ATLANTA, GEORGIA — There was a moment earlier on Sunday where I thought the unthinkable was happening, that Tech was following up a gutty football road win on Saturday with a volleyball takedown of #2 Louisville in their own building. Alas, it was not meant to be in the L&N Credit Union Arena, which is about as close to a house of despair as one can find in the conference outside of Tech’s own bandbox arena. More on that shortly.
Tech sweeps Notre Dame (25-12, 25-23, 25-19)
Tech gets reverse swept by Louisville (22-25, 25-14, 25-21, 25-20)
Georgia Tech’s trip to Louisville was, as many have been for essentially the entirety of Louisville’s membership in the ACC, quite a daunting showing. After dispatching Notre Dame with relative ease despite a furious Fighting Irish comeback in the second set, the Jackets took their talents down Interstate 65, pivoting to a Sunday matinee on the Worldwide Leader after the South Bend Friday nightcap. L&N Federal Credit Union Arena is somewhat of an interesting relic of a bygone era, as membership in the union that owns the naming rights to the facility is limited to family of former Louisville & Nashville Railroad employees - a company that has not existed in quite some time - that first merged into the Seaboard Air Line and through subsequent corporate machinations is a part of today’s CSX. It is doubly interesting, though, since the 1,000 seat gymnasium is built into the university’s student union, a building that is itself bifurcated by two tracks of an L&N subdivision that bypasses downtown on its way northeast to Cincinnati and splits off the mainline that itself forms the western campus border. Why is all of this relevant to volleyball? Well, it isn’t, but was part of the Wikipedia rabbit hole I fell down last spring when I headed up there to cover softball and never got to work it into a story.
Jack did a tremendous job recapping this weekend’s seven sets, and, rather than duplicating his effort, I encourage you to check out his summary and three thoughts at the link below. Meanwhile, we will pivot our attention to cross country, tennis, and swimming.
Robert Bauer, Angel Guerrero Melgar, Keshav Chopra, and Rohan Sachdev headed up to Lawrenceville this weekend to play in the second of the UTR College Circuit events that Tech will be participating in this season. The doubles pairings of Bauer/Guerrero Melgar and Chopra/Sachdev each played well, with the former duo falling 6-1 in the semifinals and the latter advancing to the doubles draw championship and putting up a 6-2 fight before they, too, were dispatched. There were 57 men entered in the tournament, which was both good for the prize pool and meant that the tournament’s #1 overall seed, Chopra, received a bye through the first round. Sachdev, Guerrero Melgar, and Bauer started play in the Round of 64, and all three Tech entries played through to the Round of 16, where Guerrero Melgar fell 6-3, 6-2, and Bauer was dispatched 6-3, 7-6. Meanwhile, Sachdev fell in the quarterfinals, 6-3, 6-3, and Chopra played through the tiebreak only to fall via an upset in the semifinals, 6-4, 6-3.
Tech is in action at the ITA All-Americans in Tulsa throughout the rest of the week.
Cross Country split their squad this weekend, with some Tech runners heading up to Lehigh, and others competing in Fairburn. Up in Pennsylvania, Tech faired decently, with the men finishing 17th out of 131 schools, a truly massive meet including a range of schools the likes of North Carolina and Villanova to that of Lancaster Bible College and SUNY Maritime. James Cragin was Tech’s top finisher, placing 55th with a time of 23:42.6 in the 8K, good for 40.2 seconds behind the leader. Zach Jaeger, Josh Williams, Devin Wade, and John Higinbotham consisted of the rest of the main Tech pack, finishing between 111th and 130th and about 20 seconds behind Tech’s leader. Tech’s other scoring entries, Jackson Borden and Ronan Sullivan, placed 170th and 171st at around 24:27, out of a grand total of 1,159 entries in the race.
On the women’s side, 1,131 runners squared off in the 6K, and Tech finished 14th out of 134 schools. Interestingly, Tech was just outpaced by the University of Guelph, a school in Canada. Go figure. Among Tech’s finishers, Helena Lindsay finished at the top of the pile with her 20:04.3 earning her 23rd place overall. Liz Galarza finished 4 second later for another top 30 result. Kate Jortberg was Tech’s other finisher in the top 100, while Mary Brady (165), Mary Kathryn Knott (206), Reagan Mahoney (212), and Katy Earwood (226) rounded out Tech’s scorers. Overall, it was an interesting meet simply for the sheer scale, and for the interesting juxtaposition of the women and their extremely high individual finishers, while the men saw success from the better overall finish of the majority of their pack.
As for the group in Fairburn, the men and women placed first overall, but the thing that jumped out at me first was the fourth place individual on the men’s side. Interestingly, Hayden Marshall, a Georgia Tech student, was not running to his exemplary 25:11.04 8K finish as a varsity athlete, but as one representing the Runnin’ Wreck, Tech’s running club. He finished 4th overall among male competitors, and behind Alex Thomas among Tech athletes. Also of note, the results did not include GT Runnin’ Wreck as a team among the team scores, but a re-score of the men’s side of the meet with them included yields the following top five:
- Georgia Tech
- West Alabama
- Runnin’ Wreck
Of course, a large contingent of Tech talent was up north for the Lehigh meet, but it is still interesting to see a club team beating Division 1 Wofford, though, for all I know, that squad could very well have been split, too. Overall, Tech won the meet by quite a bit, and no competitor was all that close to Emory, either. Among the women, the meet was closer, and also did not feature any Tech club athletes in the results, from what I can tell. The Jackets were led by Riley Perlakowski, and all of their scoring entries finished in the top 7. They edged out a much closer Wofford team, while Emory and Oxford finished behind the aforementioned schools, as well as Carson-Newman to round out the top five. On the weekend, the following men and women, varsity and club, finished in the top 50: Thomas, Marshall, Charlie Smith, Miguel Schlicht, Tristan Autry, Zack Truitt, Cole Miller, Ethan Curnow, Jean-Lou Pare, Dalton Yu, Will Goldsmith, William Lusty, Perlakowski, Clay McKnight, Abigail Green, Allie Walker, Ashley Sechrest, Sophie Boice, Erin Fegans, Katherine Byrne, Sarah Burwell, and Bella Turner.
All in all, this may very well be the most I have ever written about cross country. It certainly was an interesting pair of meets for the Jackets, when everything is said and done.
Tech’s next meet will take place at Penn State in two weeks.
Swimming and Diving
Emory is the theme of the weekend for the Tech non-revenue sports, as Tech opened up their season with a familiar, on-again, off-again schedule fixture in the form of an erstwhile crosstown rival-slash-joint stakeholder in the Institute’s degree offerings. The Eagles were also opening their season on the weekend as the men begin their quest to defend last year’s Division III championship, their second in school history and 18th top three finish nationally, while the women look to follow up their runner-up campaign with a return to the top of the pile, a feat they have accomplished 12 times. I think sometimes the school on Clifton flies under a radar a bit, given their relative dominance of a bevy of Division III sports.
Anyways, the Tech teams, with the men fresh off of a top 25 Division I showing themselves, had no trouble dispatching their guests. Tech swept the podium on 11 occasions, accomplishing the feat in the 1000 Free [M/W], 500 Free [M/W], 200 Breast [M/W], 200 Free [W], 400 IM [W], 200 Fly [W], 100 Free [W], and 200 Back [M]. The final combined scores from McAuley resulted in 339 points for the hosts and 141 for the guests.
Tech is in action on the road next week at UNC-Wilmington, where the women will additionally face Campbell.
From the Club House
[see Cross Country results above]
- Clemson Invitational Results (Clemson, SC)
- Georgia Tech (1554.16)
- The School in Athens (893.66)
- Virginia (712.5)
- UNC-Chapel Hill (627.5)
- Miami (Ohio) (619.16)
- Clemson (526.5)
- VPISU (315.5)
- UNC-Charlotte (259.5)
- Two Game Series versus Alabama (Split Locations)
2-1 [L - OT]
10/3- Ben Hogan Collegiate Invitational (Fort Worth, TX) [ALL DAY]
10/3-9 — ITA All-American Championships (Tulsa, OK) [ALL DAY]
10/5-9 — ITA All-American Championships (Cary, NC) [ALL DAY]
10/7 — South Carolina (Fall Exhibition, 10 Innings) [6:30 PM]
Swimming and Diving:
10/8 — at UNC Wilmington (M & W), vs Campbell (W) [11:00 AM]
10/7 — Virginia [7:00 PM, ACCNX]
10/9 — Pittsburgh [2:00 PM, ESPN - McCamish Pavilion]
10/8 — Duke [4:00 PM, ACCNX / RSNs]