No. 4 Tech Baseball Sweeps Georgia Southern, 15-6 and 5-4
Yellow Jackets improve to 2-0 on the season.
Feb. 15, 2004
STATESBORO, Ga. - Georgia Tech freshman Wes Hodges hit a grand slam in game one and delivered a two-out RBI single in the top of the 10th inning in game two as the fourth-ranked Yellow Jackets (2-0) swept a doubleheader from the Eagles (2-3) on Sunday afternoon at J.I. Clements Stadium, 15-6 and 6-5. Tech used a nine-run seventh inning in the first game, while the Yellow Jackets rallied for five runs in the final four innings in game two.
Tech ran its streak to 16 consecutive wins over Georgia Southern in Statesboro since the 1997 season.
IN GAME ONE, a grand slam from freshman Wes Hodges highlighted a nine run seventh inning as the Yellow Jackets broke open a 3-1 game and cruised to a 15-6 victory.
Micah Owings (1-0) earned the win in his first start of the year by tossing seven strong innings. The right-hander allowed just one earned run on seven hits while striking out five and not issuing a walk. Freshman Ryan Turner made his collegiate debut and struck out the side in one inning of work in relief.
The game remained scoreless until Steven Blackwood gave Tech a 1-0 led with a solo home run in the top of the fourth inning. But Georgia Southern's Grant Burruss tied the game with a solo shot in the bottom of the inning.
Two runs in the fifth inning, including a RBI single from Blackwood, made the score 3-1 before the Yellow Jackets put the game away with the big seventh inning.
Tech sent 14 hitters to the plate in the seventh inning, which included a two-run single from Clifton Remole and RBI hits from Blackwood and Tyler Greene. Hodges grand slam, the first home run of his collegiate career, capped the scoring in the inning.
The Yellow Jackets added three more runs in the top of the ninth inning on a two-run double from Cameron Lane and a RBI groundout by Mike Nickeas.
Blackwood led the Tech offense with three hits and three RBI, while Remole, Hodges and Greene each had two hits in the game. Eight of Tech's nine starters had at least one hit in the game. Greg Dowling, Brandon Long and Brandon Ponder each had two hits for the Eagles.
Georgia Southern starter Brian Harrison (1-1) took the loss, allowing six runs on eight hits in six-plus innings of work.
WITH TECH TRAILING 4-2 IN THE NIGHTCAP, Brandon Boggs blasted a two-run homer with one out in the top of the ninth inning to tie the score at 4-4. Jeremy Slayden drew a one-out walk before Boggs battled back from an 0-2 count to tie the game with a blast over the right field fence.
The Eagles immediately mounted a rally in the bottom of the ninth inning when Flint Wipke led off the inning with a single and Brandon Burnsed advanced him to second base with a sacrifice bunt. But Tech reliever John Goodman came out of the bullpen to retire Logan Phillips with a ground ball and strike out Brandon Ponder to escape the trouble.
Tech's Tyler Greene led off the top of the tenth with a single through the left side and then moved to second base on a balk. A groundout from Blackwood moved Greene to third base, and Micah Owings drew a walk to put runners on the corners with only one out. GSU reliever Dustin Evans struck out Remole for the second out of the inning, but Hodges delivered a clutch, two-out RBI single to give the Yellow Jackets a 5-4 lead.
The Eagles again mounted a rally in the bottom of the 10th inning when James Payne laced a one-out single to left field. But Goodman retired Dowling on a pop up and Ryan Self retired Burruss on a deep fly ball to center field to preserve the 5-4 Tech victory.
Goodman (1-0) earned the win in his first collegiate appearance after escaping a jam in the bottom of the ninth inning. Self, who recorded the final out of the game, earned his first career save.
Georgia Southern reliever Dustin Evans (0-2) took the loss, allowing three runs in three innings of work.
Georgia Southern jumped to a 4-0 lead after the first three innings of the game. The Eagles put three runs on the board in the first inning with a pair of home runs, a solo shot from Long to lead off the frame and a two-run blast from Burruss, his second of the day. Georgia Southern put an unearned run on the board in the third inning when James Payne walked and scored on shortstop Tyler Greene's throwing error.
Meanwhile, Georgia Southern starter John Carroll held the Tech offense at bay as he faced just two batters over the minimum over the first five innings. The right-hander held the Yellow Jackets to two runs on seven hits in seven innings but got no decision in the game.
Tech broke through in the seventh inning with two runs to cut the lead to 4-2. Remole led off the inning with a single, and a single from Jeremy Slayden put runners on first and second with one out. After a wild pitch advanced both baserunners, Remole scored when Brandon Boggs legged out an infield hit to second base. Hawranick was hit by a pitch to load the bases and Patterson drove in the second run of the inning with a sacrifice fly, but Carroll retired Greene on a fly out to end the rally.
Tech starter Brian Burks allowed four runs on six hits in four-plus innings but did not figure in the decision. Reliever Andrew Kown held Georgia Southern scoreless for four innings, striking out four.
Georgia Tech will host Savannah State on Wednesday at 4 p.m. in the Yellow Jackets' home opener at Russ Chandler Stadium. Live statistics will be available at www.ramblinwreck.com.