Story by: Patrick Daniel
The Clemson Tigers find themselves just one win away from reaching their first ever College World Series Championship Round after defeating Oklahoma 6-4 yesterday in the conclusion of their two-day rain-filled event.
The team is enjoying their first off-day since play began on Sunday in Omaha, awaiting the winner of the Oklahoma-South Carolina game to be played this evening. Although the team was not involved in any games today, they did take part in a brief practice session this morning at 11:00 AM on the campus of Creighton University. Following practice, coach Jack Leggett and his team traveled together to see the Omaha Zoo for some rest and relaxation, presumably to ease their minds from the stress of college baseball, even if just for awhile.
Jack Leggett interview:
Clemson has the luxury of resting today and watching the game tonight in order to find their next opponent. The winner between Oklahoma and South Carolina this evening will play Clemson at 9:00 pm EDT Friday night, and must defeat the Tigers twice in order to advance. Clemson only needs to win one more game to advance to their first ever championship round.
Kyle Parker interview:
Coach Leggett will not decide on his starting pitcher for Friday until discovering the opponent, stating that he needs to view the matchups before making any decisions. The Tigers have faced each team this season, taking two of three against South Carolina earlier in the year, and defeating Oklahoma yesterday. Coach Leggett does acknowledge that his top two pitchers will each be available to start, with Casey Harman (8-3) resting since Monday, and Scott Weismann (9-2) not having pitched since Tuesday. Right-hander Dominic Leone (3-1), the freshman that pitched a gem in the decisive win over Alabama in the Super Regionals, will also be available having only pitched briefly in relief thus far in Omaha.
John Hinson interview:
It is impossible to deny the similarities between this year’s College World Series and the event from 2002. Clemson opened up 2-0, with South Carolina being in the loser’s bracket. Carolina proceeded to win and needed to defeat Clemson twice to advance. They did so in blowout fashion, shocking Tiger nation before falling to the hands of the Texas Longhorns in the National Championship game. What happens in the 2010 series is yet to be determined, but it seems hard to imagine either team not having this in mind, whether they will admit it or not.
Mike Freeman interview: