Slow Start Haunts Jackets in Sunday Loss to No. 5 Clemson

THE FLATS – Georgia Tech got off to a slow start to open up the ACC contest on Sunday afternoon, as No. 5 Clemson scored 13 runs over the first three innings of play to put the Jackets in a big hole early in the 13-6 loss in the third game of the weekend series at Russ Chandler Stadium.

The loss drops Tech to 15-11 overall and 4-8 in ACC play. The win pushes Clemson to 24-5 overall and 10-2 in league play.

Tech had a trio of players record two hits apiece in the contest in Wade Bailey (2-for-3, 2 2Bs, BB, 3 RBIs, run), Trevor Craport (2-for-4, 2B, BB, 2 runs) and Ryan Peurifoy (2-for-4, BB, run). Coleman Poje was 1-for-4 with a double, while Kel Johnson (1-for-3, BB, RBI) and Joey Bart (0-for-3, RBI) each had an RBI.

The Jackets used nine pitchers on the afternoon, as starter Ben Schniederjans (1-2) was handed the loss with six runs on four hits and three walks over an inning plus.

Clemson was led by Reed Rohlman (3-for-5, 2 HRs, 2B, BB, 7 RBIs, 3 runs), Chris Williams (2-for-5, HR, 3 RBIs, 2 runs) and Logan Davidson (2-for-4, HR, 2B, BB, 2 RBIs, run), while starter Pat Krall (5-0) earned the win allowing just two runs on six hits, three walks and six strikeouts in 5.2 innings of work.

The Tigers took advantage of two walks and a wild pitch before an RBI single from Williams, an RBI double by Davidson and a sacrifice fly by Andrew Cox put the visitors in purple in front early at 3-0 in the top half of inning number one.

After Tech got a run back in the bottom half of the inning on a Craport double, a Bailey sacrifice bunt and a Bart RBI groundout to put the score at 3-1, the Tigers exploded in the top of the second with a seven-run inning.

The second inning proved to be the difference maker in the game, as Clemson pushed across seven runs on six hits and one Tech error. Back-to-back hits and a walk loaded the bases for Rohlman who hit a grand slam to right field to give the Tigers a 7-1 lead.

Two batters later, Williams hit a two-run home run to left to add to the Clemson lead at 9-1. Davidson followed with a solo shot to right center to put the Tigers in front at 10-1 midway through the second.

Clemson added three runs in the third on a second home run by Rohlman, this time a three-run shot, to give the home team a 13-1 lead.

That’s when Tech’s pitchers settled down, keeping Clemson off the scoreboard and holding the Tigers to just one hit in each of the next five innings of play until freshman Garrett Gooden pitched a 1-2-3 inning in the ninth.

However, the early damage proved to be too big of a deficit for the Jackets, as the White and Gold scored one run in the fifth on an RBI single by Johnson and four in the eighth on an RBI single by Nick Wilhite and a bases clearing double by Bailey with the bases loaded to put the score at 13-6.

The Jackets (15-11, 4-8 ACC) will hit the road to take on the Auburn Tigers on Tuesday, April 4, at 7 p.m. ET Auburn, Alabama.

Tech Tidbits

* Nick Wilhite registered his first career RBI as a Jacket with an RBI single in the eighth.
* Trevor Craport has now hit safely in seven straight games with a double in his first at bat.
* Austin Wilhite pushed his hitting streak to six straight games with a single in the fourth.
* Wade Bailey extended his hitting streak to four consecutive games with a double in the fifth inning.
* Kel Johnson extended his current hitting streak to six straight games with an RBI single in the fifth inning.

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