Tonight will likely be the last game at Russ Chandler Stadium for Tech’s three seniors. Should the Jackets win tonight, it would seem most probable that Tech will play Florida in Gainesville in the Super Regional. That announcement will come out much later tonight.
Luke Murton, Chris House and Jason Haniger sat down with me a few minutes before the team started stretching to share their favorite moments during their time at the Rusty C.
They weren’t given a lot of time to think about it, but all three came up with mostly the same moments:
1. Haniger’s walk-off grand slam to defeat UNC this year.
Luke Murton describes the moment:
“One of the most packed games we’ve ever had. There was a ton of people here. It was a big series for us and they had won the first game, so to win the series we obviously had to win the next two.
“In the Saturday game Jason Haniger was 0-for-5 and then the bases loaded. He was a having a tough day. I think he had two strikes [actually 2-2 count, sixth pitch of the at bat] and when he hit the home run…
“We’ve hit a couple of walk-off home runs in my career but that one was by far the biggest one we’ve had. That was an awesome moment for the team.”
2. House noted beating Florida State on Senior Day this season as one of his favorite moments:
“That was awesome. Coming from behind in the ninth inning. Big win for us, big series win too because it was tied 1-1 coming into Senior Day.
“Senior Day was great because I led off the inning and got on base and scored the first run. Murton walked with the bases loaded so he drove me in there. That was great.”
3. All three listed beating College of Charleston their freshman years to make it to Omaha and the College World Series as another favorite team memory. It was also Murton’s favorite memory of a personal achievement:
“It was the clinching game. We were playing well and we were winning easily by five runs, six runs.
“I was hitting sixth on the day. I was hitting around a lot of the older guys. A lot of the seniors and some juniors that were definitely going to be gone in the draft. The fans were basically saying their goodbyes to them because it’s their last game at home. And it was just really awesome to see what those guys had done for the program and the way the fans treated them on the way out. A couple of the guys got chants of one more year.
“Being in between them, being a freshman, they couldn’t just stand up and give everybody a standing ovation and not give me one. So, they stood up and gave me a standing ovation when I came up because I was between them all. It was pretty funny but still pretty cool.”
Haniger said he’s also miss the ground crew: ”The field is one of the big things. Our crew out here does a great job of taking care of it.”
Feel free to share you favorite memories in the comments sections and check back for updates throughout the game, scheduled to start at 7 p.m.