Thomas Fans 17 in Complete-Game Win

April 28, 2018

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Tip of the cap to Connor Thomas!!!!
17 strikeouts (two off the school record 19) in the complete-game win!!!!#wheelinanddealin #TogetherWeSwarm #shakeandbake pic.twitter.com/0zTdC6aKpV

— GeorgiaTech Baseball (@GTBaseball) April 28, 2018


THE FLATS
– Georgia Tech sophomore pitcher Connor Thomas struck out a career-high 17 batters in a 5-1 complete-game win over the Wake Forest Demon Deacons on Saturday evening at Russ Chandler Stadium.

The 17 strikeouts are the most by a Tech pitcher in a single game since Buck Farmer struck out 14 batters versus Akron on Feb. 15, 2013, and is only two shy of the school record of 19 punch outs set by Jerry Bass versus Earlham in 1975.

Thomas’ 17 strikeouts is tied for the most-ever by an individual pitcher against Wake Forest all time, which has happened three times overall, most recently in 1989.

The complete-game win, in which Thomas (5-3) allowed one run on four hits and one walk, was his second of the season. The last GT pitcher to record multiple complete games in the same year was also Farmer with two 9.0-inning contests back in 2013.

With Xzavion Curry going the distance in last night’s 7-0 win and Thomas going a full 9.0 innings on Saturday, the Jackets posted back-to-back complete games for the first time since 2001 when Matt Lorenzo and Steve Kelly threw two-straight complete games on Feb. 28 and March 2.

Thomas was dominant from start to finish, as he posted six 1-2-3 innings, did not have a fly ball out for the entire game and went to a three-ball count only once against 30 batters in the walk in the top of the ninth inning. The second-year Jacket struck out seven different Wake Forest hitters, four of which struck out three times each on the day.

On the other side, Wake Forest’s Morgan McSweeney (2-5) was handed the loss. The righty was touched four five runs, four of which came by way of three Tech home runs, on six hits, five walks and six strikeouts over 6.1 innings pitched.

Thomas got some offensive help by way of three home runs, as Kyle McCann (1-for-3, HR, BB, 2 RBIs, run), Chase Murray (1-for-2, HR, 2 BB, 2 RBIs, run) and Colin Hall (1-for-3, HR, BB, RBI, run) all took McSweeney deep in the win.

Senior second basemen Wade Bailey (1-for-4, BB, run) was one of six Jackets to have a hit in the contest and has now hit safely in 12-straight games.

Wake Forest’s four hits came from just two players in Patrick Frick (2-for-4, 2B, run) and Bruce Steele (2-for-4) who both had two hits apiece in the loss.

Tech jumped out to an early lead on Saturday afternoon by way of the long ball. Murray hit a solo home run in the bottom of the second inning to put the Jackets in front 1-0, while one inning later Colin Hall hit a solo shot to right center field to double the lead at 2-0.

The solo shot for Hall was the first of his young career at Tech.

The Jackets added another run in the third on a bases loaded walk to take a 3-0 lead into the fourth inning.

After sending down the first nine Wake Forest batters in order over the first three innings, Thomas gave up back-to-back base hits to start the fourth. However, after a fielder’s choice pushed across one run from third base for the Deacons, Thomas struck out the next two hitters to keep the score at 3-1 in favor of the home team midway through the fourth.

Following a 1-2-3 inning in the fifth in which Thomas struck out two Demon Deacon batters, Wake Forest threatened again in the sixth only to see a 4-3 double play by Bailey at second base end the inning and strand two Wake Forest runners on base.

Tech added two runs in the bottom of the seventh on a monster two-run home run off the bat of McCann to pad the Jackets lead at 5-1 with two innings left to play.

That was all that Thomas needed, as he pitched around an error in the eighth and a walk in the ninth, striking out three in the final inning to finish off the complete-game win.

Georgia Tech (24-20, 11-12 ACC) will go for the series sweep of Wake Forest (19-25, 10-13 ACC) tomorrow afternoon at 1 p.m.

For the latest information on the Georgia Tech baseball team, follow us on Twitter (@GTBaseball) , Facebook , Instagram (@gt_baseball ) or visit us at www.ramblinwreck.com .

One half of Shake-and-Bake (Bake) Connor Thomas strikes out a career-high 17 batters in a 5-1 complete-game win versus Wake Forest on Saturday evening at Russ Chandler Stadium! #TogetherWeSwarm pic.twitter.com/O0mnemf8a3

— GeorgiaTech Baseball (@GTBaseball) April 28, 2018

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