After a rough patch earlier in March that saw Georgia Tech swept by Florida State and blown out by Auburn, the Jackets were back in form going into this past weekend after a sweep of Virginia Tech and a midweek win over Kennesaw State. They made a trip to Chapel Hill, where they were due to take on the consensus top-5 North Carolina Tar Heels, who had only lost twice all year and had won 16 of their last 17.
That high ranking and hot streak didn't deter the Jackets, who managed to double the Heels' loss total by the end of the weekend with a 2-1 series victory.
Thursday, March 24
|#21 Georgia Tech (17-4, 4-3)||0||0||0||0||3||0||0||0||0||3||10||0|
|#3 North Carolina (17-3, 5-2)||0||0||1||0||0||0||1||0||0||2||6||1|
Friday, March 25
|#21 Georgia Tech (17-5, 4-4)||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||5||1|
|#3 North Carolina (18-3, 6-2)||3||0||1||0||1||0||3||0||X||8||10||0|
Saturday, March 26
|#21 Georgia Tech (18-5, 5-4)||1||0||0||0||2||0||3||0||0||6||11||0|
|#3 North Carolina (18-4, 6-3)||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||4||3|
A pair of strong pitching performances from Brandon Gold and Zac Ryan were enough to take games on Friday and Sunday, giving the Jackets a big win over a top-ranked conference opponent. The two seniors combined for 13.1 innings of only allowing 2 runs, 8 hits, 3 walks, and 8 strikeouts. Ryan's 6.0 shutout innings on Sunday were a career-best. For Georgia Tech, the series win was the program's first series win on the road against a top-5 opponent since 2009.
The Jackets followed up with a strong midweek performance on Wednesday against Georgia Southern, who they defeated in Statesboro earlier in the year on some ninth-inning heroics from Matt Gonzalez and finally a 16th-inning home run by Gold, winning the marathon contest 6-5 in 16 innings. They went for the season sweep at home on Wednesday, and ended up completing it easily.
Wednesday, March 30
|Georgia Southern (15-9)||0||0||0||1||0||0||0||0||0||1||4||3|
|#18 Georgia Tech (19-5, 5-4)||1||1||3||0||0||0||1||0||X||6||13||0|
A strong Cole Pitts pitching performance coupled with some early offense drove Georgia Tech to its 12th win in its last 14 games against in-state rivals, and its 32nd win in its last 38 out-of-conference games.
Georgia Tech welcomes conference foe Duke to town, when they'll look to continue their recent hot streak. The Blue Devils, on the other hand, come to town sporting a (12-13, 2-7) record, having lost 9 of their last 13 games. Duke has struggled offensively in conference play, only managing more than 3 runs once in nine games so far. Another strong series could vault Georgia Tech into the top 20 of all major polls, where they're ranked in the top 25 in each, and as high as 16 by D1A sports.
Games will be played at 7pm Friday, 4pm Saturday, and 1pm Sunday at Russ Chandler Stadium.