CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. - The Boston College baseball team earned its spot in the 2010 ACC Championship as it defeated No. 6 Georgia Tech, 6-3, on Senior Day at Eddie Pellagrini Diamond at Commander Shea Field.
The win gives the Eagles a 14-16 mark in the conference this year, which could end up tied with NC State and North Carolina for the final spots in next week's tournament (pending today's results). However, BC swept the Wolfpack earlier in the year and it holds the tiebreaker over the Tar Heels with today's win against the Yellow Jackets.
Sophomore pitching led the way for the Eagles in the win as Taylor Lasko improved to 4-1. He pitched 5.1 innings and allowed three runs on five hits. Classmate Mike Dennhardt came on in relief with the bases loaded and one out in the sixth, shutting the door in that inning and then going on to pitch 2.2 frames of no-hit ball. Matt Brazis picked up his ninth save of the year with a perfect ninth.
Lasko cruised through the first four innings by only allowing two base runners and Dennhardt faced the minimum number of batters in his appearance. The Jackets did not get an extra base hit in the game.
Senior John Spatola went 2-for-4 at the plate with his 15th homer of the year and three RBI. Sophomore Brad Zapenas hit his first collegiate home run and went 2-for-4 and scored twice while junior Garret Smith had a hit and an RBI.
A pair of senior captains produced the game's first run for the Eagles in their final home game at Shea Field. Robbie Anston led off with a single to center and junior Matt Hamlet moved him up to second with a sac bunt. With two outs, Spatola ripped an RBI single with two strikes to give BC the early lead.
Boston College posted two more runs in the third to take a 3-0 lead. Smith fouled off four pitches before hitting a leadoff single and then Anston reached on an error by the shortstop. Hamlet laid down another sacrifice to move them both into scoring position and junior Mickey Wiswall brought in a run with a grounder to third as Smith beat the throw at home. Spatola then got a ball deep enough to center to drive in BC's third run.
The Eagles tacked on another run in the fourth. Zapenas ripped a single on a 1-2 fastball with one out and then classmate Andrew Lawrence sliced a double down the line in left to put runners on second and third. Smith sacrificed Zapenas in with a fly out to left field.
Georgia Tech loaded the bases with no outs in the fifth thanks to a pair of singles and a hit batsman and got three runs out of it. Jay Dantzler drove in two runs with a single that went under the glove of Anthony Melchionda at third and then a sac bunt moved both runners into scoring position. A groundout brought the other run in to cut the lead to 4-3.
The Jackets threatened again in the sixth but came up empty. Matt Skole walked with one out and then Thomas Nichols singled up the middle to put runners on the corners. A walk loaded the bases, forcing head coach Mik Aoki to go to the pen. Dennhardt came on and induced an inning-ending 6-4-3 double play to get the Eagles out of the jam.
Zapenas picked the perfect time for his first career home run, going the opposite way on a full count to give the Eagles a two-run cushion in the bottom half of the sixth. Spatola added more insurance in the bottom of the eighth when he led off with a solo home run to right to make it 6-3.
Nichols and Chase Burnette both had two hits for Georgia Tech (44-11, 21-9 ACC). Dantzler added the other hit and had two RBI. Jeff Rowland drove in the other run.
Anston, Dane Clemens, Dave Hasebroock, Chris Kowalski, Geoff Oxley, Spatola and Mike Sudol were all honored prior to their final home game with the Eagles.