April 3, 2011
DURHAM, N.C. – Juniors Jacob Esch and Matt Skole had four hits apiece and drove in a combined five runs to lead the sixth-ranked Georgia Tech baseball team to an 11-5 win over Duke in the rubber-match on Sunday at Durham Bulls Athletic Park.
The Yellow Jackets (23-6, 11-1 ACC) won their seventh series of the season, and have now won 10 straight series dating back to May 9, 2010. Duke falls to 16-14 overall and 3-9 in the ACC.
The first four batters in the Tech lineup all recorded multiple hits on Sunday, led by Esch and Skole. Freshman Kyle Wren and junior Jake Davies each chipped in with two in the Jackets’ 17-hit assault.
The four hits for Esch were a career-high, as the shortstop had three of them go for extra bases. He also scored three times and had three RBI in an all-around solid game.
Sophomore Buck Farmer (5-1) improved to 5-0 on the season after yielding three runs (two earned) on seven hits over five innings.
Tech took advantage of the deep gaps in the outfield at Durham Bulls Athletic Park, sandwiching an RBI grounder by Skole between triples from Esch and Davies to take a 2-0 lead in the first inning. Esch’s triple was his second of the season, while Davies’ RBI three-bagger was the first of his career.
The two runs lifted Duke starting pitcher Mark Lumpa with just two outs to start the game. Lumpa (0-2) was credited with the loss after allowing the two runs on two hits.
Tech would go on to bat around for five more runs on five hits in the third inning, ignited by Esch’s leadoff double to extend the lead to 7-0. Sophomore Brandon Thomas closed the scoring in the inning with a single to right field that scored two of the runs.
Duke got on the board with two runs of its own in the fourth inning, both coming on RBI singles to right field by Angelo LaBruna and Michael Rosenfeld.
Esch’s had belted his third extra base hit of the game in the top half of the fifth inning, as his double to right field scored freshmen Mott Hyde and Wren for two more runs. Skole singled up the middle on the next at-bat to make it 10-2.
Duke rallied for three runs over the next two frames, with one in the fifth and two in the sixth on RBI hits by Marcus Stroman and Rosenfeld to cut the lead to 10-5.
The Jackets will return to action on Tuesday with a midweek game at Kennesaw State. First pitch is at 6 p.m. at Stillwell Stadium on the Kennesaw State campus.