9-2 win in game three.

Georgia Tech has won six of the last seven meetings with Wake Forest.

LEADING OFF … NEWS & NOTES ON THE YELLOW JACKETS

THE OFFENSE: The Yellow Jackets led the ACC with a .319 team batting average during the 2004 season. Tech has hit over .300 as a team in 19 of the last 21 years, and has averaged at least seven runs per game every year since 1981. Tech has led the ACC in batting in five years (1994, 1995, 2000, 2001, 2004) under Danny Hall. Tech is batting .354 this year.

WORKING THE WALKS: The Yellow Jackets have walked 115 times in 15 games (7.7 bb/g) in 2005 while posting a .467 team on base percentage. Tech has 115 walks to 101 strikeouts; the last Tech team to record more walks than strikeouts for an entire season was in 1984 (370/278).

BATS ON FIRE: Tech has scored 75 runs in the last five games (15.0 r/g), scoring at least 11 runs in each contest. Tech is batting .422 and has a .508 team on base percentage. Over the last five games, eight Tech regulars are batting over .400 – Matt Wieters (.591), Danny Payne (.550), Wes Hodges (.458), Michael Fisher (.455), Steven Blackwood (.455), Tyler Greene (.417), Mike Trapani (.417) and Jeremy Slayden (.407).

HALL REACHES COACHING MILESTONES

Georgia Tech head coach Danny Hall reached 700 wins for his career in Tech’s 9-1 win over Georgia Southern on Mar. 1. Now in his 18th season as a head coach at Georgia Tech and Kent State, Hall owns a career record of 704-330 (.681).

Hall needs three wins to reach 500 in his career at Georgia Tech, and with eight wins he will become the school’s all-time leader in career victories. Hall, who has a 497-213 (.700) record in 12 years at Tech, already ranks as the school’s winningest coach by percentage.

Georgia Tech Coaching Leaders   Coach         Years    Record     Pct.1. Jim Morris    1982-93  504-244-1  .6742. Danny Hall    1994-05  497-213-0  .7003. Jim Luck      1962-81  320-280-5  .5334. Joe Pittard   1946-61  147-99-5   .6075. John Heisman  1904-17  163-97-1   .627

FAMILIAR FACES

Familiar faces will reunite this weekend as Georgia Tech hosts Wake Forest. Demon Deacon head coach Rick Rembielak was an assistant for Tech head coach Danny Hall at Kent State from (1988-93). Rembielak became the head coach at Kent State when Hall got the head job at Georgia Tech.

Wake Forest assistant Jon Palmieri was Tech’s volunteer assistant from 2002-04. Tech pitching coach Bobby Moranda served in a similar capacity at Wake Forest from 1996-2001.

STREAKING JACKETS

The Yellow Jackets won 16 straight ACC games to finish the 2004 season, a new school record, after starting the year 2-5 in conference play.

Tech has opened the 2005 season with three straight league wins to extended its win streak in conference play to 19 games. The current 19-game streak is the longest since the league expanded to nine members with the addition of Florida State in 1992, and it ranks as the third longest overall in ACC history.

LONGEST CONFERENCE WIN STREAKS IN ACC HISTORYWINS    SCHOOL          YEAR(S)1. 21   Clemson         1987-88   21   North Carolina  1963-653. 19   Georgia Tech    2004-pres.4. 17   Florida State   19965. 14   Clemson         1975-76   14   Clemson         1993-94

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