Yellow Jackets Down Diamond Dawgs

ATHENS - Georgia Tech stole a little of the sweetness from Georgia's best start in a decade.

The No. 24 Bulldogs were one pitch away from beating their arch-rival on Wednesday night in front of 3,606 fans at Foley Field, but Georgia Tech second baseman Eric Patterson singled up the middle to score two runs and give the Jackets a 4-3 victory.

The Bulldogs, who came into the game with their best record since 1992, fell to 16-5. They return to action Friday night against Vanderbilt in Nashville, Tenn. Georgia Tech improves to 13-11 and hosts Georgia Southern twice this weekend.

Georgia pitcher Johnny Dobbs took the loss after walking the bases loaded in the ninth inning to set up Patterson's game-winning hit. Dobbs entered the game not having surrendered a walk all season.

"Three in a row," Georgia coach David Perno said, shaking his head. "It was just unusual. We were not prepared for that."

Perno wasn't happy about it either. He had an ongoing discussion with home plate umpire Ken Couch throughout the ninth inning, including in the bottom of the inning, when Tech pitcher Micah Owings struck out the side to get the win.

"No comment," Perno said after the game. "I can't comment on the officiating."

Georgia looked like it had the game won thanks to a three-run Josh Morris home run in the bottom of the sixth inning. Tech starter Lee Hyde pitched a perfect game through 3 innings and had a no-hitter for 4, but the Bulldogs finally got to him in the sixth.

Justin Holmes doubled and Jason Jacobs singled to set up Morris' 11th home run of the season.

"I thought they would bring the right-hander (Owings) in, but I was glad they didn't," Morris said.

Tech coach Danny Hall wanted to bring in Owings, but when he called the bullpen Owings said he wasn't warmed up enough to enter the game, Hall said.

"I was kicking myself in the rear end that he wasn't ready," Hall said.

The Yellow Jackets gave Georgia plenty of chances by stranding seven runners and hitting into four double plays.

"They're a very good team," Morris said. "You have to score more runs against them."

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