Tech baseball rolling after series win over UNC

The outlook for Georgia Tech’s baseball team’s season improved Saturday night. It looked even better Sunday.

After a five-run rally in the ninth inning beat North Carolina Saturday, the Yellow Jackets took the series Sunday with a 3-0 win Sunday to take the series 2-1. Tech, ranked No. 13 by Baseball America, jumped from No. 9 to No. 8 in estimated RPI and bettered its chances of earning one of the eight national bids, which would keep the Jackets at home through the NCAA super regionals. More importantly, it gave a lift to a team that, aside from a non-conference series sweep last weekend, had been sliding.

“It’s a huge win for us momentum-wise, especially last night when we got the big win,” first baseman Jake Davies said. “Hopefully, that’ll carry over into the NCAA tournament and the ACC tournament.”

Prior to their three-game sweep of Illinois-Chicago and Tuesday win over Savannah State, Tech was 10-10 in its last 20 games, including series losses to Clemson and Virginia. Davies said he thought the team had lacked focus and had gotten lazy. Going into the bottom of the ninth Saturday night, Tech was down 8-4 and three outs away from losing the series to the No. 17 Tar Heels.

In order:

Zane Evans led off with a single. Andrew Smith was relieved by Michael Morin.

Kyle Wren doubled, moving Evans to third.

(After Evans singled, the game production staff played the “Imperial Death March” from Star Wars, and kept doing so throughout the inning. Funny.)

Jacob Esch walked, loading the bases. R.C. Orlan relieved Morin.

Matt Skole struck out for the first out.

Davies singled, scoring Evans and Wren. Esch scored and Davies went to second on a fielding error. Score 8-7. Connor Winn went in to pinch run for Davies.

(Davies, who had struck out three times prior to the ninth inning, said Orlan went heavy on fastballs in striking out Skole. “My first thought was he’s going to try to be cocky and try to throw a fastball past me,” Davies said. “Luckily he did and I was preparing for it and I got the barrel on it.”)

Greg Holt relieved Orlan.

Winn went to third on a wild pitch, Sam Dove walked.

Mott Hyde singled, scoring Winn and putting Dove on second. Score now 8-8.

Daniel Palka pulled the first pitch down the first-base line to score Dove and end the game 9-8.

“It’s just sometimes in baseball, there’s just, one guy gets one and another guy gets on and something just clicks,” Davies said.

Worth noting: It was Tech’s first walk-off win of the year. Likewise, UNC was 35-0 this season going into the ninth with the lead. Palka, who hit an eighth-inning home run to make the score 8-4, was 4-for-5.

Sunday, Buck Farmer and Luke Bard combined on a five-hit shutout, the first time all season that the Tar Heels have been shut out. It was coach Danny Hall’s 300th ACC win, making him only the fourth coach in league history to reach that milestone.

Tech is 37-15 and 20-7 in the ACC. UNC is 40-12 and 17-10. The Tar Heels finish the regular season next weekend at home with top-ranked Virginia, while Tech will go on the road to Virginia Tech (29-23, 10-17).

Davies said the plan is to “beat them three times and come back and win the ACC tournament. That’s our outlook right now.”

Pretty good outlook.

20 comments Add your comment

beesness

May 16th, 2011
9:41 am

Next time you use rankings do not use baseball america. 9 out of 10 times they have tech lowest in the polls and people rarely mention their rankings. Gt was ranked high as ninth this weekend and same for unc. 17th for unc is way too low

Cuttysark

May 16th, 2011
9:47 am

Need to finish up the regular season strong against the other Tech this coming weekend to set up for a run to Omaha.

juvenal

May 16th, 2011
10:03 am

Ken, is our chance at a regional good, given history, facilities,location, prior good attendance………?

Warren Z.

May 16th, 2011
10:14 am

Baseball America is the only ranking I take remotely seriously. And actually, none of the rankings matter at all, RPI is only thing that matters. Tech is back up to No. 8 there.

[...] post by News Sources and software by Elliott Back Comments [...]

DawginLex

May 16th, 2011
10:34 am

juvenal,

you survive your trip to Lex?

Lots of rain huh?

Welcome to my world.

Dawgs didn’t like it either. Lost 2 of 3 and have hosed themselves for an NCAA bid barring a late run.

Oakland

May 16th, 2011
10:36 am

I’ve been to one college baseball game this year and that was at Georgia Tech. Very fan friendly stadium and nice playing field.

juvenal

May 16th, 2011
11:02 am

barely,weddings have changed a lot since i was a kid….

Jackets 2011

May 16th, 2011
11:03 am

@DawginLex
How did your babes do?
I was watching a 4-0 lead evaporate and trying hard to pull for them.
Nine out of ten in football makes it difficult to pull for even your female teams.
Though I haven’t had that problem with the Gymdawgs.

ManUp...

May 16th, 2011
11:17 am

“The Rusty C” (no actual rust since the new one is aluminum) has one of the best college baseball atmosphere’s there is. And (just like with Grant Field) has THE BEST night game views in the college sports world. Oh yeah, and the team has been incredible to watch this year, the family atmosphere is cool, the lax stadium rules make it easy to frat hard during the games, and it’s gotta be the most bang for your sporting event buck in the entire city. Students get in free with their ID…and even some alumni.

Go Jackets!

DawginLex

May 16th, 2011
11:21 am

girls lost in bottom of ninth on a walkoff HR

B-ball lost 2 of 3

Expecting to hear that King, Harmon and Jenkins are ineligible and that Crowell must go JUCO and that Dillon Lee commits to FSU

I need a diet coke

78 DAWG

May 16th, 2011
11:29 am

Lex if Crowell has to go JUCO, I’ll have to take back a lot of things I said about Richt, cause that’d mean he really did get rid of Ealey for the right reasons.

spider

May 16th, 2011
1:30 pm

we will probably roll to a series loss against va tech, sorry but this is on gt sports team that has let me down so many times over the last 20 years when it comes to crunch time or when ranking get high, but im praying this will be the year..go jackets.

Ken Sugiura

May 16th, 2011
1:57 pm

Juvenal – I confess I don’t have much insight. I can certainly hedge and say they’re on the bubble for a national seed. for what it’s worth, I’m told that the boydsworld.com site is pretty accurate with predicting national seeds and it says that tech needs to finish 3-1 to get one.
by the way, i think crowell has qualified.

GT hulk

May 16th, 2011
2:03 pm

Dosent matter, by time gets to NCAA’s, Hall will choke, probably lose to Wofford and Georgia.

GT hulk

May 16th, 2011
2:06 pm

Spider, I agree with you, when it really counts, Hall will choke.

Not a Hewitt Fan

May 16th, 2011
4:26 pm

Worst thing to hapeen fot Tech baseball is to be rated…..biggest choker coach @ Tech

gt4ever

May 16th, 2011
6:07 pm

Anything can and usually happens in Baseball……. I think this team has as good a chance at making happen in CWS…. Time will tell…

KC

May 16th, 2011
10:58 pm

Wait is it news that Tech baseball is in an end of year slump? Isn’t that their normal MO?

Crazy Robert

May 18th, 2011
6:39 am

4 errors last night; that’s a comfort.