FORT MILL, SC (May 17) – Jason Basil went 4-for-4 and hitfor the cycle and Steve Kelly tossed seven strong innings asthird-ranked Georgia Tech defeated Duke, 9-3, in the first round ofthe Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament at Knights Stadium.
The victory advanced the Yellow Jackets (43-14) into the second round of the ACC Tournament where they will face Wake Forest, who defeated North Carolina earlier in the day 8-7 in 13 innings, on Thursday at 5 p.m. The Blue Devils (17-40) will face the Tar Heels in a loser’s bracket game on Thursday at 10 a.m.
Georgia Tech starting pitcher Steve Kelly (7-2) picked up the victory after holding Duke to two runs on five hits in seven innings of work. He walked two batters and recorded two strikeouts.
Basil became the first Yellow Jacket to hit for the cycle since Ryan Ritter accomplished the feat on March 20, 1995 against Maryland. Basil hit a RBI triple in the first, singled in the third, doubled in the fifth and belted a solo homer in the seventh.
The Yellow Jackets took a 2-0 lead in the first with the RBI triple from Basil and a run-scoring double from Bryan Prince.
After Duke cut the lead to 2-1 in the top of the second, Tech responded with two more runs in the bottom of the second to make the score 4-1. Tech pushed the lead to 6-1 with a RBI single from Wes Rynders in the third and a sacrifice fly from Brad Stockton in the fifth.
Mark Teixeira hit his ACC-leading 16th home run of the season with a two-run shot in the sixth before Basil added his 11th home run of the season in the seventh.
Rynders finished the afternoon with three hits in four at bats, while Teixeira and Richard Lewis each had two hits in the game.
Duke starter Kevin Perry (3-6) took the loss after allowing four runs in one-plus innings of work.
Georgia Tech ace Cory Vance will get start on the mound on Thursday against Wake Forest, while the Demon Deacons will counter with right-hander Matt Briggs.