Tech tops Dawgs 11-1

ATHENS - Georgia Tech freshman Deck McGuire struck out a career-high nine in seven innings as the 25th-ranked Yellow Jackets defeated eighth-ranked Georgia 11-1 Wednesday in front of a Foley Field crowd of 3,487.

McGuire improved to 8-0 as the Yellow Jackets (34-14) hit three home runs and scored nine two-out runs against the Bulldogs, and the last seven of those runs came after there were two out and nobody on base. Georgia (31-16-1) has approached its midweek games as staff outings and seven Bulldog hurlers saw action on the night.

Freshman Derek Dietrich gave the Yellow Jackets a 1-0 lead with a run-scoring single in the first off Bulldog starter Will Harvil. In the second, Tech designated hitter Luke Murton connected for his 10th home run of the year for a 2-0 lead. With one on and one out in the second, Georgia turned to sophomore left-hander Alex McRee and he struck out the next two Yellow Jackets. Meanwhile, McGuire cruised through the first three frames, holding the Bulldogs without a hit and recording five strikeouts. Harvil dropped to 1-1, allowing two runs on four hits with two strikeouts. McGuire did not walk a batter and surrendered just one run on four hits with nine strikeouts.

With one out in the bottom of the fourth, Georgia senior Matt Olson smacked a double off the wall in left center for the Bulldogs first hit. With two outs, sophomore Rich Poythress responded by smashing an RBI-double off the top of wall in right center to cut the lead in half at 2-1. McRee gave Georgia 1.2 scoreless innings and struck out three and Georgia handed the ball to freshman Justin Grimm to start the fifth. The Yellow Jackets put runners at the corners with one out and Grimm nearly escaped unscathed until senior Brad Feltes delivered a two-out, two-run single on a 2-2 offering to make it 4-1.

With two outs in the sixth, the Yellow Jackets took advantage of a couple of Bulldog miscues to score three more runs on four hits off sophomore Steve Esmonde to extend their lead to 7-1. Senior Nick Montgomery finished the frame and pitched the seventh. With two outs in the seventh, Charlie Blackmon hit his eighth home run, a two-run shot that made it 9-1. With two outs in the eighth, Feltes added a two-run home run, his 13th of the year, for an 11-1 advantage.

"We couldn't finish a lot of the innings, and we didn't adjust offensively," said Georgia coach David Perno. "There was not a lot of focus as a team, and that's the first time all year we have been like that the whole game, and I hope that's a one-time thing, we'll find out Friday. Will Harvil and Alex McRee started out pretty good and gave us a chance but after that, we had trouble getting that third out."

Georgia will be back in action Friday in Nashville, Tenn., against 16th-ranked Vanderbilt. The Bulldogs hold a three-game lead over the Commodores (35-13, 14-9 SEC) in the race for the Southeastern Conference title. First pitch Friday will be at 7:06 p.m. ET, and the game will be televised live by CSS.

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