Dawgs get revenge over Tech

ATLANTA - Georgia freshman Josh Morris smashed a solo home run to lead off the eighth inning as the Bulldogs defeated Georgia Tech 6-5 Wednesday.

Morris hit an opposite field blast on a 3-2 offering from Brian Burks for his Southeastern Conference leading 13th home run as Georgia snapped a three-game losing streak. Sophomore Will Startup pitched the final two innings for his sixth save as the Bulldogs (21-13) overcame a season-high 10 walks and four wild pitches plus the Yellow Jackets (20-15) stranded 13.

Ga. Tech struck first in the first without the benefit of a hit. Second baseman Eric Patterson drew a leadoff walk and a pair of stolen bases put him at third. Then, a wild pitch by Dobbs, allowed Patterson to score for a 1-0 lead. Georgia answered in the top of the second thanks in part to a pair of errors by third baseman Wes Hodges.

With two outs, Bulldog designated hitter Derek Smith lined a single to right. Third baseman Josh Smith bounced one to Hodges that he couldn't handle. Catcher Clint Sammons gave Georgia a 2-1 advantage when he drilled a 1-0 offering down the right field line for a two-run double. Centerfielder Kyle Keen grounded one to third that Hodges misplayed and the ball bounced in to shallow left field, allowing Sammons to score to make it 3-1. The Yellow Jackets made it a one-run game in the third courtesy of a bases-loaded walk to Steven Blackwood. However, Georgia regained its two-run lead in the fourth.

Joey Side notched a one-out single and scored on a double down the left field line by Smith. The Bulldogs manufactured a run in the fifth. Keen was hit by a pitch, took second on a sacrifice bunt by Bobby Felmy and then stole third. Justin Holmes lifted a fly ball to shallow left that Patterson caught but Keen was able to tag and score for a 5-2 Bulldog advantage.

The Yellow Jackets tied the game in their half of the frame as the Bulldogs issued five walks and two wild pitches to aid their comeback. A wild pitch by Josh McLaughlin made it 5-3 and then a bloop two-run single by Whit Robbins off Bo Lanier tied the game at 5-all. With the bases loaded, Lanier got Hodges, the ninth batter of the inning, to pop out to shortstop to keep it a tie game.

Both teams' starters were gone by the fourth as Georgia Tech brought in Aaron Walker for Blake while McLaughlin came on for Johnny Dobbs. Woods surrendered four runs (one earned) on four hits with a walk and one strikeout in 3.2 innings. Dobbs allowed two runs on four hits with four walks and four strikeouts. Walker pitched until the seventh when the Yellow Jackets brought in senior right-hander Brian Burks for his first relief appearance of the year after nine starts. Startup saved the win for Lanier who improved to 2-1. Lanier pitched 2.1 scoreless innings with one walk and three strikeouts. Startup pitched two scoreless innings with a walk and two strikeouts. Burks took the losss to fall to 2-4.

For Morris, it was his second career home run against the Yellow Jackets. He hit a three-run shot in the March 24th game in Athens that gave the Bulldogs a 3-2 lead. Howeve, the Yellow Jackets rallied back that night for a 4-3 win in the ninth. For the first time since 1984, the teams have played two one-run contests in the series. The final game between the two rivals will be May 11 at Turner Field, home of the Atlanta Braves.

Up next, Georgia continues the four-game roadtrip by heading to Baton Rouge, La., for a Southeastern Conference series with seventh-ranked LSU. The Bulldogs face the Tigers starting Friday at 7:30 p.m. ET. CSS will air the live telecast of Friday's game via Cox Sports-TV.

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