Feb. 25, 2005
ATLANTA – Jason Neighborgall pitched six strong innings and Wes Hodges hit two home runs to lead No. 13 Georgia Tech (7-1) to an 11-6 win over visiting Rutgers (3-1) on Friday afternoon at Russ Chandler Stadium in the opener of a three-game series.
The Yellow Jackets extended their win streak to seven games after dropping their season opener. Tech scored at least nine runs for the seventh straight game.
Neighborgall (2-0) won his second straight start, holding the Scarlet Knights to two runs on just three hits in six innings of work. He issued two walks and struck out six.
Hodges went 3-for-5 with two home runs, his team-leading fourth and fifth of the year. He added a double, scored three runs and drove in two runs. Jeff Kindel had three hits and drove in two runs, and Danny Payne added two hits and two RBI. The Yellow Jackets outhit the Scarlet Knights, 11-7.
Leading 3-2 after five innings, Tech exploded for eight runs in the sixth to take an 11-2 lead. Hodges led off the inning with a solo home run, his second of the game, and the first nine Yellow Jacket hitters of the inning reached base safely. Danny Payne and Jeremy Slayden each had two-run singles, Jeff Kindel and Mike Trapani had had RBI singles and Steven Blackwood drove in a run with a bases-leaded walk.
Rutgers touched Tech reliever Brad Rulon for three runs in the seventh, including a two-run single from Jeff Frazier, to pull within 11-5. A pinch hit, solo home run from Ryan Hill, his second of the year, made the score 11-6 in the eighth inning. But Tech freshmen relievers Brian Futral and Matt Wieters recorded the seven outs of the game to preserve the victory.
Frazier led the Scarlet Knights, going 3-for-4 with a home run and four RBI from the leadoff position.
The Yellow Jackets took a 1-0 lead in the second inning when Hodges doubled and scored on Kindel’s RBI groundout. A solo home run from Frazier tied the score at 1-1 in the top of the third before Tyler Greene laced a RBI double in the bottom of the inning to make the score 2-1.
A solo home run from Hodges extended the lead to 3-1 in the fourth, but Rutgers pulled to within 3-2 in the fifth on Frazier’s RBI single.
Rutgers starter Tom Malifronte (0-1) took the loss, allowing five runs on six hits in five-plus innings.
Georgia Tech and Rutgers will continue the series on Saturday and Sunday at 1:30 p.m. each day.