Georgia Tech Baseball: Jackets Lose a Heartbreaker to In-State Rivals, 1-0

Danny Karnik/Georgia Tech Athletics

Georgia Tech only managed 3 hits (two by Thomas Smith), and yet still was in a position to earn a win before dropping the game to their most hated rivals.

Senior RHP Alex Cruz gave 5 innings of 5-hit, scoreless ball, and fellow Senior RHP Jonathan Thomas added on 3 innings of scoreless ball in Athens on Tuesday night, and yet it wasn't enough for the Jackets to bring home a victory.

Through 7 innings, Georgia Tech (7-5) was holding strong, refusing to give up a run without having scored one themselves. In the top of the 8th, Thomas Smith started Tech off with a single, reaching second on an error by the uga Catcher. After a strikeout, he advanced to 3rd on a Mitch Earnest groundout, before being erased by a Daniel Spingola flyout. The only other real scoring opportunity for the Jackets came in the fifth, where Smith was on third and DH A.J. Murray was on second with 2 outs, before Earnest flew out to end the frame.

In the bottom of the ninth, with 2 outs, uga (6-6) had a man on first with two outs. On an attempted steal, the throw got away after, apparently, the batter got in the way of the throw. Per RamblinWreck.com, here is the story:

Tech turned to senior Dusty Isaacs, and on the first pitch he delivered, UGA pinch-runner McLaughlin broke for second. The throw from catcher Mitch Earnest sailed into center, and McLaughlin was able to take third. Tech argued for interference on the batter.

"He definitely hit something and my catcher’s generally not going to throw the ball into centerfield," said Hall. "The umpire felt that their guy was in the box, and until I see a replay I’m not going to know. It’s a tough way to lose a game for sure."

uga's Sean McLaughlin advanced to third before scoring on a Brandon Stephens single up the middle on the next pitch, giving Tech the heartbreaking 1-0 loss. The loss is the Jackets' third straight in midweek games, following losses at Georgia Southern (2/19) and vs Kennesaw State (2/25). While 7-2 in weekend games, including two straight sweeps of UNC-Greensboro and Bowling Green State, the Jackets have yet to win a midweek game -- something they're going to have to overcome if they are to accomplish their season's goals. Similarly, they have yet to beat an in-state opponent in three tries against three different teams. They'll get their next shot two weeks from Tuesday when they visit Kennesaw State for a rematch. Georgia Tech hosts Wake Forest for a three-game series to open ACC play this weekend, beginning with a 4:00pm game on Friday.

Where's your confidence at with this team? Is it bothersome to you that they've lost their first three midweek games, all to in-state teams? Can this team really ascend to its desired heights this season?

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