March 10, 2017
CORAL GABLES, Fla. – No. 16 Georgia Tech battled back to take the lead in the fifth and had the go ahead run on base in the ninth, yet came up short in its comeback bid in a 10-8 road loss at Miami on Friday night in the two teams’ ACC opener at Mark Light Stadium.
The loss drops Tech to 9-3 overall and 0-1 in league play, while the Canes improve to 5-8 and 1-0 ACC with the narrow win.
The Jackets were led offensively by Joey Bart who was 2-for-4 with a home run, a walk, three RBIs and two runs scored and Coleman Poje who went 3-for-4 with two doubles, a walk and two RBIs. Wade Bailey (1-for-4, BB, 2 runs) and Trevor Craport (4-for-5, 2B, 2 runs) both extended their hitting streaks to 12 and 11 games, respectively.
For Miami, the Canes recorded three triples and two doubles in the win. Carl Chester was 4-for-4 with two doubles, two RBIs and three runs scored, while Romy Gonzalez was 1-for-3 with a triple, two RBIs and two runs scored. Michael Burns was 1-for-3 with a triple and three RBIs.
Freshman hurler Xzavion Curry (3-1) was handed the loss, as the righty gave up eight runs, five of which were earned, on seven hits and two walks. He also struck out six in 4.0 innings of work.
Georgia Tech drove Miami ace Jesse Lepore out of the game after 4.1 innings, hitting him up for seven runs on eight hits and one walk. However, reliever Albert Maury, Jr. (1-0) earned the win throwing 2.2 scoreless innings, while Frankie Bartow (3) picked up his third save in a hectic ninth inning.
Miami got on the scoreboard first in the bottom half of the first, as James Davison lined a triple to deep center field and then scored on a ground out to second for the first run of the game.
The Canes then got a single from Chester and then took advantage of an errant throw on a failed pickoff attempt that saw Chester move up to third before Gonzalez hit a sacrifice fly to center to put the home team up 2-0 early.
With the help of a walk, a throwing error and a passed ball, Miami pushed across two more runs in the second to extend its lead to 4-0 after just two complete.
With one swing off the bat in the top of the third, the Jackets got on the scoreboard and cut the UM lead in half at 4-2. Craport hustled down the line to beat out an infield single with two outs to extend the inning for Bart who belted a deep fly ball over the wall in right center field for his eight home run of the season.
However, in the bottom half of the third the Canes got the two runs back on a two-run triple by Burns to push its lead back out to four at 6-2.
After a 1-2-3 inning in the fourth, the Jackets’ bats exploded in the fifth to swarm back and take the lead.
A one-out walk by Bailey got things started, as Craport then doubled to left to bring up Bart who promptly singled through the left side to score Bailey from third. Kel Johnson followed with a line drive right at the third baseman that ricocheted into left field to plate Craport and put the score at 6-4 in favor of Miami.
Kyle McCann was then hit by a pitch which brought Poje up to the plate with the bases loaded. The redshirt-senior hit a sharp line drive over the third baseman’s head to drive in both Bart and Johnson to tie the score up at 6-6.
Freshman outfielder Chase Murray followed with a sacrifice fly to left field to give the Jackets the lead at 7-6.
Yet the scoring continued in the fifth, as Miami had a single and an RBI triple to knot the game up at 7-7 two batters into the inning. The Canes then retook the lead on a fielder’s choice on a ground ball in the hole at second to put the score at 8-7.
The two bullpens settled down to pitch scoreless innings over the sixth and seventh, until a two-run double by the Canes in the eighth put the score at 10-7 heading into the final frame.
Refusing to quit, the Jackets looked poised to take the lead in the ninth, as Bailey and Craport recorded back-to-back singles to lead off the inning. A wild pitch and a walk to Bart loaded the bases with no outs.
Following a strikeout, McCann hit a deep fly ball to center field for a sacrifice fly to score Bailey from third. Poje then drew a two-out walk to load the bases again for the Jackets, this time with two outs. Murray hit a slicing line drive to left field that the Miami left fielder made a great jump on to make the catch and seal the 10-8 win for the Canes.
Tech (9-3, 0-1 ACC) and Miami (5-8, 1-0 ACC) return to Mark Light Field tomorrow night for game two of the three-game conference series. First pitch is set for 7 p.m. ET.
— GeorgiaTech Baseball (@GTBaseball) March 11, 2017
* Joey Bart has now homered in five straight games and has eight home runs on the year.
* Wade Bailey pushed his hitting streak out to 12 games and has hit safely in every game this season for the Jackets.
* Trevor Craport extended his hitting streak to a career-best 11 straight games.
* The loss was Xzavion Curry’s first loss as a Jacket on the mound.
* Miami stranded nine runners in the game, while Tech left eight on base overall.