June 6, 2005
NCAA Atlanta Regional
Championship Game – #1 Georgia Tech 5, #2 South Carolina 0
Tech advances to NCAA Super Regional and will host Tennessee
ATLANTA – Sophomore right-handed pitcher Tim Gustafson (6-2) threw seven shut out innings and freshman first baseman Matt Wieters and junior designated hitter Jeremy Slayden each homered to lead No. 5 Georgia Tech (45-17) over No. 23 South Carolina (41-23), 5-0, to win the NCAA Atlanta Regional on Monday at Russ Chandler Stadium.
The Yellow Jackets win their fourth regional crown in the last six years (2000, ’02, ’04 and ’05) and fifth overall regional championship. The Jackets will face Tennessee in the NCAA Super Regional next weekend at Russ Chandler Stadium. The dates and times for the Super Regional will be announced on Tuesday morning on Ramblinwreck.com.
“To win four regional titles in the last six years is really saying something,” said Georgia Tech head coach Danny Hall. “We are now in the Top 16, and that is a great accomplishment, but we’re going to have to work even harder to get to the Top 8 [College World Series].”
Gustafson allowed just four hits in seven innings of work and struck out four en route to earning the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player Award.
“Tim was outstanding,” said Hall. “That is as good as he’s ever pitched in his Georgia Tech career. He had everything working.”
“I was thankful to get an opportunity to help our team win,” said Gustafson. “Every inning, I was like just one more, one pitch, one batter at a time. After the sixth inning, I thought, maybe I’ll sit and let somebody else go in, but I just wanted one more.”
Slayden went 3-for-4, with his 13th home run of the season and drove in three runs, while Wieters finished 2-for-5, with his 10th homer of the season, driving in two runs and extending his hitting streak to 15 games, to lead the Yellow Jackets offensively. Wieters also tossed two scoreless innings on the mound, allowing one hit and struck out four.
USC’s Steven Tolleson and Steve Pearce finished the day 2-for-4 to pace the Gamecocks’ offensive attack. Right-handed pitcher Aaron Rawl (9-6) took the loss on the hill, throwing 2 1/3 innings, allowing seven hits, four earned runs and struck out one.
“Congratulations to Georgia Tech,” said South Carolina head coach Ray Tanner. “They have an outstanding club and did a tremendous job. They got a great performance from Gustafson tonight. I would’ve been happy giving up four earned runs tonight, but he was so good that we just couldn’t get anything going offensively.”
Junior catcher Andy Hawranick, junior shortstop Tyler Greene, junior right fielder Jeff Kindel, freshman center fielder Danny Payne and sophomore right-handed pitcher Blake Wood were all selected to the NCAA Atlanta Regional All-Tournament team for Tech.
The Yellow Jackets struck in the first inning with one run on back-to-back singles by Kindel and Wieters, and an error by the USC right fielder, which allowed Kindel to come around and score from first base and give the Jackets a 1-0 lead.
Tech used the long ball in the top of the third inning as Wieters and Slayden hit back-to-back home runs, a two-run and solo shot, to advance the Jackets’ lead to four, 4-0.
With one out in the bottom of the sixth inning, the Gamecocks loaded the bases on two base hits and a walk, but the Jackets turned a double play, home to first base, on an attempted safety squeeze play, to keep USC off the scoreboard.
Slayden led off the seventh inning with a double and scored on a two-out RBI single by Hawranick to close out the scoring in the game and give the Yellow Jackets a 5-0 victory over the Gamecocks.
LINE SCORE R-H -EGT 1-0-3-0-0-0-1-0-0 5-11-1USC 0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0 0-5 -1
GAME NOTES: Georgia Tech’s bullpen has a 0.90 earned run average in the post-season (ACC Tournament and NCAA Atlanta Regional) and have allowed just three earned runs in 30 innings of work. Tyler Greene’s 23-game hitting streak came to an end on Monday night.
2005 NCAA Atlanta Regional All-Tournament Team
Catcher * Andy Hawranick, GT
First Base * Steve Pearce, USC
Second Base * Chris Getz, Michigan
Shortstop * Tyler Greene, GT
Third Base * Jeff Giesler, USC
Outfield * Jeff Kindel, GT
Outfield * Danny Payne, GT
Outfield * Michael Campbell, USC
Designated Hitter * Kyle Bohm, Michigan
Pitcher * Blake Wood, GT
Pitcher * Tim Gustafson, GT
Most Outstanding Player * Tim Gustafson, GT