A look around The Flats

While football is the main story on the Flats this time of year, Georgia Tech athletics is in full swing with action all over campus.

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Volleyball- Senior middle blocker Quinn Evans led Georgia Tech past No. 18 Florida State on Friday with a career-high 13 kills on 27 swings and just one error for a .444 hitting percentage. It marked the first Georgia Tech win against a ranked-opponent since a 3-2 victory on Nov. 8, 2012 at home against No. 22 North Carolina. It’s the highest-ranked team the Jackets defeated since beating No. 17 Florida State, 3-2, on its home court on Oct. 2, 2009.

The Yellow Jackets were back in action Wednesday with a road loss to Clemson in straight sets. It was the second loss in a row for Tech including Saturday’s defeat to Miami at home. The 7-10 Jackets host ACC newcomer Notre Dame at O’Keefe on Saturday at 7 p.m, marking Notre Dame’s first visit to Atlanta since 1995.  

 

 

Golf-  The Jackets, ranked 4th in Golfweek, and second in both Golf World and Golf Stat, are off this week after finishing second to host Mercer in last weekend’s Brickyard Collegiate. A win would have been the Jackets second Brickyard title in the last three years. The No. 2-ranked Yellow Jackets shot their best score of the fall season and their best in seven Brickyard events with a total of 839, good for 25 under par, but were outperformed by the host Bears, who shot 7-under 281 Sunday and won by two. The Bears surged into the lead Saturday with a 16-under-par round and matched the Jackets shot-for-shot on Sunday at the Brickyard at Riverside Course.

Tech, which won the Carpet Capital Collegiate and the Tar Heel Intercollegiate in September, looks forward to hosting the United States Collegiate Championship next weekend at The Golf Club of Georgia in Alpharetta. Tech has won the event in memorable fashion last fall by rallying from seven shots behind on the back nine to take down UCLA. Seth Reeves has taken at least a share of medal honors in two events this fall for Tech, while Ollie Schniederjans was co-medalist at the Carpet Capital Collegiate and finished as the runner-up in Tech’s last two events.

 

Basketball– Tech basketball held an open scrimmage Saturday at McCamish Pavilion that showed off Tech’s mix of veteran presence and newcomer talent on the floor. Here’s a tweet from @GTMBK highlighting that day’s stats, “Some numbers from today’s @GTMBK scrimmage. Team shot 51.9% collectively, hit 8-of-26 3s, 17-of-29 FT (58.6%), 25 ast (on 55 FG) vs. 22 TO.”

Tech fans had their first look at Tennessee transfer Trae Golden along with freshmen Travis Jorgenson and Quinton Stephens as well as a healthier Corey Heyward.

Head Coach Brian Gregory said of the scrimmage, “I thought we did a lot of good things. For the younger guys to get out there and play in front of a little bit of a crowd after only six practices, was good. I thought we moved the ball well and we played at a pretty good pace. We made the extra pass, and we’ve got some obvious areas to improve in but overall I thought it was a great experience for our young team.”

Since the NCAA pushed up the start date for teams to begin season preparations, the Jackets loaded up on practices this week to enjoy a full week off the court on fall break.

 

Women’s Basketball– Also underway in preseason prep is Tech’s women’s team, led by senior Tyaunna Marshall, who has been named to the 2013-14 Preseason “Wade Watch” list. The Wade Trophy is presented annually to the NCAA Division I Player of the Year in women’s basketball. Marshall is one of the select 25 student-athletes from 18 schools on the list, including six from the ACC. The rising senior was a 2013 AP and WBCA Honorable Mention All-American and was named to the All-ACC First Team and All-Defensive Team. Marshall was the only player in the ACC to rank in the conference’s top 10 in scoring (18.1 ppg), rebounding (8.4 rpg) and steals in 2012-13. Marshall enters her senior season with 1,520 career points, good for eighth on Georgia Tech’s all-time list.

 

 

 

Women’s Tennis- This past week, sophomore Megan Kurey and Kendal Woodard finished second in the back draw doubles bracket at the Riviera/ITA Women’s All-American Championships. After being eliminated from the doubles main draw in the first round, Kurey and Woodard went on to defeat three-straight ranked opponents to make it to the finals in the back draw bracket. The duo defeated two pairs ranked in the top five, including # 2 Fuller and Garcia of Georgia. Kurey and Woodard were defeated by Michigan’s #3 Brooke Bolender and Emina Bektas, 8-5, in the finals. This weekend, the women’s tennis team will travel to Music City to participate in the Vanderbilt Invitational from Friday through Sunday.

