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Yellow Jacket Roundup: A Flippin’ Good Week

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When football gets ya down, come check out non-revenue sports.

I am incredibly sad I couldn’t find the file for the aerial of Mewborn at night from the softball Twitter, so let’s go with an old FTRS favorite: platform diving with the flag backdrop.
Danny Karnik/Georgia Tech Athletics

SEAGROVE, FLORIDA - That’s right, it’s Fall Break weekend in Atlanta and yours truly finally got his break. As a result, we have a great idea for Rearview Mirror coming up this week, but, in the meantime, let’s check back in on the Flats to see what five of our teams have been up to this week. Five! Plenty of non-revenue action to go around.
And yes, I’m salty it seems like everyone is playing this weekend as I have to head out of town again. If you get the chance, go check out the Jackets - and if you’re on the east side, Emory is even closer for some Sunday softball. And if you’re farther east, well, try Columbia, South Carolina for some baseball.


Volleyball

Tech (9-7) sweeps Clemson (6-10) 3-0 (25-17, 25-19, 25-20)
Tech (10-7) sweeps VPISU (7-12) 3-0 (25-15, 25-15, 25-16)

VOLLEYBALL HASN’T LOST A SET SINCE THEY WERE IN SOUTH BEND LAST WEEK. I REPEAT, VOLLEYBALL HASN’T LOST A SET SINCE SUNDAY. This is a positive development. Georgia Tech was a better team than Clemson and VPISU last year. It was about time that they took these matchups with force this year. And, now, they’re back to .500 in ACC with a couple solid wins under their belt, and this is the kicker, on the road. Tech attacked with impunity in the first two sets, bordering on an excellent .500 attack percentage in both. Coach Collier seems to have settled in comfortably with her starting seven, who once again put up very good numbers up front. The story was magnified even more in Blacksburg. These two teams weren’t incredible last year, and they aren’t this year, but these were the dominating performances we’ve been waiting for from the Jackets.

This week: Tech returns home to O’Keefe to face the Tobacco Road private schools.

Men’s Tennis

Out at the ITA All-American to begin the week, freshman Andres Martin played brilliantly, winning several matches and making it into the main draw. Marcus McDaniel won a pair in the pre-draw but fell before he made it out, Pablo Schelcher split his pair of matches, and Brandon Freestone fell early as well, but it was a better showing than recent years, so it is by all means a win. However, Martin is by all means worthy of congratulations for his well-earned place in the top 32 singles players in America.

Tech was able to break into team match play, complete with doubles, this weekend in their home tournament, as well. For the third weekend in a row, the Racket Jackets were in action, and Keshav Chopra has been the talk of the tournament thus far. With one more day yet to play, the freshman finds himself in the Old Gold draw championship today. Tech was able to notch five wins on the first day, before some faltering on Sunday. But, they have six matches to play today, spread throughout singles and doubles, main draws, and consolations, so it should be an interesting day full of competition still on the Flats.

This week: Tech Men’s Tennis is at rest following the conclusion of their tournament on Monday. And, after three weeks, I’d say they deserve it.

Women’s Tennis

No. 10 Kenya Jones played the farthest into the ITA All-American Championship Tournament of any Tech player, but she fell to no. 23 McCartney Kessler of Florida in two sets on Friday to end her bid for the consolation draw crown.

This week: Tech heads to the ITA Southeast Regionals in Tallahassee, Florida.

Women’s Swimming and Diving

It was a brisk 57˚ Fahrenheit for the outdoor Rice Invitational this weekend in Houston. The Jackets ultimately finished in second place, behind their hosts, but ahead of Houston, Incarnate Word, and the Air Force Academy. None of these teams are particularly stiff competition, but Rice is a good meter stick for the program to measure against, especially in week one. Swimming outside is a nice treat in and of itself, no less. As for individuals, Emily Ilgenfritz, now a senior, took wins in the 1000, 500 and 200 freestyle, and Kristen Hepler and McKenzie Campbell joined her with first place finishes of their own in the 200 IM and butterfly, respectively. Meanwhile, diving put three in the top five to round out the weekend. However, the ACC gauntlet begins soon with a much superior Florida State team coming to Atlanta in two weeks. This will begin the real test.

This week: Tech heads home to get some rest, and, hopefully, warm up a little bit.

