No. 21 Tech Baseball Hosts Duke in ACC Series

May 6, 2004

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ATLANTA–No. 21 Georgia Tech (27-17, 9-5 ACC) returns to the friendly confines of Russ Chandler Stadium to host Duke (23-20, 7-8) for a three-game Atlantic Coast Conference series this weekend. The series begins on Friday at 7 p.m., and continues on Saturday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m. The Yellow Jackets, who played on the road in each of the last two weekends, are playing at home for the first time since Apr. 20.

The streaking Yellow Jackets have won six straight games overall and seven straight against ACC opponents to jump to third place in the ACC standings. Tech is percentage points behind Clemson (12-6), while Virginia (14-4) currently stands in first place.

Following the weekend series, Georgia Tech will face Georgia on Turner Field on Tuesday before hosting Clemson for a three-game ACC series next weekend.

GAME COVERAGE: Live statistics will be available on the internet at www.ramblinwreck.com. Radio coverage for the games on Friday and Sunday will be available on WREK-FM (91.1 FM in Atlanta) and on the internet at www.wrek.org. Saturday’s game will be carried on 790 The Zone (790 AM in Atlanta) and on the internet at www.790thezone.com.

LEADING OFF … NEWS & NOTES ON THE YELLOW JACKETS

WEB GEMS: The Yellow Jackets are fielding .972 as a team in 2004, committing 47 errors in 44 games. Tech’s best fielding percentage since records were kept in the 1950’s is .968, which was accomplished by the 1994 team that played for the national championship and featured Nomar Garciaparra, Jason Varitek and Jay Payton. The Yellow Jackets have committed one error or less in 30 of 44 games, including 18 errorless games. In 14 conference games, Tech is fielding .983 (nine errors in 14 games).

THE LINEUP CARD: Head coach Danny Hall has used 37 different batting orders in 44 games this season.

IN THE BULLPEN: Tech has used 15 different pitchers this season, including 10 pitchers who have made at least 11 appearances. All 15 pitchers have made at least eight appearances, and eight different pitchers have started at least one game.

THE OFFENSE: After seeing the team batting average briefly drop below the .280 mark in early March, Tech has returned to its familiar ways of a potent offensive attack. The Yellow Jackets lead the ACC with a .309 team batting average, and Tech is averaging 8.3 runs per game. Tech has hit over .300 as a team in 19 of the last 21 years, and the Jackets have averaged at least seven runs per game every year since 1981. Tech has led the ACC in batting in four years (1994, 1995, 2000, 2001) under head coach Danny Hall.

GEORGIA TECH vs. DUKE

*** Georgia Tech leads Duke, 64-22, in a series that dates to 1903. The Yellow Jackets are 33-12 in games played in Atlanta.

*** Tech has had the upper hand in the series in recent years, winning 10 straight and 11 of the last 12 meetings since the 2000 ACC Tournament.

*** The Yellow Jackets went 4-0 against Duke in 2003, sweeping a regular season three-game series in Durham and winning a fourth meeting during the ACC Tournament in Salem, Va.

*** Tech won the first game of the regular season series, 9-1, behind a strong starting effort from Micah Owings (8.0 IP, 0 R) and a homer and three RBI from Matt Murton. The Yellow Jackets won game two, 11-1, with 19 hits, including home runs from Murton and Jeremy Slayden. Tech won the finale, 13-6, with 21 hits and a 3-for-3 performance from Slayden.

*** The Yellow Jackets eliminated Duke from the 2003 ACC Tournament with a 23-4 win. Aaron Walker worked his first career complete game and Slayden tied the Georgia Tech record and set an ACC Tournament record for hits with a 6-for-6 performance.

*** Georgia Tech is 29-7 against Duke under head coach Danny Hall.

STREAKING JACKETS

Georgia Tech has won six straight games overall and seven straight against ACC opponents. The Yellow Jackets’ current win streak has been highlighted by a resurgence from the pitching staff.

   Last 6 Games    W-L     ERA     opp/Avg.        Starters                5-0     2.77    .213        Bullpen         1-0     4.00    .266        Overall         6-0     3.16    .213

“5” – THE MAGIC NUMBER

Georgia Tech is 20-2 this season when the Yellow Jackets allow five runs or less. Tech’s only two losses when allowing five or less runs are against Virginia (3-4 and 1-2).

Since the arrival of pitching coach Bobby Moranda prior to the 2002 season, the Yellow Jackets are 92-6 when allowing five runs or less. Tech went 34-2 in 2003 and 38-2 in 2002 when allowing five runs or less. When allowing six or more runs, the Yellow Jackets are 31-45 since 2002, including a 7-15 mark this season.

Probable Starting PitchingFRI: Micah Owings (GT) RHP (5-2, 3.46) vs. Tim Layden (DU) LHP (5-3, 5.02)SAT: Andrew Kown  (GT) RHP (6-1, 3.99) vs. Zach Schreiber (DU) RHP (4-3, 4.12)SUN: TBA (GT) vs. Greg Burke (DU) RHP (5-4, 3.21)

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