March 24, 2010
ATLANTA – The third-ranked Georgia Tech baseball team (18-2, 5-1 ACC) scored double digit runs for the fourth straight game, and 12 different players registered a hit in a 19-4 win over Mercer (14-9, 2-1 A-Sun) Wednesday night at Russ Chandler Stadium.
“We’ve had contributions from a lot of different guys,” head coach Danny Hall said. “I think as a team we’ve swung the bat real well, which is a good sign. We’ve got [Jay] Dantzler down a little bit right now, and Brandon Thomas steps in there and has hit the ball real well for us. So that’s good to see.”
The Jackets have now scored double figure runs 10 times this season, and used a 20 hit assault for the second win in two mid-week games against Mercer. Eight Tech players had multiple hits, led by sophomore Matt Skole’s 3-for-5 day at the plate.
Nine of the 20 hits were for extra-bases, while freshman Brandon Thomas, junior Derek Dietrich and junior Cole Leonida all recorded triples. It was the first time since April 24, 2007 that Tech had three triples in the game, and tied the school record.
Dietrich added a double and an RBI in the game.
Freshman Buck Farmer (2-0) earned the win on the mound in the second start of his career, holding Mercer to three runs on six hits in five innings Wednesday. He struck out one as he improved to 2-0 on the season.
After the Bears struck first with a sac fly RBI in the top of the first, the Jackets chased Mercer starter David Randall for sevens runs on seven hits in the second. It was the second straight day Tech scored seven runs in an inning against the Bears, and an inning that saw triples by Leonida and Dietrich, and a double by Skole.
Randall fell to 3-2 on the season after surrendering seven runs – six earned – on seven hits two innings of work.
Tech also singled four times in the inning, highlighted by Thomas’ first career RBI in his second career start at left field. Thomas has played the last two games in place of injured Jay Dantzler.
“I’ve been trying to come to the field everyday ready to play and if I see my name in the lineup, I get my stuff ready to go,” Thomas said. “I come to the field with the same mentality everyday. I work hard before the game and get ready like I want to play and if I’m not in the lineup, I just go about my routine. If I am in the lineup, I do the same thing.”
Thomas then led-off the bottom of the fourth inning with his triple to right center, one of four hits by Tech in an inning that saw six more runs cross for a 13-3 lead.
Junior Jeff Rowland’s leadoff home run to right field in the eighth gave all nine Tech starters a hit in the game, and stretched the lead to 14-3. Rowland has now homered in consecutive games, and has seven on the season.
The Jackets scored three more in the frame, and one more in the seventh before sophomore Connor Winn closed out the scoring on a home run to left field in the eighth.
Freshman Luke Bard, senior Patrick Long, junior Zach Brewster and senior Andrew Robinson closed out the final four innings on the mound, combing to allow just one run on four hits in relief of Farmer.
Tech continues Atlantic Coast Conference play this weekend, with a three-game series at North Carolina in Chapel Hill, N.C. First pitch Friday is at 7 p.m., while the series continues Saturday at 6 p.m. and concludes Sunday at 1 p.m.