Softball

In the best fall competition we as fans have ever been lucky to see on the Flats, the Jackets hosted Auburn on Thursday night under the lights at Mewborn Field. I’m not sure if the 2018 lifting of the baseball fall ball ban had a similar effect on softball (I couldn’t find anything online, so correct me if I’m wrong) but between Chipola - defending junior college champions - Emory, Jacksonville State, and Auburn, it’s been a great schedule. Tech took a 3-0 lead into the top of the seventh, and that’s when I left. In the first six innings, we saw tremendous pitching prowess - great progress from last year - and some home run power, as well. Tech let in two in the top of the seventh, but held on to what would have been the end of the game to take a win...but since it’s fall ball, there were some bonus innings, and Tech took the loss 6-5. But, great softball. And, especially for a Thursday night in the fall, an awesome turnout. And, at the end of it all, they tweeted this awesome looking graphic. So it’s a good day to be a Tech softball fan.

This week: Tech gets two games in, one at home against Georgia Highlands on Saturday and one across town at Emory in a fun little DIII-DI matchup on Sunday.


In the Club House:

Take it away, @GT_Hockey!

They’re doing great, congrats to them on a great fall break homestand.

The Hot Corner:

Okay, let’s talk some baseball. With the White and Gold World Series From the Rumble Seat was able to catch some innings over at the always-beautiful Russ Chandler Stadium. Initially a little miffed that there were no active lineups on the board - just someone’s screen shared to the jumbotron - it was soon obvious that what we were being gifted was much better - so much beautiful data. Pitch velocity, revolutions per minute, and exit position. Strike zone pitch tracking. Bat speed velocity. It was incredible. This one’s old, but here’s a nice example of the changes we’re seeing, especially from the pitching side:

I cannot for the life of me find this quote I saw this week, but it was something along the lines of Tech will have the best analytical staff in Division I, come [Hootie and the Blowfish] or high water. Me like. The combination of the enthusiasm of James Ramsey, the recruiting prowess of Danny Hall, and the oomph of Danny Borrell makes me think that adding some fun numbers will make this team absolutely unstoppable. Plus, in my short encounter with them (asking about the numbers on the board), they were super amicable. Oh, and huge Braves fans, based on the screaming when they took the lead in Game 4 of the NLDS.

I cannot wait to see how they do in South Carolina this weekend, and, even more so, get a chance to see them play a live opponent at home on the 26th. Should be a great Saturday on the Flats.


For football coverage:

click here

For basketball coverage:

click here for my featured preview of the week: Andrew’s great bit on UVA and ND


This Week on the Flats:

BOLD for home, REGULAR for away, ITALIC for time and location

Monday:
Men’s Tennis hosts the Georgia Tech Invitational
All day, Ken Byers Tennis Complex

Tuesday: OFF

Wednesday: OFF

Thursday:
Women’s Tennis at ITA Southeast Regionals
All day, Tallahassee, FL

Friday:
Women’s Tennis at ITA Southeast Regionals
All day, Tallahassee, FL

Men’s Golf hosts the Golf Club of Georgia Collegiate Invitational
9:00 AM, Alpharetta, GA (live results here)

Cross Country at the Penn State National Open
11:00 AM, University Park, PA

Volleyball vs. Wake Forest
7:00 PM, O’Keefe Gymnasium, ACC Network Extra and maybe WREK 91.1

Saturday:
Women’s Tennis at ITA Southeast Regionals
All day, Tallahassee, FL

Men’s Golf hosts the Golf Club of Georgia Collegiate Invitational
9:00 AM, Alpharetta, GA (live results here)

Football at Miami
12:00 PM, Miami Gardens, FL, ACC Network Extra and Regional Sports Networks (Fox Sports South in Atlanta) and the IMG Georgia Tech Radio Network (680 AM / 93.7 FM)

Softball vs. Georgia Highlands
1:00 PM, Mewborn Field

Sunday:
Women’s Tennis at ITA Southeast Regionals
All day, Tallahassee, FL

Men’s Golf hosts the Golf Club of Georgia Collegiate Invitational
9:00 AM, Alpharetta, GA (live results here)

Baseball at South Carolina (exhibition)
1:30 PM, Columbia, SC

Basketball vs. Georgia College and State University (exhibition)
2:00 PM, McCamish Pavilion, ACC Network Extra

Softball at Emory (exhibition)
2:00 PM, DeKalb-but-said-in-a-weird-way-turned-Atlanta, GA

Volleyball vs. Duke
2:30 PM, O’Keefe Gymnasium, ACC Network Extra and maybe WREK 91.1