March 10, 2009
ATLANTA – Two-run home runs by Derek Dietrich and Tony Plagman highlighted an 11-run third inning to lift No. 6 Georgia Tech (10-1) to a 17-3 victory over Mercer (5-7) Tuesday afternoon at Russ Chandler Stadium.
The Yellow Jackets hit five home runs in addition to six doubles in a game that saw all nine starters, and 13 different Tech batters, collect hits. Additionally, 12 different players scored runs, 11 had at least one RBI, and 10 recorded extra-base hits against the Bears.
Plagman led Tech with four RBI on two hits in three at-bats, while Luke Murton added three hits in the game.
Dietrich’s homer, which followed an RBI single by Jeff Rowland, gave the Yellow Jackets their first lead of the game at 4-3. Plagman’s home run plated Jason Haniger, who reached on a double after Dietrich’s round-tripper. A pair of hits and an HBP then loaded the bases for Chase Burnette, who walked to force home the sixth run of the frame. Tech’s final five runs of the inning came on a fielder’s choice by Patrick Long, a sacrifice fly by Haniger, and a pair of RBI doubles by Rowland and Plagman.
Tech’s 11 runs in the third were the most scored in an inning by the Jackets since May 14, 2005, when Tech defeated Virginia Tech 27-2, using a 12-run first and 11-run second inning.
Jed Bradley (1-0) was solid in the first start of his career, settling down to hold the Bears to three runs on three hits while striking out six in five innings after spotting Mercer a pair of runs in the first inning on a two-run single by Tyler McCarty.
An RBI single by Luke Murton split the Bears’ lead in half in the bottom of the first, but Mercer pushed the score to 3-1 on a solo home run Michael Langley in the third inning.
Following Tech’s 11-run explosion in the third, the Jackets went scoreless in the fourth and fifth before adding an unearned run in the bottom of the sixth. Miller, House and Garofalo all hit solo home runs in the seventh, and an RBI groundout by Evan Martin capped the Jackets’ scoring in the eighth inning.
Tech will return to action Wednesday afternoon when Kennesaw State travels down I-75 for a 6 p.m. game at Russ Chandler Stadium. Kevin Jacob (1-0, 2.89 ERA) will take the mound for the Yellow Jackets, and Tech fans can watch the game live on ACC Select (www.accselect.com). The game will also be available on WREK Radio (91.1 FM in Atlanta/www.wrek.org), and live stats can be found at Ramblinwreck.com.