On Saturday night against No. 1 overall seed Florida, UConn couldn't complete its fourth ninth-inning comeback of the season, losing 6-5 to a supremely talented Gators team. Playing its next game less than 12 hours later, against Georgia Tech, UConn was again battling into the ninth only to suffer a 7-5 loss to end the season.
Defense was key for UConn early on, with Wills Montgomerie picking off a runner and Joe DeRoche-Duffin launching a nice outfield assist, his second of the season.
In the top of the fourth, the Yellow Jackets came out and scored five runs on starter Wills Montgomerie, but the bullpen came out for the fifth and shut the Georgia Tech offense down until the ninth.
CJ Dandeneau came in for the fifth and gave Coach Penders two shutout innings. He gave way to Devin Over, who gave UConn 1+ innings of shutout ball. Pat Ruotolo came in with a runner on second and one out in the eighth and stranded him to keep the game close.
Meanwhile, the UConn bats were chipping away at the 5-0 Yellow Jackets lead, eventually tying it in the eighth
In the fourth inning, after Georgia Tech rattled off five runs on five hits, the Huskies came back with one of their own. Willy Yahn singled on a hot shot that deflected off the pitcher's mound, then made it to second after a Bobby Melley walk. Bryan Daniello came to the plate with two outs and was credited with a double after the Georgia Tech centerfielder misplayed the ball, allowing Yahn to cross the plate. Georgia Tech held a 5-1 lead after four innings.
Another Husky run came across in the fifth on a balk by Ben Parr, the Yellow Jackets' starting pitcher. There was potential for more UConn runs, but Parr bore down and got out of the bases-loaded jam relatively unscathed.
In the sixth, John Toppa reached on a fielder's choice with runners on the corners and no one out, bringing DeRoche-Duffin across the plate to close the lead to 5-3. On a failed pickoff attempt, Toppa went from first to third. LeFevre smacked a single up the middle to drive Toppa in and close it to 5-4.
Georgia Tech made quick work of UConn in the seventh, but the Huskies tied it up in the eighth. DeRoche-Duffin singled and made it to second after a sacrifice bunt by Daniello. Toppa doubled to right, sending DeRoche-Duffin across the plate to tie the game at five runs apiece.
Ruotolo came on in the eighth and put out the fire, but was unable to shut Georgia Tech down in the ninth. The Yellow Jackets pushed two runs across, with the game-winner on a throwing error by Ruotolo. Another run came in on a single and unfortunately the Huskies were unable to muster any offense in the bottom of the ninth.
UConn finishes the season with a 38-25 record, going 14-3 in its last 17 games. The Huskies captured their first American Athletic Conference Tournament championship and despite the talent lost to graduation and MLB Draft, the Huskies should be back with a strong showing next year behind the likes of Willy Yahn, Tim Cate, Zac Susi and Wills Montgomerie.