Clemson 9 St. Johns 8
Needing a win to keep the season alive Clemson sent out Jacob Hennessey. The Friday night starter for the season hadn't pitched since May 11th mostly because of arm fatigue. Unfortunately, the issue persisted as Hennessey gave up three runs on two homers to put the Tigers in an early 0-3 hole.
Clemson remained hitless until the 4th when Seth Beer deposited a ball over the right field wall to cut the lead to 3-1. The score remained the same until the sixth. With two on and two out Kyle Wilkie hit a double off the wall that scored Davidson and Williams to tie the game at three. Drew Wharton added an RBI single to make it 4-3 and would later score on a wild pitch to push the score to 5-3.
Clemson would score twice in the seventh, once in the eighth, and once in the ninth putting themselves up 9-5 heading into the bottom of the ninth. Of course, Clemson couldn't make it easy, as Ryley Gilliam was brought in and gave up a three run homer to cut the lead to 9-8 with only one out. Gilliam was then able to get two fly outs to end the game, one of which just missed going out.
The MVP of the game was Ryan Miller who after coming in during the third to relieve Hennessey, pitched into the ninth keeping St. Johns mostly at bay and allowing Clemson’s offense to regain the lead.
Vanderbilt 19 Clemson 6
Vanderbilt wasn’t allowing a winner take all Monday game this year. The Commodores put on a home run clinic Sunday night, breaking their own school record for home runs and tying the NCAA postseason record with nine long balls.
Vanderbilt jumped out early with a first inning solo home run. They’d four runs in the third to grab a commanding 5-0. Clemson would crawl back into the game making it 6-3 after scoring two in the fourth and one in the fifth. The fifth was really the missed opportunity of the game though as they loading the bases for Logan Davidson and Seth Beer, only for Davidson to strike out and Beer to fly out to center to end the inning. Clemson’s pitching depth reared its ugly head and Vanderbilt opened the floodgates to end Clemson’s season.
The Tigers end the season as ACC regular season champions, but the ACC and Clemson were exposed in the regional round of the NCAA tournament as NC State and Louisville were quickly dispatched as well.
Next Season will be interesting as Monte Lee will have to retool the offense after losing guys like Seth Beer and Chris Williams. The pitching must continue to develop - fortunately the weekend rotation should return intact. Monte Lee isn’t on the hot seat, but another quick tournament ouster next season and the locals may grow restless.