Four Tiger pitchers combined to hold Wofford to one unearned run while stranding 10 runners on base in #4 Clemson’s 5-1 victory at Doug Kingsmore Stadium on Wednesday afternoon. The Tigers, who won their fifth game in a row, improved to 6-1 overall, while the Terriers dropped to 6-3. The win marked the Tigers’ 1,000th all-time victory at Doug Kingsmore Stadium, which opened in 1970.
The Terriers took a 1-0 lead in the top of the fourth inning, but Clemson tied the score with a run in the bottom of the fourth and took the lead for good with two runs in the fifth inning. Then, Kevin Pohle and Jonathan Meyer worked out of several jams in the latter stages of the game to keep the lead in Clemson’s favor.
Pohle (1-1), a freshman from Saint Louis, MO, earned his first career victory. In 2.2 innings pitched in relief, he allowed three hits and no runs. Meyer pitched 1.2 scoreless innings with three strikeouts, then Joseph Moorefield retired the only two batters he faced to close out the game. Starter Justin Sarratt, who missed most of 2010 due to injury, pitched 4.0 effective innings, yielding just three hits, one unearned run, and one walk with two strikeouts. The quartet helped Clemson extend its active streak of not allowing an earned run to 24 innings over three games.
Gus White (0-1), the first of five Terrier hurlers, suffered the loss. He yielded two hits, three runs (one earned), and five walks with one strikeout. The pitching staff, which stranded 11 Tigers on base, combined to allow just six hits, but it issued seven walks and three hit-by-pitches.
The Terriers took the game’s first lead in the top of the fourth inning. Mac Doyle reached on a throwing error and Konstantine Diamaduros walked. The runners moved up a base on Josh McKinney’s sacrifice bunt, then Doyle scored on Landon Bennett’s groundout to third. The unearned run ended Clemson’s 18 inning scoreless innings pitched streak dating back to Saturday’s game against Charleston Southern.
In the bottom of the fourth inning, Spencer Kieboom was hit-by-pitch and advanced to second on Will Lamb’s groundout. Freshman Jon McGibbon, who was making his first career start, flared a two-out single to center to score Kieboom.
The Tigers took their first lead in the fifth inning thanks in part to three Wofford errors. Leadoff batter Chris Epps laced a flyball to deep right field that was dropped by Bennett near the fence, as Epps moved all the way to third base on the error. Brad Miller lined a sacrifice fly to left field to plate Epps. After Richie Shaffer reached with two outs on an error and John Hinson blooped a single to left-center, Shaffer scored from third base on an errant throw to first on a failed pickoff attempt.
In the sixth inning, pinch-hitter Phil Pohl led off with a single to center and advanced to second on Jason Stolz’s sacrifice bunt. After Epps was hit-by-pitch and both runners moved up a base on a passed ball, Miller walked to load the bases with one out. For the third time in his third official at-bat of the game, Jeff Schaus hit the ball hard with nothing to show for it, as his sharp grounder up the middle was fielded by a diving Stephen Cantrell, who started a 4-6-3 inning-ending double play.
In the seventh inning, pinch-hitter Josh Hyman and Alex Lee drew one-out walks. Two batters later, Clark Wise reached on a two-out, bunt single to load the bases. But Meyer struck Doyle out looking to end the inning and keep the Tigers ahead 3-1.
Clemson added to its lead in the eighth inning. Pinch-hitter Dominic Attanasio led off with a single to left field and advanced to second on Stolz’s second sacrifice bunt of the game. Epps reached on an infield single to move Attanasio to third, then Epps stole second. Miller ripped a single to left field to score Attanasio. Miller was then picked off first, but he stayed in a rundown long enough to allow Epps to score from third base.
Miller went 1-for-1 with two RBIs and three walks, while Epps scored two runs. Kieboom added two walks, a hit-by-pitch, and threw out two basestealers at second base.
James Foster and Wise paced Wofford’s eight-hit attack with two hits apiece, while Bennett had the Terriers’ lone RBI.
The win was Clemson’s 13th in a row in the series against Wofford. It was also the 100th all-time meeting between Clemson and Wofford in the series that began in 1898.
Clemson will face #4 South Carolina three times at three different sites this weekend. The first matchup will be on Friday at 7:00 PM at Carolina Stadium in Columbia.