Bulldogs Aim To Continue Winning Streak Versus Tech
March 3, 2014
ATHENS-----Up next, Georgia plays host to rival Ga. Tech Tuesday in the first of three meetings with the Yellow Jackets this season. The Bulldogs are 5-6 while Tech is 7-4. The game will be televised by CSS starting at 7:05 p.m. Freshman RHP Robert Tyler (1-0, 1.74) will start against Tech senior RHP Alex Cruz (0-0, 0.00).
Tyler will be making his fourth appearance of his career including his second start. Last week, he picked up his first career win, pitching five innings in relief against Furman, allowing one run on two hits with six strikeouts. His only other career start came against Kennesaw State (Feb. 18) and got a no decision (4.1 IP, 7H, 4R, 1ER, 0BB, 3K). Tech swept Bowling Green this past weekend in Atlanta. Like Georgia, they have losses to Ga. Southern and Kennesaw State this season.
Georgia won the series last year over Tech 2-1. After dropping a 7-5 decision to Tech in Athens, Georgia posted a historic rout of the Yellow Jackets 17-0 at Turner Field and then erased a 7-1 deficit in Atlanta to win 14-13 in 11 innings. Georgia will play at Tech on April 15 and then the game at Turner Field will be on May 13. In records dating back to 1950, Georgia leads the all-time series 114-98.
One storyline of note for this year’s Tech series is Bulldog coach Scott Stricklin played for Danny Hall as a catcher at Kent State from 1991-93. Hall would land the Tech job in 1994. After finishing his professional baseball career, Stricklin’s first coaching job came at Tech under Hall as a volunteer coach from 1998-99 and then as a hitting coach/recruiting coordinator from 2002-04. The 2004 season saw Georgia sweep Georgia Tech in Atlanta during a Super Regional to advance to the College World Series. In 2005, Stricklin was named head coach at Kent State where he remained until becoming Georgia’s coach this past June. Coach Stricklin went 2-3 against Tech while at Kent State.
Georgia is fielding .983 with 16 double plays turned this season. The Bulldogs are batting .263 with a 5.27 ERA. Last week, Georgia made strides on the mound, posting a 2.68 ERA, going 4-1 with only 14 walks and 37 strikeouts. The first six games of the season, Georgia went 1-5 with a 7.62 ERA and had 32 walks and 36 strikeouts.
Juniors Hunter Cole (.381-1-7) and Nelson Ward (.250-1-8) are the only two Bulldogs to reach base safely in all 11 games this season. Both have made starts at two different positions this year. Cole has started eight games in left field and three at third base while Ward has started nine games at shortstop and two at second base. Ward will be at shortstop this week after freshman Mike Bell (.400-0-1) tweaked a hamstring in the Binghamton series.
Freshman Stephen Wrenn (.293-0-2) batted .375 last week. He is 5-for-5 in stolen bases. He has had perfect fielding in 32 chances. He notched his first career assist in the Binghamton series when he threw out a runner at home. Last Wednesday, he made arguably the best catch in CF in the last few years, the highlight is on YouTube. He made his debut in CF in the season opener and batted leadoff against Ga. Southern. He had 3 SB in the 11-3 win. Before Wrenn, the last time Georgia had a freshman CF start a season opener was 2009 (Zach Cone) and to bat leadoff in a season opener was outfielder Johnathan Taylor (2009 in LF). Cone and Taylor would alternate in LF/CF that year. Before Wrenn, the last Bulldog to have 3 SB in a game was Taylor vs. Quinnipiac in 2009.
On Wednesday, Georgia faces Charleston Southern (9-2) at 6 p.m., and then the Bulldogs play host to the Georgia Invitational Friday-Sunday which features Buffalo (6-1), Western Carolina (7-2) and North Florida (4-6). The tournament will feature two games a day and one ticket is good for both games daily.
Georgia Bulldog Invitational at Foley Field
Fri.: North Florida vs. Western Carolina, 1 pm; Buffalo vs. Georgia, 5 pm
Sat.: UNF vs. Georgia, 1 pm; WCU vs. BU, 5 pm
Sun.: BU vs. UNF, 11 am; WCU vs. Georgia, 3 pm
Radio: Georgia Bulldog Sports Network from IMG College
Play-by-Play: David Johnston, Jeff Dantzler
Stations: 960 AM-WRFC and selected affiliates (check your local listings), georgiadogs.com/allaccess via GTV
TV: Tuesday (CSS, Matt Stewart, PxP, Rusty Ensor, Color)
Ticket Information: Single game Reserved seats at Foley Field: $8 each; General Admission: $5 apiece and can be purchased online. Georgia ticket office (877-542-1231) between 8:30 am-4:30 pm Monday-Friday. UGA students admitted free with their valid UGA Student ID card. UGA Student Gate is located off Rutherford Street.
Promotions: Multiple during the game.
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