May 25, 2002
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Robby Read and two relievers combined on a six-hitter, and Jerrod Brown drove in three runs to lead top-seeded Florida State past Georgia Tech, 7-4, Saturday afternoon and eliminate the Yellow Jackets from the Atlantic Coast Conference baseball tournament at Florida Power Park.
The Seminoles (55-12), who won their 21st consecutive game, moved into Saturday night’s title game against the winner of Saturday afternoon’s elimination game between Clemson and Wake Forest. That winner must defeat FSU twice to gain the ACC championship. Tech (46-14) returns home to await news Monday on where it will play its regional games in the NCAA Tournament.
Florida State took advantage of two Tech errors to score five times in the first two innings and then coasted behind the pitching of Read (8-1) and relievers Daniel Davidson and Daniel Hodges. Eric Patterson booted a ground ball by Stephen Drew to start the game, and FSU made the Jackets pay with a run-scoring single from Blair McCaleb and a two-run double by Tony Richie.
The Seminoles added a pair of runs in the second, taking advantage of a pair of walks from losing pitcher Brian Burks (9-6), one with the bases loaded after a two-our fielding error by third baseman Matthew Boggs. Ryan Barthelemy, who had three hits in the game, drove in one with a single in the second.
Brown drove in a run in the second on a bases-loaded walk, singled home a run in the fourth and plated the final Seminole score in the sixth on a ground out.
Tech chipped back with unearned runs in the fourth and fifth innings. Jeremy Slayden singled and scored two batters later when Drew threw away a double-play chance at first. Wes Rynders walked, stole second, reached third on an error and scored on Patterson’s ground ball in the fifth. The Jackets added two more runs in the eighth on three straight hits, including a run-scoring double by Matt Murton, and a sacrifice fly by Jason Perry, to make it 7-4.
Tech threatened again in the ninth with a single from Rynders and a double by pinch-hitter Brandon Boggs with one out against Hodges. But the Seminole closer got Patterson and Victor Menocal to fly out to end the game and earn his 10th save.
Read was not partcilarly sharp in his five innings of work, walking five batters, but he held Tech to just one hit and struck out three to earn the win. Davidson provided solid relief for three innings, giving up two runs on three hits, before Hodges closed the deal in the ninth for the Seminoles.
Burks labored from the beginning, giving up six runs on seven hits and three walks in four innings. Only two of the runs against Burks were earned. Aaron Walker finished the game, allowing a run on two hits over four innings.