March 7, 2014
THE FLATS – Daniel Spingola had three hits and was on base four times, while Thomas Smith’s hitting streak reached nine games, but Wake Forest spoiled Georgia Tech’s ACC opener at Russ Chandler Stadium with a 9-2 victory Friday.
Sophomore starter Jonathan King lasted just two innings for the Yellow Jackets (7-6, 0-1) after walking three batters, and Tech used eight relievers to finish the game. The Demon Deacons (10-4, 1-0) were boosted by a complete-game effort from Jack Fischer.
The Jackets, who allowed more than five runs for the first time this season, led 1-0 after the first and pulled even at 2-2 in the fourth before a six-run inning for the visitors broke the game open.
Fisher yielded 11 hits but limited the damage to just a pair of runs. Matt Gonzalez’s RBI groundout in the first inning scored Spingola, who drew a lead-off walk, moved to second on a wild pitch and to third on a Ryan Peurifoy’s sac bunt.
“We’ve got to score more than two runs when we get 11 hits,” said head coach Danny Hall. “Again we failed to get guys in when they’re in scoring position. Both Spingola and Smith had good days for us, but we need to get more guys involved.”
Smith was 2-for-4 and his RBI single scored Gonzalez, who led off the fourth by rocketing a double off the top of the wall in right field – his sixth two-bagger.
That Tech run answered solo home runs from Charlie Morgan and Will Craig in the third and fourth innings, respectively.
It all came unraveled in the sixth as Wake Forest sent 12 batters to the plate and pounded out five hits and took advantage of two walks and two hit batters. When the dust settled, the six runs put Wake in control for good.
“Five guys reached base that inning with two strikes against them,” said Hall. “We’ve got to do a better job of putting guys away.”
Devin Stanton worked three innings in relief of King and allowed two runs. Jonathan Roberts was hung the loss (0-1). Joe Wiseman, Matt Phillips and Sam Clay worked late scoreless relief for the Jackets.
The series continues on Saturday at 4 p.m. at Russ Chandler Stadium. Those holding men’s basketball tickets for Saturday’s 2 p.m. game versus Virginia Tech at McCamish Pavilion can use their hoops ticket for $2 admission into tomorrow’s baseball game.