May. 1, 2005
CLEMSON, S.C. – Wes Hodges drove in three runs and Ryan Turner pitched into the seventh inning to lead No. 6 Georgia Tech (32-12, 18-6) to a 6-4 win over Clemson (28-18, 13-8 ACC) on Sunday afternoon at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.
The win clinched the three-game series for the Yellow Jackets. Tech won just its second series at Clemson since the ACC adopted the current three-game format in 1992. The Yellow Jackets finished the weekend in sole possession of first place in the ACC regular season race, ahead of Miami (17-6-1) and North Carolina (15-6-1).
“I am proud of my team after last night’s tough loss,” said Tech head coach Danny Hall. “We battled back and competed today. I think that says a lot about our team. In our league, any time you win a series on the road, especially against a great team like Clemson, it’s huge.”
Turner (5-1), a sophomore left-hander, worked 6.1 innings and allowed four runs in the first weekend start of his career. He surrendered nine hits and two walks while striking out three. The Tech bullpen of Jordan Crews, Tim Ladd and Tim Gustafson worked the final 2.2 innings and did not allow a run.
Gustafson, who pitched out of an eighth inning jam and recorded the final four outs of the game, earned the first save of his collegiate career.
Hodges went 2-for-4 and drove in three runs, including a key two-run single in the fifth inning. Tyler Greene had two hits and stole two bases, while Steven Blackwood and Jeff Kindel added two hits each.
Clemson starter Kris Harvey (5-3) took the loss, allowing four runs in 2.2 innings.
The Yellow Jackets struck for an unearned run in the top of the second inning to take a 1-0 lead. Kindel singled, took second on an errant pickoff throw, advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on Whit Robbins’ sacrifice fly.
Tech sent eight batters to the plate and struck for three runs in the third inning to extend the lead to 4-0. Walks to Jake Hall and Blackwood put runners on first and second bases with one out before Matt Wieters, Kindel and Hodges followed with consecutive RBI singles.
A two-out RBI single form Travis Storrer pulled Clemson to within 4-1 in the fourth inning. Tech answered with a two-run single from Hodges in the top of the fifth inning to extend the lead to 6-1.
Clemson scored two runs in the sixth on a two-out, two run single from Herman Demmink to make the score 6-3.
The Yellow Jackets had an opportunity to extend the lead in the top of the seventh inning, putting runners on second and third bases with one out. But Danny Payne hit into a bizarre double play that went pitcher-first base-catcher and saw Hodges put out at home plate. Clemson pulled to within 6-4 in the bottom of the inning on a two-out RBI double from Travis Storrer.
The Tigers mounted another two-out rally in the bottom of the eighth inning, getting two-out singles from Demmink and Brad Chalk off Tech relievers Jordan Crews and Tim Ladd, but Gustafson came out of the bullpen and retired Taylor Harbin on a flyout to end the threat.
Gustafson worked a perfect ninth inning to close out the game.
Georgia Tech will take a week off for spring semester final exams and will return to action next Friday when the Yellow Jackets open a three-game series with Florida Atlantic.