March 10, 2011
ATLANTA – The Georgia Tech softball team (13-4) puts its six-game winning streak on the line this weekend at it hosts the Springhill Suites Buckhead Classic., March 11-13, at Mewborn Field. The Yellow Jackets will welcome Belmont (5-11), Bowling Green (2-10), Georgia State (9-11) and Penn State (8-6).
2011 Springhill Suites Buckhead Classic
Friday, March 11
Bowling Green vs. Penn State, 2 p.m.
Georgia Tech vs. Bowling Green, 4:30 p.m.
Penn State vs. Georgia State, 7 p.m.
Saturday, March 12
Belmont vs. Bowling Green, 11 a.m.
Bowling Green vs. Georgia State, 1:30 p.m.
Georgia State vs. Belmont, 4 p.m.
Penn State vs. Georgia Tech, 6:30 p.m.
Sunday, March 13
Belmont vs. Penn State, 10 a.m.
Georgia Tech vs. Belmont, 12:30 p.m.
Georgia State vs. Georgia Tech, 3 p.m.
Perk Closing In On 200: Georgia Tech head coach Sharon Perkins is now just four wins away from 200 in her career and could reach that milestone as early as Sunday. Perkins, who has won the ACC Coach of the Year Award in each of the last two seasons, is 196-73 (.782) in her four-plus seasons at Tech. She has led the Jackets to four straight NCAA Tournament, the first Super Regional (2009) in school history and the ACC regular season and tournament title in each of the past two years.
Depth Throughout The Line-Up: All anyone asked in the off-season was “who will replace Jen Yee?” Well it has been a team effort. Through the first 17 games this year, depth has been a key for Tech throughout the line-up. Eight of the nine regular starters are batting at least .325. Tech is hitting .331 as a team and has a slugging percentage of .587. No one is going to match Yee’s 29 home runs from last season, but five players have hit at least three so far in 2011 and f12ive different players have driven in double-digit runs.
Freshman Hayley Downs leads the team in hitting at .429 and has started in eight games. Sophomore Hope Rush (.405), junior Shannon Bear (.405), freshman Alysha Rudnik (.385), senior Christy Jones (.370), senior Kristine Priebe (.347), junior Kelsi Weseman (.347) and junior Kate Kuzma (.325) are all part of that deep and balanced line-up.
The Yellow Jackets have hit 25 home runs as a team and are out-scoring the opposition 89-35.
Jackets Off And Running: Lost in the high batting averages has been the resurgence of the running game in 2011. Tech has already stolen 26 bases (26-for-28) led by Jones’ 12 in as many chances at the top of the order. The Wichita, Kan., native is currently fifth in Tech history with 74 in her career. Freshman Ashley Thomas is second on the team with five stolen bases (5-for-5) while Kuzma and Downs have swiped three apiece. In addition to the stolen bases, the Yellow Jackets also have three triples this far in 2011.
Depth On The Pitching Staff As Well:Senior Kristen Adkins leads a very deep pitching staff as well as the two-time ACC Pitcher of the Week is 6-2 with a 0.95 ERA. Adkins has 51 strikeouts in 51.1 innings and is holding opponents to a .224 batting average thus far. She has two complete-game shutouts and has been part of three others.
Rush, a third-team All-American in 2010, is 4-2 thus far with a 1.45 ERA. She is holding opponents to a .201 batting average. Freshman Lindsey Anderson is 3-0 as well with a 3.56 ERA.