ATHENS, GA – Top-ranked Georgia Tech (5-1) rallied for six runs in the eighth and ninth innings to defeat 15th-ranked Georgia (3-1), 10-8, on Wednesday afternoon before a record crowd of 4,058 at Foley Field.
Trailing 8-4 after seven innings, Tech began its comeback in the eighth inning when the Yellow Jackets loaded the bases with no outs. The Yellow Jackets did score two runs in the inning, including one on Matthew Boggs’ bases loaded walk, but Georgia’s Joey Friedman came on to put out the fire by forcing Richard Lewis to ground into a double play and inducing a groundout from Bryan Prince.
Tech mounted another rally in the top of the ninth inning, all coming after two outs. Jason Perry singled and took second base when Tyler Parker legged out an infield single. Wes Rynders struck out, which should have ended the game, but reached first base on a wild pitch. Perry, who took third base on the wild pitch, came around to score when Georgia catcher Tony Burchett’s throw sailed into right field.
Boggs loaded the bases when he was hit by a pitch, and Lewis reached on Andy Neufeld’s throwing error while Parker and Rynders scored on the play. After Mark Teixeira was intentionally walked, Prince drove in Boggs forthe final run of the inning with a RBI single to deep short to provide the final 10-8 margin.
Tech’s Andy Mitchell (1-0) picked up the win in relief while Jeff Watchko earned his second save of the season by tossing a scoreless ninth inning. Georgia’s Jody Friedman (0-1) took the loss after allowing four runs, all unearned, in 1.2 innings.
The Yellow Jackets took a 1-0 lead in the game on Richard Lewis’ solo home run in the top of the first inning, his second of the season. The Bulldogs knotted the score at 1-1 with a RBI sacrifice fly from Coffey in the bottom of the second inning.
Tyler Parker gave Tech a 3-1 lead with a two-run double in the fourth, and Mark Teixeira made the score 4-1 with his fourth home run of the year in the fifth inning. Georgia’s Jeff Keppinger delivered a RBI double in the bottom of the fifth inning to cut the Tech lead to 4-2.
The Bulldogs used a six-run sixth inning to take command of the game. Mark Thornhill led off that frame with a walk and moved to second base on a single from David Coffey. After a sacrifice bunt advanced the runners, Darryl Blaze and Andy Neufeld delivered back-to-back RBI singles before Pollock blasted a three-run homer to left field. Thornhill capped off the scoring in the inning with a RBI single that scored Adam Swann.
Tech’s Lewis, Prince and Parker each had three hits in the game, while Perry went 2-for-4 with three runs scored. Tech outhit Georgia 13-11 in the game.
Blake Bodenmiller paced the Bulldogs’ offense with three hits in five at bats, while Pollock and Thornhill each added two hits in the game.
Georgia Tech will face Elon in the Yellow Jackets’ 2001 home opener on Friday at 3 p.m. at Russ Chandler Stadium in the opener of a three-game weekend series.