Slayden, Yellow Jackets
manhandle Blue Devils
Tech pounds out 23 runs and 25 hits in
By Sean Ryan
SALEM, Va. – Nine, three, one, zero, zero, five, five, zero – 23,
That linescore pretty much summed up the story
as Georgia Tech coasted to a 23-4 win over Duke Saturday in an elimination game
at the ACC Tournament at Memorial Stadium. Jeremy Slayden went 6 for 6 – tying
the Yellow Jackets’ school record for hits in a game and setting the league
tournament mark – with four runs and four RBI for Tech. The Yellow Jackets
(41-16) advanced to meet North Carolina, and the Blue Devils end their season at
“It’s the kind of day you like to
have,” Tech skipper Danny Hall said.
Tech started the cakewalk in the
first inning, roughing up Duke starter Kevin Thompson in a nine-run frame.
Steven Blackwood hit a two-run homer the second batter of the game, and Slayden
stroked a three-run bomb for a 5-0 lead. Eric Patterson, Blackwood and Clifton
Remole added RBI singles in the first, giving starter Aaron Walker a 9-0 lead
with which to work.
“After six hitters, we were in
trouble,” Blue Devils coach Bill Hillier said. “I feel bad for Kevin Thompson.
He’s had a very tough career; he’s so much better than that.”
Thompson was charged with five runs (four earned) and three hits
in one-third of an inning. Zach Schreiber followed with two-thirds of an inning
with six hits, seven runs (three earned) as Tech never let off the gas.
The Yellow Jackets had three
homers (Slayden, Blackwood and Tyler Greene) among their nine extra-base hits.
Slayden and Clifton Remole (4 for 5, two runs, four RBI) each had two doubles.
“I came to the park ready to
play,” said Slayden, adding that he began focusing on having a good day after
Friday night’s loss to North Carolina State. “I was seeing the ball real well.”
Tech’s Walker tossed a career-best nine innings and struck out a
career-high six batters. He allowed 11 hits and saved the Yellow Jackets from
having to burn any more arms.
“I didn’t want to waste the bullpen,” said Walker, who improved
Every Tech starter had at least one hit,
contributing to a total of 25 for the day. Andy Hawranick had three hits, and
Eric Patterson, Blackwood, Micah Owings and Jake Hall each added two hits.
Adam Murray went 2 for 4 with an RBI for the Blue Devils, who
eliminated Clemson to get to this point in the tournament.