Last week Clemson halted their tailspin with a series win over Florida State. This past weekend Clemson looked to continue their strong performance against a very good NC State team. The Wolfpack entered the series ranked 9th in the country and were looking to make continue making a case for being a Regional host. Their hope was to attack Clemson's pedestrian pitching and do just enough to prevent the Tigers' prolific offense from scoring.
Friday: Clemson 10 - NC State 5
Clemson opened the series against NC State well though they had to work for the series opener win. NC State touched Charlie Barnes in the first and staked out a 3-0 lead. Barnes then settled down for the rest of his appearance and ended up going 6 innings while allowing 4 earned runs. On offense Clemson didn't waste too much time before taking the lead. The Tigers exploded for 6 runs in the second inning and would hold the lead for the rest of the game.
Saturday: NC State 20 - Clemson 9
This was not a pretty game. Anytime an opponent scores 20 runs it isn't good. Frankly I don't really want to touch this game other than to say the 4th inning is a terrible inning and should be banned from baseball, at least on Saturdays.
Sunday: Clemson 2 - NC State 1
After the offensive explosion on Saturday, it was only fair that Clemson and NC State engaged in a defensive struggle on Sunday. Both teams were unable to get much going on offense with Clemson sending reliever Pat Krall to the mound for his first start of the season. Krall was fantastic and didn't give up a run until the 6th inning, his first allowed at home. The Tigers got on the board in the bottom of the fourth after capitalizing on an error by NC State. Chris Okey was about to get thrown out on the basepaths for his own mental error, but a throwing error on the run down allowed him to move to second and Eli White to score from third.
The 1-1 score lasted until the bottom of the ninth when Clemson was able to load the bases and bring Weston Wilson to the plate. Wilson worked a 3-1 count before smashing the ball into center field to win the game. It was yet another walk off win for the Tigers who seem to be making a habit of this sort of thing.
After the last two weekend series it seems like Clemson has pulled out of their slide. The Tigers are still under .500 in ACC play, but it seems likely they will earn an NCAA Tournament berth. Clemson sits at 31-16 (13-14) with the same number of wins from last year. Clemson has an opportunity to finish above .500 in ACC play with a series against Notre Dame to end the season, but first the Tigers will play 3 games against College of Charleston and 3 against Georgia Southern over the next 10 days.