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April 8, 2012
ATLANTA-- No. 2 Florida State put the finishing touches on a three-game sweep of No. 24 Georgia Tech Sunday afternoon at Russ Chandler Stadium.
FSU cruised to an 8-4 victory, the 1,700th of head coach Mike Martin's career. The man affectionately referred to as "11" is just the third Division I head coach to reach the milestone and fourth coach in all collegiate divisions.
After the game Martin played off the significance of the win, saying what his team accomplished over the weekend was more important in his eyes.
"It was just a weekend in which we played extremely well," Martin said. "You never expect to go on the road and win three ball games in the Atlantic Coast Conference. I'm just very, very proud of the way our guys kept their poise."
Sophomore Peter Miller (4-1) turned in the best performance of his career on the mound to earn the victory. Miller gave up just two earned runs on four hits and one walk in a career-high six innings of work.
Miller retired the first 10 batters he faced before a walk in the top of the fourth. After a Sam Dove single, Jake Davies put Georgia Tech on the board with an RBI single to make it a 6-1 FSU lead.
"I had really good fastball command early on," Miller said. "It kind of went away from me as I had to sit in the dugout a little bit when we had those big innings. The curveball was there, 11 said it was probably one my best outings and I think so."
Catcher Stephen McGee agreed that it was the fastball command for Miller that made him so effective on Sunday as he struck out four. His one walk tied his career-low on March 25 against Wake Forest, but Miller lasted just 2.2 innings in that outing as he took his lone loss of the season.
"He didn't miss spots. His fastball was really working for him and he was keeping the (Georgia Tech) off balance," McGee said of Miller. "Once he has that fastball working for him all the rest of the pitches will fall in and he can be a really dominant pitcher."
In the top of the third FSU jumped out to a 2-0 lead behind a run-scoring double for Devon Travis that brought home John Nogowski as Brandon Thomas bobbled the ball for an error. Travis came around to score on an RBI single from Jayce Boyd.
In the top of the fourth FSU pulled away from the Yellow Jackets as they put up four runs in the frame. Josh Delph got the scoring starting as he came around to score on a Travis single after reaching base on a double to right field.
Sherman Johnson, who walked prior to Travis' single, came around to score on an E-4 off the bat of James Ramsey. Ramsey stole second, which led to an intentional walk of Boyd, followed by a two-run double by McGee down the third base line to extend the lead to 6-0.
"That's what the players were talking about before the ball game," Martin said of the early lead. "When you have a team that is so-called down, you want to be able to ignite something, you want to get yourself going. Our guys did a great job of getting it done and getting the lead."
In the sixth FSU put the game further onto cruise control with an RBI single by Ramsey and an RBI ground-rule double from McGee for an 8-1 advantage. McGee finished the game 4 for 4 with three RBI, a pair of doubles and a walk.
"I felt really good," he said of his at-bats. "I was seeing the pitches really well and getting good swings on the ball. I've been hitting the ball well but just hitting it right at people getting kind of unlucky."
The win improved FSU to 27-5 overall and 14-1 in the Atlantic Coast Conference and dropped Georgia Tech to 19-14, and 6-9.
Miller said going into the game he wanted to put a wrap on the series sweep and earn the milestone victory for his head coach.
"I can't stress how important it was to get the win for 11, but just to sweep Georgia Tech was huge for us," he said. "I knew our hitters were going to come out and I knew I needed to give them some support and keep the runs down. Georgia Tech swings the bat well so I knew I needed to keep the ball low and keep the ball in the yard."
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