Clemson beat Duke 8-4 Saturday in game one of a doubleheader to clinch a series victory. The Blue Devils avoided a sweep with a 13-1 win in game two.
Game One story:
Every Tiger starter had at least one hit and Zack Erwin pitched 4.1 scoreless innings in relief in Clemson’s 8-4 win over Duke in the first game of a doubleheader at Doug Kingsmore Stadium on Saturday afternoon. The Tigers, who took a 2-0 lead in the series, improved to 15-7 overall and 5-3 in the ACC. The Blue Devils fell to 11-12 overall and 2-6 in ACC play.
Erwin (2-0) earned the win by allowing just three hits, no runs, and one walk with three strikeouts in 4.1 innings pitched in relief.
Duke starter Drew Van Orden (1-3) suffered the loss, as he gave up five hits, five runs (three earned), and three walks with three strikeouts in 3.0 innings pitched.
The Blue Devils scored their first runs of the series in the top of the first inning. Jeff Kremer lined a one-out double to left-center and Grant McCabe walked. Two batters later, Jordan Betts grounded a two-out single up the middle to score Kremer. Matt Berezo followed with another single up the middle to plate McCabe.
In the bottom of the first inning, Steven Duggar reached with one out and advanced to second on a throwing error by Betts at third. Two batters later with two outs, Garrett Boulware flared a 1-2 pitch to right field for a single to score Duggar.
Thomas Brittle led off the second inning with an eight-pitch walk and advanced to third on an error on a failed pickoff attempt. Brittle then tied the score when he came home on a wild pitch.
In the third inning, Steve Wilkerson grounded a one-out double down the right-field line and scored on Boulware’s single to left field to give Clemson a 3-2 lead.
Jay Baum led off the fourth inning with a five-pitch walk and stole second. Tyler Krieger lined a single to center to score Baum. Three batters later, Wilkerson laced a two-out double down the left-field line to score Krieger.
In the top of the fifth inning, Andy Perez led off with a single up the middle and Grant McCabe later hit a one-out single up the middle. After Perez was picked off second for out #2, Chris Marconcini lined a double to right-center to score McCabe. Betts then laced a double down the left-field line to score Marconcini, cutting Clemson’s lead to 5-4.
Clemson responded in the bottom of the fifth inning. Shane Kennedy led off with a single to left and stole second. Three batters later with two outs, Baum belted a single through the left side to score Kennedy. It was the 10th inning in a row Clemson scored at least one run dating to Friday’s game.
Jon McGibbon led off the eighth inning with a single up the middle and Brittle reached on a bunt single, then both runners moved up a base on a wild pitch. After the next two Tigers were retired, Tyler Slaton grounded a two-out single up the middle to score McGibbon and Brittle.
Boulware went 2-for-4 with two RBIs to lead Clemson’s 12-hit attack. Wilkerson and Kennedy also added two hits apiece.
Kremer went 3-for-5 with a double and run to lead Duke, who totaled 12 hits in the contest.
Game Two story:
Duke broke the game open with eight runs in the fourth inning in its 13-1 win over Clemson in the second game of a doubleheader at Doug Kingsmore Stadium on Saturday afternoon. The Blue Devils, who snapped Clemson’s eight-game winning streak in the series, improved to 12-12 overall and 3-6 in the ACC. The Tigers, who won the series 2-1, dropped to 15-8 overall and 5-4 in ACC play.
The Blue Devils scored three two-out runs in the second inning, then blew the game open with eight runs in the fourth inning, six of which came with two outs. The Tigers scored their lone run in the sixth inning, but it was not enough, as Duke ended its six-game losing streak at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.
Robert Huber (3-2), the first of three Duke hurlers, earned the win in 6.0 innings pitched. He gave up five hits, one run, and four walks with three strikeouts. Michael Matuella retired all six batters he faced, then Andrew Istler pitched a perfect ninth inning to close out the game.
Tiger starter Scott Firth (2-4) suffered the loss, as he yielded eight hits, six runs, and two walks with three strikeouts in 3.1 innings pitched.
The Blue Devils grabbed the game’s first lead in the second inning. Matt Berezo hit a one-out single up the middle and Mark Lumpa singled through the left side. Two batters later, Kenny Koplove laced a two-out single through the left side. Leftfielder Tyler Slaton’s throw to home would have been received in plenty of time at the plate for the inning-ending out, but his throw sailed over catcher Garrett Boulware to allow Berezo to score. Andy Perez then lined a triple down the right-field line to score Lumpa and Koplove.
In the bottom of the second inning, each of the first four Tigers who stepped to the plate reached base, two on singles and two on walks, but the Tigers failed to dent the scoreboard. Shane Kennedy was caught stealing at second base and Jon McGibbon was thrown out at home by rightfielder Jeff Kremer after Jay Baum’s single.
The Blue Devils tacked on eight runs on six hits in the fourth inning. Reed Anthes led off with a bloop single to center on an 0-2 pitch and advanced to second on Koplove’s sacrifice bunt. Perez followed with a double to left-center to score Anthes. Kremer lined a 1-2 pitch down the left-field line for a single to score Perez. Two batters later with two outs, Chris Marconcini walked, then Jordan Betts grounded a double over the third-base bag to score Kremer and Marconcini. Berezo followed with a single to left-center to score Betts. Lumpa and Anthes walked to load the bases, then Koplove was hit-by-pitch to score Berezo. Perez followed with an infield single to score Lumpa and Anthes.
In the top of the sixth inning, Koplove grounded a one-out single up the middle and Anthony D’Alessandro walked. D’Alessandro was retired at second on Kremer’s fielder’s choice, then Koplove scored on an error on the play.
Pinch-hitter Joe Costigan led off the bottom of the sixth inning with a flyball that fell for a double in shallow right-center. McGibbon’s flyout to right-center moved Costigan to third, then Thomas Brittle hit a sacrifice fly to right field to score Costigan.
In the eighth inning, Anthes led off with a walk and pinch-hitter Angelo La Bruna hit a double to right-center to advance Anthes to third. Anthes then scored on a wild pitch.
Perez led Duke’s 15-hit attack by going 3-for-4 with a double, triple, one run, five RBIs, and one steal. Grant McCabe went 3-for-6, while Berezo and Koplove added two hits apiece. Anthes scored a game-high three runs as well.
McGibbon had a team-high two hits for Clemson, who totaled five hits in the contest.
Clemson will face Georgia in a two-game, midweek, home-and-home series starting Tuesday at 7:00 PM in Athens, GA. The game will be televised by CSS.