Georgia Southern continues to lead the Sun Belt in overall wins and is hoping that a strong finish to the regular season - and a deep conference tournament run - will lead to an invitation to the NCAA regionals.
But a date with Georgia Tech proved to be a rather sizeable bump in the road.
The Yellow Jackets erased an early deficit with a four-run second inning and built a lead as large as 10-1 en route to a 12-3 win and a sweep of the season series over Georgia Southern.
Brian Eichhorn got the start for the Eagles (35-18) and tossed a clean first inning before running into a wall. Coleman Poje led off the frame with a single, Austin Wilhite doubled and Brandt Stallings walked to load the bases. Keenan Innis lofted a sacrifice fly and Nick Wilhite cleared the bases with a triple to left. Wade Bailey singled up the middle to plate Nick Wilhite and the Jackets (26-24) had posted a four-run inning in just over five minutes.
Poje doubled to lead off the third and Eichhorn was lifted as Ryan Frederick came in from the bullpen. The senior righthander allowed his inherited runner to score, but was otherwise effective in the third and tossed a clean fourth inning. Frederick retired the first two batters he faced in the fifth, but walked Austin Wilhite and then allowed a two-run home run to Stallings to make it a 7-1 Georgia Tech advantage.
At that point, Hennon appeared to shift gears, spreading out the remaining innings thinly so as not to tax his pitching staff leading into the Eagles’ final Sun Belt series of the regular season.
Following Frederick, Anthony Paesano got the Eagles out of the fifth inning and was one of six Georgia Southern pitchers used to record the final 10 outs.
Hunter Phillips took the mound for GS in the sixth and allowed three runs - all unearned - when Poje added to his big day with a three-run shot to right center. Eric Goldstein closed out the sixth and Zach Strickland was touched up for four hits and a pair of runs while working the seventh.
Lawson Humphries and Colt Ramsey combined to work a scoreless eighth for the Eagles.
Georgia Tech used a similar tactic to conserve its own pitching depth, but was able to make moves without worrying about rallies or a mounting deficit.
Ben Schniederjans started for the Jackets and went three innings, allowing only one run on a safety squeeze by C.J. Brazil in the second. Jared Datoc tossed the next two innings for GT and was ultimately credited with the win.
The Eagles’ only other offense came on an RBI groundout by Jacob Greene in the seventh and a solo home run by Martin to right center in the eighth.
Tuesday’s contest was a one-off midweek game for the Eagles, but they remained in Atlanta overnight - and will kill some more time in the state capital today - as they await a three-game set at Georgia State, scheduled to begin Thursday evening.