March 22, 2011
ATHENS, Ga. – Junior Matt Skole drove in a career-high eight runs on five hits to power the 12th-ranked Georgia Tech baseball team over arch-rival Georgia, 15-6, on Tuesday night at Foley Field.
Georgia Tech (18-4, 6-0 ACC) extended its win streak to 13 games overall, and four straight against the Bulldogs (9-12, 1-2 SEC) dating back to the 2009 season.
“He [Skole] is a good hitter and it was just a question of time as to when he was going to get hot,” head coach Danny Hall said. “We have been fortunate that some other guys have been hot around him and contributed, and now its his turn to step in there.”
Skole’s eight RBI were the most by a player in the Atlantic Coast Conference this season, as he belted two home runs, including a grand slam on the night. He was a perfect 5-for-5 at the plate, and also drew a walk.
The hits, home runs and runs batted in were all career bests for the junior third baseman who also recorded his 50th career multiple hit game.
“I felt good tonight, that’s for sure,” Skole said. “But it’s a team effort. I got a lot of pitches to hit tonight.”
The Jackets recorded 15 total hits on the night, facing nine different Georgia pitchers. Tech has scored 59 runs in the last five games combined, with double-digit run totals in four of them.
Freshman Matthew Grimes (4-1) earned the win on the mound after holding the bulldogs to two runs on five hits over six innings.
Skole gave the Jackets a 1-0 lead in the top of the fourth inning with a solo home run to right field off of Georgia starter Chase Hawkins.
Hawkins had held the Jackets to just one hit through the first three innings prior to Skole’s blast.
The Bulldogs responded with two runs on two outs to take a 2-1 lead in the bottom half of the inning. Georgia’s Kyle Farmer and Kevin Ruiz had back-to-back RBI hits off of Grimes bring in two runs.
The Jackets wouldn’t stay behind for long, as junior Jake Davies sent a solo homer to left field to leadoff the fifth frame, tying it at 2-2 and lifting the Georgia starter.
Georgia’s John Herman was credited with the loss, and fell to 1-3 on the year. He faced just four batters in relief, but was tagged with the two runs after putting the two go-ahead runners on base.
Tech would go on to break the game open with three more runs in the sixth inning for a 7-2 lead. Freshman Kyle Wren brought home a run with a single up the middle, before Skole drove in two more with his fourth hit of the night on a single to right field.
The Jackets put two more across in the seventh behind a wild pitch and a RBI single by sophomore Sam Dove.
Georgia attempted a rally with four runs on five hits in the eighth, but sophomore Luke Bard scattered two hits over the final 1 2/3 innings to hold the Bulldogs in check.
Skole’s grand slam brought in four of the final six runs for Tech in the ninth inning. The Woodstock, Ga. native hit his 41st and 42nd career home runs, moving him into a tie for seventh place in the Tech record books with Billy Parham (1986-88) and Mark Fischer (1995-97).
The Jackets will continue ACC play this weekend, traveling to Miami for a three-game series in Coral Gables, Fla. Tech and Miami are the only two remaining unbeaten teams in ACC play.