ATLANTA — Five runs in the first three innings and five in the seventh propelled Georgia Tech to a 13-2 victory over Florida Florida A&M in the first round of the Atlanta Regional.
With the victory, the Yellow Jackets will face the Auburn Tigers Saturday at 7 p.m. in the winner’s bracket of the Atlanta Regional. Auburn defeated Coastal Carolina 16-7 earlier in the day.
“First of all, I would like to compliment Florida A&M for certainly being here …
this ballgame look like we had a chance early on to blow them out, but give [Kyle] Coleman credit, he hung in there and did a really good job of competing and getting out of some tough situations. I was proud of Amos [Willingham] just to give up two runs. He was in some tough spots, but made his pitches when we needed him to keep that lead,” Georgia Tech Head Coach Danny Hall said. “I felt like [Jonathan] Hughes came in and settled the game, and after his inning, we were able to put a crocked number on the board and distance ourselves a little bit. So happy to win and move on to get a chance to play Auburn in the winner’s bracket game tomorrow.”
In the first inning with Luke Waddell and Michael Ludberg reaching base on walks, a single by Kyle McCann to center field allowed Waddell and Ludberg to score the first two runs of the night.
During the next inning, the Yellow Jackets added two more runs as Waddell singled to the left and a throwing error by FAMU’s second baseman allowed Jackson Webb to score. Moments later, Nick Wilhite scored after a sacrifice fly by Tristin English thus giving the Yellow Jackets a 4-0 lead.
Georgia Tech’s batting stayed hot in the next inning when Collin Hall scored off a sacrifice fly by Nick Wilhite.
It wasn’t until the fifth inning when the Rattlers managed to put a couple of plays of their own together and were able to take the zero off the scoreboard.
With the bases loaded, Wilis McDaniel scored for FAMU after a sacrifice fly by Brett Maxwell. One batter later, a bunt by Ryan Coscacella resulted in the second run of the game for the Rattlers as Seyjuan Lawrence scored, which cut Tech’s lead 5-2.
In the bottom of the sixth inning, the Yellow Jackets had the opportunity to increase its lead but FAMU’s pitcher Morgan Mendez struck out Collin Hall, thus ending a jam that had him working with bases loaded situation.
But in the seventh inning, Webb, Nick Wilhite and Charlie Benson were walked to load the bases, and after a hit by Guldberg, Benson was tagged out at second, but in a failed attempt at a double play, Webb and Nick Wilhite scored for Tech, thus giving the team a 7-2 lead.
One batter later, a hit to center field by English allowed Guldberg to score from second base.
Just before the end of the inning, the Yellow Jackets loaded the bases again, and this time, it was Hall who drove in two runs for Georgia Tech as McCann and English scored to make it a 10-2 ballgame.
The Yellow Jackets would add three more runs in the bottom of the eighth inning as English batted a line drive towards third base and Guldberg, Benson and Nick Wilhite scored to make it a 13-2 final.
“I thought they played really well today. I thought they swung the bat well, and probably some guys they’d been counting on all year to have a big year for them, [Steven] Williams being one of them, probably didn’t have the year he would have liked to have had or they would have liked him to have had, but he had a great day today,” Hall said about tomorrow’s matchup against Auburn. “He’s definitely capable. I’ve seen him play for a long time. The way they played today, they are capable of putting runs up on the board. The ball does carry a little differently at night time as opposed to daytime here. They got a good guy going on the mound, and we got a good guy going on the mound, so it should be a heck of a ballgame.”