May 10, 2002
ATLANTA – Matt Murton’s RBI single capped a four-run uprising in the bottom of the ninth inning as ninth-ranked Georgia Tech (40-10) defeated visiting Miami (24-24), 7-6, on Friday evening at Russ Chandler Stadium. The victory, the first for Tech when trailing after eight innings this season, gave the Yellow Jackets a 27-2 record at their new home park in 2002.
Trailing 6-3 after eight and a half innings, Tech sent seven batters to the plate in the bottom of the ninth inning without recording an out after Miami sent closer George Huguet to the mound. After Brandon Boggs singled and Matthew Boggs doubled to lead off the inning, Clifton Remole drove in the first run after a throw from Miami third baseman Kevin Howard pulled first baseman Jim Burt off the bag. A bloop single to left field on an 11-pitch at bat by Eric Patterson loaded the bases, and Tech tied the scored after Victor Menocal was hit by a pitch and Jeremy Slayden drew a walk on a 3-2 pitch. After Huget was relieved by Vince Vazquez, Murton hit a deep fly ball to right field that drove in Patterson with the game winning run.
“We didn’t play very good baseball until the ninth inning,” said Tech coach Danny Hall. “We had some outstanding at bats in the ninth inning and because of those at bats we were able to win the game. The bullpen came in and got some key outs, and that kept us within striking distance going to the bottom of the ninth inning.”
Tech reliever Philip Perry (3-0) earned the win after recording the final out in the top of the ninth inning. Perry, Jeff Watchko and Aaron Walker teamed to work 2.2 innings out of the bullpen without allowing an earned run.
Huguet (6-2) took the loss, allowing four runs without recording an out in the bottom of the ninth inning.
Miami jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the second inning with a RBI single from Richard Gianotti and a safety squeeze bunt from Paco Figueroa. Tech answered with three runs in the bottom of the fourth on RBI hits from Brandon Boggs and Remole, and a sacrifice fly from Tyler Parker.
The Hurricanes immediately tied the game at 3-3 in the top of the fifth on a RBI single from Brad Safchik. Miami score three times in the seventh, two of the runs scoring on a fielding error by Tech second baseman Eric Patterson with two outs, to take a 6-3 lead. That score stood until the bottom of the ninth inning when the Yellow Jackets mounted their game-winning rally.
Georgia Tech reached the 40-win plateau for the 15th time in school history and for the seventh time in nine years under head coach Danny Hall.
Neither starting pitcher figured in the decision. Miami’s Dan Touchet worked six innings and allowed three runs, while Tech’s Kyle Bakker surrendered three earned runs in 6.1 innings of work.
Georgia Tech and Miami will continue the three-game series on Saturday at 7 p.m. The game that will be televised live by Fox Sports Net South and carried live on WREK-Radio (91.1 FM in Atlanta). Live scoring for the entire series will be available at www.ramblinwreck.com.