No. 16 Hokies Softball Hosts Yellow Jackets

The red-hot Hokies host Georgia Tech this weekend in Blacksburg. (Virginia Tech athletics)

Softballs could be flying this weekend at Tech Softball Park as the red hot No. 16 Hokies (32-9-1, 14-4 ACC) host Georgia Tech (29-17, 11-7). Virginia Tech leads the ACC in home runs with 94 while the Yellow Jackets are second with 78, good for second and fourth in the country, respectively.

Virginia Tech is on a six-game winning streak, five of which have come by the run-rule variety, and has scored 66 runs that span. Georgia Tech is also playing well, having won five of its last six games.

All three games will be available on ACC Network Extra. Here is the schedule:

Georgia Tech, which was picked eighth in the ACC preseason poll, finds itself tied for fourth place in the conference at 11-7 with Clemson and Virginia. However, with a current RPI in the 50s, it desperately needs some more quality wins to be considered for the NCAA Tournament. Its current resume shows one top-25 win (Auburn, RPI No. 15) and two more top-50 wins (Louisville, RPI No. 46), but it also has two bad losses (Syracuse, RPI No. 92).

The Yellow Jackets’ strength has been their offense. They have eight players hitting .318 or better and are hitting .321 as a team. They’re currently fourth in the country in home runs per game (1.70) and eighth in slugging percentage (.575). They also make opposing pitchers throw strikes as they rank seventh in the NCAA in walks (178).

However, Georgia Tech has struggled in the circle this season. It ranks 11th in the ACC in ERA (4.33 ERA), 12th in home runs allowed (50) and dead last in walks issued (186).

Fifth-year right-handed pitcher Blake Neleman (6-8), who has started a team-high 14 games, has a career ERA of 5.00. Junior right-hander Sophia Voyles (8-2), who has made 13 starts this season, has a 3.47 ERA. In the team’s most recent series against Louisville, she threw a five-inning shutout on Friday and then appeared in relief in the following two games.

Junior Kinsey Norton (8-4, 3.05 ERA) and fifth-year senior Chandler Dennis (6-3, 4.84 ERA) started the other two games vs. Louisville. Norton leads the team in saves with four while Dennis has three.

This series will feature a return to Blacksburg of the Hokies’ all-time RBI leader, Kelsey Bennett, who is now an assistant coach for the Yellow Jackets. Bennett, who started 244 games for the Hokies during her career, is second on Virginia Tech’s all-time list in home runs (47) and total bases (411).

Here is the tale of the tape:

3 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. We love receiving this kind of info as Hokie lovers to add context to the game/series.

  2. These Hokie women are making life interesting around Blacksburg. Bless them all! Wish I could be there for the weekend.

  3. Looking forward to this series. A sweep here would be great and could be possible. It will be nice to see Kelsey Bennett again. I hope our pitchers throw strikes and limit the free passes. Solo HRs do not hurt as much. Might be a lot of bombs during these games.

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