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Payne Leads No. 14 Tech Baseball to DH Sweep of Iona

Feb. 19, 2005

Box Score Game 1 Box Score Game 2

ATLANTA – Danny Payne went 6-for-7 with a home run and six RBI in two games to lead No. 14 Georgia Tech (5-1) to a 9-3 and 16-5 doubleheader sweep of visiting Iona (0-3) on Saturday afternoon at Russ Chandler Stadium.

The Yellow Jackets extended their winning streak to five games after dropping the season opener last week.

Tech had 19 hits in the doubleheader, and the Yellow Jackets drew 23 walks from Iona pitchers en route to 25 runs.

Payne finished the two game with six hits, including a home run, two doubles, and three singles, to go with six runs scored and six RBI. Steven Blackwood added five RBI, and Whit Robbins had three hits and drove in three runs.

IN GAME ONE, Payne went 3-for-4 with a home run and three RBI to pace the Yellow Jackets to a 9-3 win over the Gaels.

Tech was outhit 11-7, but the Yellow Jackets drew 10 walks. Tyler Greene had two hits and drove in two runs, and Robbins added two RBI. Payne fell a triple short of hitting for the cycle.

Tech starter Lee Hyde (1-0) pitched well to earn his first win of the year. The southpaw worked six innings and allowed two runs on seven hits. He issued one walk and struck out three. Relievers Tim Gustafson and Brian Futral worked the final three innings and did not allow an earned run.

After the Gaels took a 1-0 lead in the top of the third on Nick Capowiski’s RBI groundout, the Yellow Jackets jumped on Iona starter Chris Lopez (0-1) for five runs in the bottom of the inning, including a two-run double from Robbins and a RBI triple from Greene.

A solo home run from Payne, his first of the year, made the score 6-2 in the fourth inning, and RBI hits from Payne and Greene extended the lead to 8-2 in the sixth.

Wes Hodges hit a solo home run, his team leading third of the year, in the seventh inning.

James LaSala led the Gaels with a 3-for-4 performance, and Dan Rodriguez added two hits.


IN GAME TWO, Payne went 3-for-3 with three RBI and three runs scored, and Blackwood and Michael Fisher each drove in four runs to lead Georgia Tech to a 12-2 win and three-game series sweep of Iona.

Tech starter Blake Wood (2-0) won for the second time in as many starts, working five innings and allowing one run on four hits.

Fisher went 3-for-4 with four RBI and three runs scored and Robbins added two hits. Iona pitchers issued 13 walks in the game.

The Gaels took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning on LaSala’s sacrifice fly, but the Yellow Jackets answered with two runs on a balk and sacrifice fly in the third inning to take a 2-1 lead.

Tech broke the game open with six runs in the fourth inning to take an 8-1 lead. The Yellow Jackets sent 10 batters to the plate in the inning, highlighted by RBI doubles from Jeff Kindel and Fisher and a RBI single from Payne.

The Yellow Jackets added four runs in the fifth to make the score 12-1. Payne and Blackwood each had two-run singles as Tech batted around for the second consecutive inning.

The Gaels’ Mike Tonatore hit a pinch hit solo home run to make the score 12-2 in the top of the sixth.

Tech scored four unearned runs in the seventh inning, highlighted by a bases-clearing double from Fisher, to extend the lead to 16-2.

Iona starter Nick Conte (0-1) took the loss in the nightcap, allowing five runs in 3.1 innings.

Georgia Tech returns to action on Tuesday when the Yellow Jackets visit Georgia State in a 3 p.m. contest. Tech hosts Rutgers for a three game series next weekend at Russ Chandler Stadium.


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