April 2, 2010
Hokies topple fourth-ranked Florida State 10-5
Tech wins in Tallahassee for first time since 1989
Virginia Tech (19-9) 05032000010151
(4) Florida State (20-5) 0003000025101
  • Dick Howser Stadium - 4,362

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. Reigning ACC Pitcher of the Week Justin Wright tied a career-high with 10 strikeouts and the Virginia Tech offense hit a season-high seven doubles to help the Hokies win at fourth-ranked Florida State for the first time since 1989 with a 10-5 victory on Friday night at Dick Howser Stadium.

The win, which improved Virginia Tech to 19-9 overall and 5-5 in the Atlantic Coast Conference, was the just the second victory for Tech over the Seminoles in the past 27 meetings. The Hokies last defeated FSU in 2006 when the Seminoles were ranked No. 1 in the nation. Before that, the last victory came in Tallahassee on April 21, 1989. It was the Hokies’ fourth win over a top-five team since head coach Pete Hughes took over the program in 2007.

Wright picked up where he left off last weekend when he threw a complete-game shutout against Wake Forest. He went seven innings in this one, allowing three runs (two earned) on seven hits and two walks to improve his season record to 4-3. Relievers Brandon Fisher and Ben Rowen combined for the final two innings to finish off the Seminoles, who fell to 20-5 overall and 6-4 in league play with the loss.

The Hokie offense was equally as impressive, establishing a season-high for hits in an ACC game with 15, including seven doubles. That is the most doubles in a single game for Tech since hitting eight against JMU on March 27, 2007. According to FSU Sports Information, it was the most doubles ever given up by the Seminoles’ pitching staff in a single game in school history. Right fielder Austin Wates led the way by going 4-for-5 with two of those doubles and three runs batted in.

The Hokies jumped out to a 5-0 lead thanks to six hits, including three doubles, in the top of the second inning. Shortstop Tim Smalling, playing for the first time since injuring his shoulder on March 17, led off with a single and moved to second on a base hit by first baseman Ronnie Shaban. Two batters later, left fielder Buddy Sosnoskie sent a first-pitch double to right field to score them both. Two batters after that, catcher Steve Domecus doubled home Sosnoskie. Ryan followed by doubling in Domecus and Wates capped the outburst by singling home Ryan. The three doubles in the inning tied for the most given up by Florida State this season, a figure that second baseman Michael Seaborn increased with a double of his own in the third inning.

Tech continued its doubles party in the fourth inning, when Wates brought home another pair of runs in the form of Ryan and third baseman Tony Balisteri with a two-bagger to right-center field. Wates later scored on an error by Florida State shortstop Stephen Cardullo to make it 8-0 Hokies.

Florida State got on the board in the bottom of the fourth with three runs, cutting Tech’s advantage to five. After third baseman Sherman Johnson was hit by a pitch with two outs, he moved to third on a single by second baseman Devon Travis and scored on a base hit by first baseman Jayce Boyd. Ryan muffed the pickup in center field on the play, allowing Travis to also score and Boyd to advance to third. Catcher Rafael Lopez finished things off with a third consecutive base hit to bring home Boyd.

Tech immediately got two of those runs right back in the fifth, with the first courtesy of a two-out, solo home run to center field by Balisteri, his second long ball of the season. Domecus followed with Tech’s sixth double of the game to tie a team season-high and a personal career-high, before scoring on a base hit to right field by Ryan.

Wates’ double in the eighth inning was the Hokies’ 18th two-bagger in the past three games, as they collected five against VMI on Tuesday and six against East Tennessee State on Wednesday.

A two-run homer by FSU’s Tyler Holt in the ninth inning set the final score at 10-5.

The Hokies and Seminoles are scheduled to continue the three-game series on Saturday beginning at 6 p.m.

For updates on Virginia Tech baseball, follow the Hokies on Twitter (@VT_Baseball).

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