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Georgia Tech Baseball: Yellow Jackets Break 4-Game Skid, Win 2 of 3 Over Clemson

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It was a much-needed series win at a crucial time in the season for Georgia Tech's baseball team.

Danny Karnik/Georgia Tech Athletics

Game 1 -- Friday, April 24, 7pm

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Clemson Tigers
0 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 2 8 1
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
0 0 0 0 1 0 0 3 X 4 13 3

W: Zac Ryan (6-1) | L: Taylor Vetzel (1-3) | S: None

Coming off of a sweep the previous weekend at the hands of Boston College that saw Georgia Tech score only a single run the entire trip, and a midweek blowout home loss to Kennesaw State, the Yellow Jackets started out slowly again on Friday night. Clemson took a 1-0 lead in the second and extended it to 2-0 in the fifth inning before the Yellow Jackets cut into that lead off of a Matt Gonzalez RBI single. The deficit would remain into the eighth inning, where Georgia Tech got a two-run single from Thomas Smith and a two-out RBI single from Daniel Peurifoy. The Jackets got 2 hits each from Smith, Wade Bailey, and AJ Murray, and combined to strike out 10 times as a team.

The win came in part due to a strong outing from Georgia Tech starter Jonathan King, who went 6.2 innings only giving up 2 runs (1 earned) on 4 hits and 3 walks, striking out 2. Zac Ryan pitched the final two innings and earned the win, facing 5 batters and not allowing any hits or walks, striking out 2.

The win improved Georgia Tech to 25-16 and 10-12 in conference play.

Game 2 -- Saturday, April 25, 6pm

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Clemson Tigers
0 0 3 0 1 0 1 3 3 11 13 1
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
1 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 3 8 0

W: Zach Erwin (3-2) | L: Cole Pitts (0-5) | S: None

Unfortunately, any momentum Georgia Tech gained on Friday night did not carry into Saturday -- or at least not very far into it. The Jackets scored one in the first on an AJ Murray RBI double before giving up 3 runs in each of the third, eighth, and ninth innings, including a single run in the fifth and seventh innings. It was a shelling by the Tigers, who got 2 home runs from Eli White and another from Tyler Krieger. The Tigers scored 11 runs despite leaving as many on base. The Jackets added a run in the sixth off of an AJ Murray solo home run and got another off of a Blake Jackson sacrifice fly in the seventh, but ultimately came up far short after a strong offensive showing from Clemson.

Cole Pitts took the loss after giving up 4 runs (all earned), 4 hits, and 4 walks in only 4.1 innings on 79 pitches. Matthew Gorst and Joe Wiseman gave up 3 more runs each, and Ben Parr gave up one as well in 2.1 innings of relief. Altogether, Georgia Tech's pitchers gave up 13 hits and 10 walks, and recorded only 5 walks.

With the loss, Georgia Tech fell to 25-17, and 10-13 in conference play.

Game 3 -- Sunday, April 26, 1pm

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 R H E
Clemson Tigers
0 1 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 1 4 10 1
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
2 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 2 5 9 0

W: Zac Ryan (7-1) | L: Clate Schmidt (1-2) | S: None

It was an extra-inning affair featuring some late-game heroics that made for an exciting series conclusion on Sunday at Russ Chandler Stadium. The Jackets scored 2 in the first inning off of a home run by Matt Gonzalez, and only scored once more in the following 8 frames on an RBI single from Thomas Smith in the fifth inning. The Tigers matched those three runs with one in the second and two in the fifth, and also failed to add on any runs in the final four frames. After Clemson took a 4-3 lead in the top of the tenth, Georgia Tech tied the game on a Connor Justus hit that scored AJ Murray, and won the game three pitches later on a Daniel Peurifoy single that scored Thomas Smith.

Sophomore Brandon Gold had a career performance, pitching a full 9 innings and allowing only 3 runs (all earned) on 8 hits and 1 walk, striking out 7 on only 105 pitches. He was relieved by Zac Ryan in the tenth, who allowed a couple of hits and a run (earned) but still earned the win.

It was Georgia Tech's 14th come-from-behind victory of the year and improved them to 3-1 in extra inning games. They improve to 26-17 overall, and 11-13 in league play.

Standings

The Yellow Jackets currently sit in third place in the Coastal Division, 5 games behind Miami (31-13, 16-8), 2.5 games behind North Carolina (29-15, 13-10), and a full game over Virginia (27-17, 10-14).

Up Next

This week is Finals week, leaving the Jackets off until next weekend. Then, they'll play host to Presbyterian for a Saturday double-header and a series conclusion on Sunday. They'll close out regular season conference play by hosting Pittsburgh the following weekend and then traveling to Miami the weekend after that.