Big series win that went about as I had hoped it might, and our pitching held up quite well aside from Clate, who I thought would get shelled and did end up getting beat around pretty soundly by the potent GT lineup. This puts Clemson in very good position to move up in the RPI and end up hosting a Regional, which would be an over achievement for this team given our preseason expectations.
Clemson pitching did a very good job of controlling the top of the GT lineup, which had been raking the ball coming into the series. Leadoff hitter Kyle Wren went 3-for-15, while 2-hole Brandon Thomas went 2-for-12.
Friday Game 1 - Clemson 11-3
Gossett vs. Buck Farmer started as a pitching duel, but over the last 4 innings Clemson pounded away and scored all 11 runs.
In the 5th we started getting to Farmer. Tyler Krieger led off the inning with a walk and McGibbon hit a routine DP ball to 2nd and the fielder botched the throw, and Tyler went to 3rd. After Brittle popped out, Slaton hit a grounder to 2nd that scored Krieger. Steve Wilkerson came up next and doubled scoring McGibbon to put CU up 2-0.
In the 6th, Joe Costigan singled and Krieger reached on a bunt. After Gibson was called in to run for Costigan, McGibbon singled up the middle to make it 3-0.
After GT pushed a run across to make it 3-1, Clemson answered with 5 more in the 7th and 3 in the 8th to extend it beyond their reach.
Gossett went 7, allowing 5 hits and 2 walks, while striking out 4 for his 7th win of the season.
Buck Farmer took the loss, after allowing 8 runs (4 earned) in 6 1/3 innings, while walking 5.
Friday Game 2 - Clemson 4-3 in 11
The night game was a terribly long game that seemed to drag after about the 7th inning, but Tyler Krieger finally got a hit with a runner on base in the 11th to end it after we had several chances to clinch it and blew them.
Matt Crownover was very good for 5 innings before running into some trouble in the 6th. Kyle Wren led off with a double to RF and reached 3rd on a sacrifice, but the next batter doubled him home to push the first run across. After Palka followed with a single, Crownover was pulled for Andrews, who got the ground ball he needed but the runner scored to make it 2-0. Both runs were charged to Crownover.
The game remained 2-0 until Clemson scored in the 8th, but GT pushed an insurance run across in the 9th against Andrews to make it 3-1.
In the bottom frame, Clemson scored twice to tie it up. Jon McGibbon led off with a walk and scored on a triple by Brittle down the RF line. Slaton walked and stole 2nd, then they put WIlkerson on base to load them. Duggar then gave them the DP they needed and the tying run scored. Garrett Boulware flied out, stranding Slaton at 3rd.
Clemson loaded the bases in the 10th and could not push a run across, and had them loaded again in the 11th. Thankfully Krieger singled this time and scored Boulware to end the game.
Saturday - GT 14-9
As I expected, Clate Schmidt got hammered, giving up 2 in the first and getting the GT merry-go-round going in the 10-run 5th inning before being pulled.
Clemson answered the 2 run GT 1st inning with 4 of our own and another in the 3rd to make it 5-2 heading into the 5th inning, but GT pushed 10 across against 3 Clemson pitchers. Schmidt gave up the first 2, but Koerner and Erwin let them clear the bases, giving up 2 (earned) runs each. Clemson made 3 errors in the game, 1 in the first and 2 in this inning by Schmidt and Koerner themselves.
Clemson kept it within reach by pushing 3 across in the bottom of the 5th and made it 12-9 after the 7th, but GT scored twice more against Campbell in the 9th and Clemson could do nothing with Jonathan Roberts at the end of the game.
Clemson hit well in this game, but hardly anything went for extra bases, and we made too many clutch errors that let them blow this one open.
Evans led the Yellow Jackets' 18-hit attack by going 6-for-6 with two homers, one double, four RBIs, and four runs. Palka went 3-for-6 with one homer, two doubles, four RBIs, and three runs. Dove and Murray added two hits and two RBIs apiece. Every Yellow Jacket batter had at least one hit in the contest.
Clemson's next series against Maryland starts next Saturday at 1pm.