Five-run third, six-run fourth helps Georgia Tech cruise past Miami in Sunday’s rubber match

Head coach J.D. Arteaga takes a mound visit for a pitching change at Alex Rodriguez Park at Mark Light Field on Wednesday, Apr. 17, 2024. Photo credit: Jason Hill

Similar to Saturday’s game, the Georgia Tech bats immediately jumped out on the Hurricanes and never looked back, and this time they made certain there was no chance at a comeback. 16 hits compared to only one for Miami was the story of the day as the ’Canes fell to the Yellow Jackets, 17-1.

Looking to follow up on a strong start last weekend against Louisville, Herick Hernandez did not get his desired result on Sunday. Hernandez only managed to make it through 2.1 innings, giving up seven hits and six runs.

The first and second innings were not bad for Miami, as Georgia Tech managed to scrape across a run in each frame but did not have much of a rally going in either inning. However, the third inning is where the wheels started to come off for Hernandez.

Three home runs in the inning’s first five batters were enough to chase Hernandez out of the game and open the flood gates that never seemed to close.

Jordan Vargas came on in relief of Hernandez and was able to calm down the Yellow Jackets in the third, allowing just one more run to come across home plate, making it a 7-1 ballgame. But when Ben Chestnutt replaced Vargas in the next inning, the runs kept piling up.

Chestnutt began the bottom half of the fourth with two walks, a recipe for disaster. Jackets third baseman John Giesler promptly hit his second homer of the day, extending the lead to nine, knocking Chestnutt out of the game.

Chris Scinta relieved Chestnutt and quickly started giving up more hits himself. Georgia Tech drove in two more runs by the end of the inning, giving it a 13-1 lead through just four innings.

After the fourth, UM head coach J.D. Arteaga put in a flurry of substitutions, even though the Hurricanes had come down from a deficit of nine runs earlier in the season against Virginia in a historic comeback win.

Adding insult to injury, the Yellow Jackets added four more runs in the fifth inning and eventually went on to mercy rule the Hurricanes by a final score of 17-1.

Although blame can easily be pointed at the pitching staff after a performance like this one, the hitting was also abysmal.

UM hitters logged only one hit and struck out 11 times against a Tech pitching staff that ranks 123rd in the country in earned run average, giving up 5.72 runs per game.

The lone hit came from JD Urso, who capped off a nice weekend at the plate, launching his second homer in as many days, even though he came into the weekend without a home run in a Hurricanes uniform.

The ’Canes will get a break this week with no mid-week game, giving them the opportunity to prepare for an out-of-conference series at home against BYU next weekend.

BYU will serve as a get-right opportunity for Miami and a chance to build some momentum before the final two series of conference play. The Cougars (16-24, 6-18 Big 12) are at the bottom of the Big 12 standings, making it a must-win series for UM.

The three-game set will begin on Thursday at Mark Light Field, with the first pitch scheduled for 7 p.m.