May 2, 2010
RALEIGH, N.C. – Jed Bradley scattered three runs – two earned – over 6.0 innings, and Matt Skole drove in four runs at the plate to lead No. 4 Georgia Tech over NC State, 5-3, in the series finale Sunday at Doak Field.
The Jackets improved to 36-9 overall and 17-7 in the Atlantic Coast Conference with the win. NC State falls to 28-18 and 11-13 in ACC play.
“We played much better defensively today,” Head coach Danny Hall said. “We didn’t walk too many guys, and we didn’t give them a chance to put pressure on us. Anytime we don’t walk guys and we play good defense, we have a great chance to win.”
Bradley worked six innings Sunday, allowing the three runs on seven hits to improve to 7-2 on the season. The junior left-hander has been victorious in each of his last three starts, not allowing more than three runs in each outing.
“Jed [Bradley] has pitched great for us and given us a chance to win every Sunday,” Hall said. “We needed him to pitch well today because we are going through a little bit of a funk. I thought he threw the ball well given that he held a good hitting team like NC State to just three runs.”
Skole was 2-for-4 with four RBI on the day, and hit his 14th homer on the season with a deep shot right center in the top of the first off of NC State starter Alex Sogard.
“He [Matt Skole] had a big day,” Hall added. “He got down two strikes on the count, and their pitcher made a mistake, so he made him pay. I was really surprised it went out because the ball hasn’t been traveling well here today.”
Sogard (0-2) picked up the loss after allowing four runs on five hits in 3.1 innings.
NC State got a run back in the bottom half of the first as Drew Poulk hit a RBI double to center. The Wolfpack added two more in the third, one on a groundout and another on a sac fly, to tie the game at 3-3.
The Jackets broke a 3-3 tie in the fourth inning, when Cole Leonida sent a solo shot to left field off of Sogard. It was Leonida’s 10th homer of the season, as he became the fifth Tech player to reach the double-digit home run total this season.
The Jackets added another run in the seventh inning on some clutch two-out hitting by Skole. With senior Plagman stealing second to put himself in scoring position, Skole sent a grounder through the right side to drive Plagman home for a 5-3 cushion.
Sophomore Mark Pope relieved Bradley in the seventh, and recorded his first save of the season after holding the Wolfpack scoreless on just one hit in the final three innings. Pope, Tech’s midweek starter, made his first relief appearance of the season.
“Mark [Pope] is pitching as good as anyone we have right now,” Hall said. “We wanted to use him as a setup guy today, but he was throwing so good that we decided to leave him in there.”
The Jackets will take the midweek off for exams before returning to action next weekend with a three-game series against Illinois-Chicago at Russ Chandler Stadium. First pitch Friday is at 7 p.m.