April 17, 2010
Atlanta, GA –
Jacob Esch and Jeff Rowland both hit two-out, run-scoring singles in the seventh inning to propel #5 Georgia Tech to a 4-3 win over #16 Clemson in front of 2,491 fans at Russ Chandler Stadium on Saturday afternoon. The Yellow Jackets, who took a 2-0 series lead, improved to 30-5 overall and 14-3 in the ACC. Clemson dropped to 23-13 overall and 10-7 in ACC play.
Kyle Parker gave Clemson a 1-0 lead in the first inning on a run-scoring double, then a pair of solo homers in the fourth and fifth innings gave Georgia Tech a 2-1 lead. After the Tigers tied the score in the sixth inning on Parker’s solo homer, Clemson took a 3-2 lead in the seventh thanks to a Yellow Jacket error. But two clutch hits by Esch and Rowland sent the Yellow Jackets to a one-run win.
Yellow Jacket starter Brandon Cumpton (6-0) earned the win, as he allowed eight hits, three runs (two earned), and two walks with six strikeouts in 7.0 innings pitched. Andrew Robinson pitched a scoreless ninth inning to record his third save of the year. Cumpton, Robinson, and Buck Farmer combined to limit Clemson to just 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position. The Tigers also left eight runners on base, including seven in scoring position, while Georgia Tech left just five on base (three in scoring position).
Tiger starter Scott Weismann (3-2) pitched 7.0 solid innings against one of the nation’s best offensive teams, but he suffered the loss. He yielded nine hits, four runs, and one walk with a career-high-tying seven strikeouts.
In the first inning, Mike Freeman hit a one-out double down the left-field line. Two batters later, Parker grounded a two-out double down the right-field line to score Freeman.
After three hitless and scoreless innings for the Yellow Jackets, Derek Dietrich belted an opposite-field, solo home run to left-center in the fourth inning. It was his 12th long ball of the season.
With two outs in the fifth inning, Thomas Nichols lined a solo home run to right field, his fourth home run of the season, to give Georgia Tech a 2-1 lead.
Clemson came right back and tied the score in the sixth inning when Kyle Parker lined an opposite-field, solo home run just inside the right-field foul pole, his 13th homer of the year.
In the top of the seventh inning, Freeman hit a two-out single to center and Jeff Schaus followed with a single up the middle. Freeman hustled into third base, then Schaus took second on the throw to third. Third-baseman Matt Skole’s throw to second was errant, allowing Freeman to score.
The Yellow Jackets regained the lead in the bottom of the seventh inning. Chase Burnette hit a one-out double to left-center. Two batters later, Esch grounded a two-out single up the middle to score Burnette. After Brandon Thomas fisted a single to left-center, Rowland lined a single to right-center to plate Esch.
The Tigers put their first leadoff batter on base in the game when John Nester led off the ninth with a single through the right side. Pinch-runner Addison Johnson advanced to second on Will Lamb’s sacrifice bunt, then Chris Epps struck out swinging on a 3-2 pitch for out #2. Freeman’s flyout to left field ended the contest.
Rowland and Tony Plagman had two hits apiece for Georgia Tech, who had nine hits in the game. Parker went 2-for-4 with a homer, double, and two RBIs for the Tigers, who also accumulated nine hits in the contest.
Clemson’s four-game losing streak is its longest since April of 2008. The Tigers also fell to 0-9 in their last nine games decided by two runs or less.
Clemson and Georgia Tech will play the series-finale on Sunday at 1:00 PM.
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