ATLANTA, Ga. (May 17, 2011) - Derek Niesman's (Wellington, Fla.) two-run single in the top of the ninth lifted the ETSU baseball team to an 8-6 win over 8th ranked Georgia Tech Tuesday night at Russ Chandler Stadium in Atlanta, Ga.
The win is one of the biggest for the Bucs (35-17, 15-10 A-Sun) against a top 10 ranked team in the program's history, and is also the first win for ETSU in 24 attempts against the Rambling Wreck (37-16, 20-7 ACC).
In the top of the ninth with the game tied at 6-all, the Bucs loaded the bases on a Michael Gonzalez (Jupiter, Fla.) two-out walk. In the next at-bat, Niesman drilled a 3-2 fastball through the left side of the infield to score catcher Derek Trent (Kingsport, Tenn.) and Kerry Doane (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) to give ETSU an 8-6 lead.
Bo Reeder (Cookeville, Tenn.) then came in to close out the game in the ninth inning for his 17th save to break the Atlantic Sun single season saves record. Reeder faced the minimum as Doane and Corey McPherson (Johnson City, Tenn.) turned an unbelievable double play to thwart a Yellow Jacket rally. Reeder then struck out Tech's Matt Skole to end the contest.
Buccaneer reliever Dak Rissman (West Palm Beach, Fla.) was exceptional on the mound throwing 2.0 scoreless innings in the seventh and eighth to improve to 5-1 on the year. Rissman retired all six batters he faced while striking out three.
Niesman, Reeder and Paul Hoilman (Johnson City, Tenn.) each had two hits in the game for ETSU, while Andrew Green (Powell, Tenn.) improved his hit streak to 14 games with his single in the first inning.
The Bucs threatened early as after loading the bases in the top of the first with one out, but Georgia Tech starter Matt Grimes would strikeout Dylan Pratt (Johnson City, Tenn.) and then induce a groundout to end the inning unscathed.
In the bottom half of the frame, the Yellow Jackets went in front 1-0 on a RBI double by Mott Hyde.
Kyle Wren added to the Georgia Tech lead in the bottom of the second as he singled in Sam Dove from second to make the score 2-0.
Tech made it 4-0 in the bottom of the third on a two-run homer to right by Daniel Palka.
Trent brought the Bucs within a run in the top of the sixth as he crushed a three-run homer to right. The home run was the 14th of the year for Trent.
In the top of the seventh, ETSU went in front 6-4 after plating three runs in the inning. Both Niesman and Green reached to start the inning. In the next at-bat Reeder singled in Niesman to tie the contest at 4-all. Later in the inning, Green came in to score on a sac fly to left by Pratt to give the Buccaneers a 5-4 advantage. Doane capped off the scoring for ETSU in the inning with a RBI single.
Skole pulled Tech even when his two-run home run tied the game at six in the bottom of the seventh, but Rissman and Reeder limited the Yellow Jackets to only one hit in the final three innings of play, lifting the Bucs to the two-run victory over the eighth-ranked team in the country.
The Bucs close out the regular season this weekend in Macon, Ga. against Mercer. For more information on Buccaneer baseball, visit ETSUBucs.com or follow the Bucs on Twitter at http://twitter.com/ETSUAthletics.