 

 

Men’s Tennis- Georgia Tech hosts the USTA/ITA Southeast Regional tomorrow through Tuesday at the Ken Byers Tennis Complex on campus. Just one of sixteen regionals in the country, Tech’s will showcase the top players from seventeen schools in Georgia and Florida for a 64-player singles draw and a 32-team doubles draw. Play begins with qualifying singles Friday at 8:30 A.M., and the main draws begin Saturday at the same time. The champions of each flight will advance to the USTA/ITA National Collegiate Indoor Championships in November at the National Tennis Center in Flushing, N.Y.

 

Softball- The Georgia Tech softball team opened its first weekend of fall ball with a pair of victories Saturday against North Georgia winning 6-4 and Kennesaw State 4-2.

 

Defending ACC Player of the Year Ashley Thomas hit two home runs on the day and both were first-pitch swings with two outs. Sophomore Maddie Lionberger went  2-for-3 in against North Georgia with back-to-back doubles and followed with an RBI double against Kennesaw State that scored the go ahead run.

 

Freshman Kanani Cabrales picked up the win in game one, pitching 4.2 innings, and sophomore Ashley Clifton pitched 2.0 innings in relief. Junior Kylie Kleinschmidt entered from the bullpen to strikeout the final batter with the bases loaded to give Tech the win. Kleinschmidt then pitched a complete-game against the Owls, allowing two runs on four hits and striking out six.

 

Baseball- The Tech Nine is in the midst of an annual ritual to close fall practice, the White and Gold Series. Captains Dusty Isaacs and Mott Hyde each selected their teams to battle in a seven game set. On Tuesday, four pitchers for #TeamIsaacs combined for a no-hitter in handing #TeamHyde a 9-0 defeat in Game 3. The best-of-seven series favors #TeamHyde, 2-1.

After #TeamHyde won the first two games of the series by a combined score of 15-3, freshman righty Matt Phillips got the start for #TeamIsaacs and fired four innings of hitless ball, allowing two walks with one strikeout to recover from his Game 1 loss.

With a one run lead in the fifth, #TeamIsaacs captain Dusty Isaacs pitched three perfect innings of relief with five strikeouts to keep his team in front.

 Isaacs has seen growth in his team this fall, “It’s been great. We’ve got a lot of spots open for grabs and we have a lot of young guys who can really play. I think between that and the older guys have really stepped up and done a good job of leading. I think we’re really starting to gel as a team and I’m looking forward to finishing it out strong.”

Head coach Danny Hall  announced this week the addition of former Yellow Jacket All-American Tony Plagman as the volunteer assistant coach, replacing another former Jacket in Wally Crancer who left for an assistant’s job at Purdue. Plagman played the last three years in the Detroit Tigers organization.

 

Cross Country- The Georgia Tech men’s and women’s cross country teams had a strong showing Saturday at the 12th annual Greater Louisville Classic. The men placed fourth and the women finished 11th. Jeremy Greenwald led the Georgia Tech men and Katie Townsend finished first for the Tech women. The Jackets are back in action a week from today when the team divides to compete at the Berry Invitational in Rome, Georgia and the Pre-National Invitational in Terra Haute, Indiana.

 

Swimming and Diving-  The men’s and women’s swimming and diving team opened its season with a win over Limestone Saturday at the Georgia Tech Aquatic Center. The men’s team won 160-94, while the women’s team recorded a 164-87 victory.

 Andrew Kosic won all four events he entered in to lead the Yellow Jackets. The Jackets won in both the 400 medley relay and 200 free relay, and swept both the 50 free and 100 free thanks to Kosic’s efforts. Last Saturday marked the third time in the last two seasons that Kosic has won the 50 free and 100 free in the same meet.

 

This weekend’s action on The Flats:

 

Friday, October 11

Men’s Tennis – USTA/ITA Southeast Regional, 8:30 a.m.

Women’s Tennis at Vanderbilt Invitational

 

Saturday, October 12

Men’s Tennis – USTA/ITA Southeast Regional, 8:30 a.m.

Volleyball vs. Notre Dame, 7 p.m. on ESPN3

Football at BYU 7 p.m. on ESPNU

Women’s Tennis at Vanderbilt Invitational

 

Sunday, October 13

Men’s Tennis – USTA/ITA Southeast Regional, 8:30 a.m.

Softball vs. Georgia Gwinnett College (DH), 1 p.m.

Women’s Tennis at Vanderbilt Invitational

 

About Nolan Alexander

I'm pursuing my dream of becoming a play-by-play broadcaster while seeking a degree in Business Administration from Georgia Tech. I serve as the "Voice of Yellow Jacket Baseball" on WREK Atlanta 91.1 FM. This fall marks the beginning of my fourth year on the Flats. Follow me on Twitter: @Nolan__Ryan