May 28, 2005
JACKSONVILLE, FL (AP) – Georgia Tech shortstop Tyler Greene had three hits including a three-run homer as Tech handed Florida State its worse loss in 23 years, beating the Seminoles 18-2 on Saturday in a game shortened to seven innings due to the 10-run rule, to move into the finals of the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville.
Georgia Tech (41-16), playing in the title game for the third straight year, will meet Virginia in Sunday’s championship game, slated for 1 p.m. ET (FSN South, WREK-FM 91.1). Florida State drops to 50-18 on the season in suffering its worst loss since a 21-5 defeat to Georgia in 1982.
The Yellow Jackets started fast and closed with a flurry, scoring a pair of runs in the first and second innings before posting 7-run innings in the third and seventh. They cranked out 14 hits led by Greene’s 12th home run of the season along with a double, single and walk in five at-bats. He also scored three runs and drove in three.
Tech built their lead to 11-0 after three innings when Green and Whit Robbins each stroked three-run homers in the third inning.
Florida State added single runs in the third and fifth innings with Ryne Malone’s double driving home the first run and the second one scoring on a passed ball. Georgia Tech head coach Danny Hall protested the call and was eventually ejected from the game by home plate umpire Tony Maners.
“I’m very proud of our team,” said Hall, who led the Jackets to ACC Tournament titles in 2000 and 2003. “I thought they played great baseball today. Obviously the runs early were nice to see.
“I know Ryan struggled a little bit with his command but made some big pitches to keep them from scoring on us. I thought that Jared Hyatt came in and really threw the ball great for us to kind of keep them in check. I’m very proud of my team and excited about getting a chance to play for the championship tomorrow.”
Tech’s Danny Payne also added three hits while Robbins and Steven Blackwood each drove in three runs.
“That was an old fashion whipping – they beat us in every area,” said Florida State head coach Mike Martin. “That’s the best offensive club we’ve seen this year, no question about it. They’re a team that’s going to be very formidable in post-season play. They’ve got all of the necessary ingredients to get to Omaha.
“I think it just shows you the strength of our league because the team that finished seventh is playing the top seed for the conference championship tomorrow.”
Jared Hyatt (3-2) relieved Georgia Tech starter Ryan Turner in the fifth inning and held FSU without a run or hit for 2 2/3 innings to get credit for the win, . FSU starter Hunter Jones (4-3) also threw 2 2/3 innings, but gave up six hits and nine runs (only two of which were earned).
The game was called after seven innings due to Tech’s 16-run lead. The ACC instituted a 10-run rule or mercy rule for the tournament this year, in which games are ended if a team trails by 10 or more runs after having batted at least seven innings.