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No. 7 Georgia Tech Hosts No. 16 Miami in Regular Season Finale

May 17, 2006

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ATLANTA–Seventh-ranked Georgia Tech (40-13, 17-10 ACC) hosts No. 16 Miami (34-17, 16-11) for a three-game Atlantic Coast Conference series this weekend at Russ Chandler Stadium. Gametimes are 7 p.m. on Thursday and Friday, and 1 p.m. on Saturday. Thursday and Friday will be televised by FSN South, while the regular season finale on Saturday will be broadcast on the ACC Regional Network.

The Yellow Jackets and Hurricanes are in the middle of a tight race within the ACC as the regular season closes this weekend. Just three win separate second (19) through sixth (16) places in the league standings.

Pitching Matchups: (Georgia Tech vs. Miami)
THU: RHP Blake Wood (8-3, 4.91) vs. LHP Scott Maine (9-2, 4.48)
FRI: LHP David Duncan (7-2, 5.35) vs. RHP Carlos Gutierrez (9-5, 3.63)
SAT: LHP Ryan Turner (3-3, 5.44) vs. TBA

GAME COVERAGE: Televised by FSN South on Thursday and Friday, and on the ACC Regional Network on Saturday. Radio coverage on Thursday and Friday available on WREK-FM (91.1 FM in Atlanta / online at: www.wrek.org). Radio coverage on Saturday available on 790 The Zone (790 AM / www.790thezone.com). Live statistics available at www.ramblinwreck.com.

Georgia Tech vs. Miami
Miami leads Georgia Tech, 37-17-2, in a series that dates to 1958. The Hurricanes hold a 12-9 lead in games played in Atlanta.

Last season in the first meeting as ACC oppoenets at Coral Gables, the Yellow Jackets dropped the first game of the series, 20-1, before coming back to win the final two games by scores of 17-7 and 11-10.

Tech is 7-14 against Miami under head coach Danny Hall.

Morris Returns to Atlanta
Miami head coach Jim Morris returns to Atlanta for the fourth time since leaving Georgia Tech following the 1993 season. Morris also brought his Miami teams to Atlanta in 1998, 2002 and 2004.

In his 12-year tenure as Tech’s head coach, Morris went 504-244 and led the Yellow Jackets to four ACC Championships (1985-88) and nine consecutive NCAA Regional berths. Morris, who left as the school’s all-time winningest coach before being passed by Danny Hall in 2005, was inducted into the Georgia Tech Athletic Hall of Fame in 1999.

Offensive Short Hops
Third in NCAA in Scoring: Georgia Tech ranks fifth in the nation, averaging 9.1 runs per game. Troy (9.5) and James Madison (9.3) rank first and second.

Runs, Runs, Runs: The Yellow Jackets have scored 179 runs in the last 18 games, averaging 9.9 runs per game.

Bats Warm With the Weather: After hitting .299 through the first 24 games of the season (though Mar. 26), Tech’s offense has exploded by batting .341 over the last 29 games. Tech scored 8.6 runs per game in the first 24 games of the year before averaging 9.6 runs per game over the last 29 games.

Comeback Kids: Georgia Tech swept #5 Florida State, coming from behind in all three games. Tech rallied from a 6-0 deficit on Friday to win 15-8, trailed 3-2 in game two before winning 10-4, and fell behind 3-1 only to win 8-7 in the finale. Tech also trailed in all three games in a sweep of Duke (May 12-14). The Yellow Jackets have come from behind to win on 18 occasions this season, including 16 times when Tech has trailed in the first three innings of the game.

Inside the RPI
Georgia Tech enters the weekend ranked fourth in the nation in the RPI. Clemson, Rice and Texas rank first through third.

The Atlantic Coast Conference is well represented in the RPI, with eight teams ranked among the top 19 in the nation. Joining Clemson and Georgia Tech are North Carolina (7), Virginia (9), Miami (12), NC State (14), Florida State (15) and Wake Forest (19).

Blackwood Joins Elite Company
Senior Steven Blackwood enters the final weekend of the regular season with 210 career RBI and 209 runs. Blackwood and former National Player of the Year Jason Varitek are the only two players in Georgia Tech history to top 200 in both RBI and runs.

Blackwood enters the final weeks of his collegiate career ranked among Tech’s all-time leaders in doubles (5th, 57), RBI (6th, 210), at bats (7th, 801), games played (7th, 227), runs (8th, 209) and hits (11th, 267).

Bullish on the Bullpen
Georgia Tech’s pitching staff has been bolstered by stong efforts from the bullpen. Relievers have pitched 218.0 innings in 53 games, posting a 3.01 ERA and a 17-3 record with 14 saves.

Over the last 21 games, Tech’s bullpen has allowed 19 earned runs in 90.0 innings, posting a 1.90 ERA and holding opponents to a .192 batting average. In that span, Tech’s opponents have pitched 93.1 innings in relief and have allowed 99 runs.

Bullpen Tale of the Tape

Overall         W-L     SV      ERA     IP      ER      Opp avg.

Georgia Tech 17-3 14 3.01 218.0 73 .231 Opponents 6-8 7 7.94 224.1 198 .308

Last 21 Games W-L SV ERA IP ER Opp avg. Georgia Tech 6-2 6 1.90 90.0 19 .192 Opponents 2-6 2 7.62 93.1 79 .313

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