March 16, 2001
COLLEGE PARK, Md. – The Maryland baseball team scored four times in the ninth inning but it was not quite enough as No. 14 Clemson defeated the Terps, 8-6, Friday afternoon at Shipley Field.
The Tigers improved to 12-5 overall and 1-0 in the ACC while Maryland dropped to 5-10 on the year and 0-1 in the conference.
In the first ACC game of the season for both schools, it was Clemson that got on the scoreboard first with one run in the top of the first inning. Jeff Baker drove in Casey Stone to put the Tigers ahead 1-0 with a RBI single to center field.
The Tigers added three more runs in the second. Clemson had three hits in the inning, including a RBI single off the bat of Chad Coder. Baker had the other big blow in the second with a two-out, two-run, single to center, to give Clemson a 4-0 advantage.
Another run in the fourth made it 5-0 Clemson before the Terrapins started to fight back. Kevin McDonald (Rockaway, N.J.) blasted a homerun to center, to lead off the Maryland fourth, to close the Tiger lead to 5-1. The homer was the fifth this season for McDonald, which leads the team.
McDonald kept his hot bat going in the sixth as he led off the inning with a double down the left field line. Later in the inning, Sean Lomas (Brewster, N.Y.) singled to center, scoring McDonald, to close the gap to 5-2.
The Tigers scored three more times in the seventh to break the game open. A pitch to start the seventh hit Khalil Greene and Baker brought him home with a double down the left field line to score Clemsonsup>TMs first > run of the inning. Baker had a fine day at the plate, finishing 3-for-5 with four RBIs. Steve Pyzik singled to right field later in the inning, scoring two, to put the Tigers ahead 8-2.
The Terrapins would not go down without a fight, scoring four times in the ninth inning. Clemson reliever B.J. LaMura walked the first two batters in the inning and then gave up a towering double off the bat of Chuck Easter (Baltimore, Md.), to cut the deficit to 8-3. McDonald then came to the plate and knocked in his second run of the game, scoring Brian Patenaude (Marietta, Ga.) on a RBI groundout, to make the score 8-4. John McCurdy (Crofton, Md.) reached on a throwing error by LaMura later in the ninth, to score Easter, and bring the Terps to within three, 8-5. Daryl Whitmer (Waldorf, Md.) followed with a RBI single to center, scoring McCurdy, to close the lead to 8-6. With the tying run at the plate, Ray Gemmill (Silver Spring, Md.) flied out to deep center, to end the Maryland rally.
McDonald finished the afternoon 2-for-5 with two runs, two RBIs and he extended his career-high hitting streak to 11 games. Easter also finished with two hits, going 2-for-4 with a run and a RBI for the Terrapins.
Clemson starter Steve Reba (4-0) was strong, pitching 5.1 innings and allowing just two runs on five hits to pick up his fourth win of the season. Maryland starting pitcher, Jared Stuart (Corning, N.Y.), worked 6.2 innings, yielding eight runs on nine hits to fall to 1-2.
The two teams will play the second game of the three-game set tomorrow at 1:00 p.m. at Shipley Field.
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