4 things to know in Georgia Tech athletics

Vincent Whaley practices wedge shots while head coach Bruce Heppler looks on - Noonan Golf Facility, May 2, 2017

Credit: Ken Sugiura

Credit: Ken Sugiura

Vincent Whaley practices wedge shots while head coach Bruce Heppler looks on - Noonan Golf Facility, May 2, 2017

Brutal conclusion to golf season

Georgia Tech’s golf team missed out on a trip to the NCAA Championships in a most agonizing finish.

Needing to finish fifth or better at its NCAA Regional in Stanford, Calif., the Yellow Jackets finished one stroke back of fifth place Wednesday after the completion of the 54-hole tournament. Its three-day total at 4-over par 844, while North Carolina was 3-over par 843. In other words, the Tar Heels were .1 percent better than the Jackets. Even more agonizingly, Tech’s five players had three bogeys against one birdie on the final two holes. North Carolina, meanwhile, played its final three holes in 4-under par.

Tech will miss the NCAA Championship tournament for just the fourth time in the 29 years that the regional qualifying format has been used.

“This was a disappointing way to finish, for sure,” coach Bruce Heppler said in a statement. “We had a couple of three-putts at the last hole that would have made a difference. If we par one, we’re in a playoff; if we par both, we’re going to Chicago (for the championship). But it’s always more than just one shot or two. You can look back over all three rounds and pick out things we could have done batter. We just needed to play better overall.”

Tech's top individual finisher was Luke Schniederjans, who tied for 12th at even. His three rounds included an 8-under par 62, which is the lowest score ever (by stroke total) recorded by a Tech player in an NCAA regional round. It was also the lowest round ever shot by a player in an NCAA regional at Stanford Golf Course.

Women's tennis in Sweet 16

After winning first- and second-round matches against Alabama State and Northwestern last week, the Tech women's tennis team will play a round of 16 match against Oklahoma State in Athens on Friday at 7 p.m. Tech is ranked eighth nationally. The winner moves on to the quarterfinals against the winner of the matchup between No. 1 Florida and No. 16 Texas A&M.

Baseball team trying to stay in ACC Tournament field

The Tech baseball team goes into the final series of ACC play tied for 10th, on the bubble to stay in the field for the ACC Tournament. The top 12 teams make the tournament.

With tiebreakers over two of the teams in the bottom five, the Yellow Jackets are in good shape. Tech’s series with Virginia begins Thursday at Russ Chandler Stadium at 6 p.m., followed by games Friday (6 p.m.) and Saturday (12:30 p.m.). It appears that one win against Virginia and one Boston College loss would ensure the Jackets’ in the ACC Tournament, which begins next Tuesday in Louisville, Ky.


Credit: Ken Sugiura

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Credit: Ken Sugiura

Scenarios for Georgia Tech to make the tournament:

Boston College and Virginia Tech losing their series and Pitt not sweeping.

Georgia Tech wins one game and Boston College and Virginia Tech not sweeping.

Honor for Bart

Catcher Joey Bart has been named one of 15 semifinalists for the Johnny Bench Award, given to the nation’s top catcher in Division I. Bart is hitting .296 with 13 home runs, 13 doubles, 43 RBI and 36 runs scored. He is a sophomore.

Tech has never had a player who has won the award, first awarded in 2000. Tech great Matt Wieters was one of three finalists for the award in 2007.