COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Maryland rode a complete-game performance from senior right-hander Jake Stinnett and scored six runs in the final two innings in a come-from-behind 7-2 victory over No. 25 Georgia Tech Friday night at Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium.
Stinnett finished off his ACC-leading third complete game of the season with his 10th strikeout of the night getting Tech second baseman Mott Hyde swinging. After giving up two runs in the first two innings, Stinnett settled down and only allowed two Yellow Jacket hits in the last seven innings to earn his fourth win of the year.
"He's obviously getting better as the year goes on,” said head coach John Szefc. “[Georgia Tech head coach] Danny Hall after the game said that Jake's a big leaguer. That's coming from a coach that has probably coached [close to] 2,000 games. He's seen big leaguers.
"I have a lot of respect for Jake. I wanted to let him finish it. He earned every bit of that."
With only two hits through the first six innings, the Terps (23-13, 8-10 ACC) tied the game and took a 4-2 lead with a three-run seventh. In the eighth with two runners on, Jose Cuas turned on a 3-2 pitch and blasted it over the wall in left field for his team-leading fifth home run of the season, and his second in as many games, to give the Terps a five-run cushion.
Blake Schmit, who finished 2-for-2 with three runs scored, sparked the three-run seventh opening the frame with a single up the middle. Standing at second after a sacrifice bunt, Schmit got a great jump off Georgia Tech (24-15, 10-9 ACC) starter Josh Heddinger and when Tim Lewis flared a single to right raced home to tie the ballgame at two.
Maryland then utilized a little bit of small ball to grab the lead. Kyle Convissar and pinch hitter Mike Rescigno each reached on a hit-by-pitch to load the bases for Charlie White. White and Lewis executed a safety squeeze, which was mishandled by Yellow Jacket reliever Sam Clay allowing Lewis to score easily and White to reach safely.
The Terps tacked on another run with a sacrifice fly from Brandon Lowe to score Convissar giving Maryland a 4-2 lead.
"What bunting does puts a lot of pressure on the defense and the pitchers,” said Szefc. “Charlie put down the best possible bunt on a high pitch. He's also our best bunter, so if we are going to bunt, he's going to do it."
Cuas helped put the game out of reach in the eighth. Kevin Martir and Schmit each walked to start the inning and a balk put both in scoring position. After falling behind 3-0, Tech’s Zac Ryan battled back to bring the count full. Cuas turned on the next pitch and planted it over the wall in left for a three-run homer.
Stinnett took care of the rest for the Terps striking out two in the eighth and two in the ninth to increase his ACC-best strikeout total to 84. After allowing three hits and two runs through two innings, Stinnett then retired 12 straight Georgia Tech batters and did not surrender a hit until the eighth.
Maryland got its first run of the game in the second on a RBI single from Tim Lewis. Lewis finished the game 2-for-3 with two RBI and a run scored.
The Terps will look to clinch the series against the Yellow Jackets Saturday. First pitch is set for 2 p.m. from Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium.