Georgia Tech left out of field

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ATLANTA - Disappointment and anger are not new emotions for Georgia Tech's baseball team this time of year.

Usually the bitterness stems from losses deep in the NCAA's College World Series tournament. But Monday, the Yellow Jackets felt more outrage than heartbreak.

The disappointment: The NCAA baseball tournament selection committee left the Jackets out of the 64-team field for just the second time in 23 years.

The anger: The committee awarded at-large bids to two schools from small conferences - Memphis and Troy - for playing tough non-league schedules, according to committee chairman Larry Templeton, and gave an invite to defending national champion Oregon State, which finished 10-14 in Pacific-10 Conference play.

"That really sticks in my craw - that's total BS," Georgia Tech coach Danny Hall said.

Troy finished 34-25 this season and played in series against top-10 teams Arkansas and Coastal Carolina, going 3-3 in those games. Memphis (36-25) faced Clemson and Mississippi State, losing four of five, and advanced to the Conference USA Tournament title game.

Hall's Yellow Jackets, meanwhile, finished with a 32-25 overall record, a 16-14 ACC mark, and won weekend series against two nonconference teams that made the NCAA field: Illinois-Chicago and Rutgers.

"I guess we don't get any credit for playing them out of league in a three-game series," Hall said. "It's just really disappointing."

The selection committee's decisions aside, Hall acknowledged his team hurt itself with poor play down the season's stretch. The Yellow Jackets lost six of their final seven regular-season games and two of three in last week's ACC Tournament.

An ACC tourney run by Wake Forest, the seventh and final ACC team to get in, hurt Georgia Tech's chances as well.

Reach Adam Van Brimmer at (404) 589-8424 or adam.vanbrimmer@morris.com.


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