TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Limping into the NCAA Regional amid a prolonged slump, Georgia battered Ohio State 24-6 behind a season-high 23 hits Friday night, including seven home runs.
"It was three weeks of pent-up frustration that came out," said Georgia coach David Perno, whose team had dropped 14 of its previous 19 games. "We figured some things out this week and put it to good use."
The second-seeded Bulldogs (38-22) scored eight runs in the first off Buckeyes All-American Alex Wimmers and kept the pressure up, despite a five-hour weather delay.
Rich Poythress belted three homers and drove in seven runs, while Matt Cerione and Joey Lewis combined for nine RBI on two homers each.
"Its huge for us," Poythress said of the victory. "Ive been saying all week that (the regional) is a chance to start over. Getting the confidence going is big."
Georgia wasted no time as Cerione and Lewis homered in the first off Wimmers (9-2), who walked seven and surrendered eight hits in four innings of work.
"You couldnt ask for a better start," Perno said.
The third-seeded Buckeyes (40-18) got a two-run double from Ryan Dew in the third to pull within 8-2 before Poythress and Lewis got those runs back with solo homers in the fourth. Poythress, whose seven RBI gives him a single-season record 84 on the season, tacked on a two-run homer in the seventh.
Poythress and Cerione each contributed grand slams in a 10-run eighth inning as the Bulldogs established a team record with 104 homers on the season.
Georgia will meet the winner of Fridays late game between top-seeded Florida State and fourth-seeded Marist on Saturday at 4 p.m.
Ohio State will face the loser at noon Saturday.