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March 18, 2012

Clemson University Overall Season Record: 9-8 ACC Regular-Season Record: 3-3

Last Week: 3-1 Wed. L, Away vs. Western Carolina, 8-4 Fri. W, Home vs. Boston College, 6-4 Sat. W, Home vs. Boston College, 6-3 Sun. W, Home vs. Boston College, 5-1

Next Week Tue. Home vs. Elon, 6:30 PM Wed. Neutral* vs. Elon, 5:00 PM Fri. Away vs. Virginia, 6:00 PM Sat. Away vs. Virginia, 1:00 PM Sun. Away vs. Virginia, 1:00 PM * – Greenville, SC

Last Week’s Game Notes Clemson went 3-1 in four games this past week, which included a midweek loss at Western Carolina and a three-game sweep of Boston College at home.

On the week, the Tigers outscored the opposition 21-16 and batted .275 with a .359 slugging percentage and .356 on-base percentage. They also totaled five doubles, two homers, 16 walks, and three stolen bases. Clemson fielded at a .979 clip as well.

Steve Wilkerson paced the Tigers at the plate by going 9-for-18 with two doubles, two RBIs, three runs, and two steals. Brad Felder went 4-for-12 with two homers, four RBIs, four runs, and a steal, while Thomas Brittle went 4-for-12 with three runs. However, Brittle suffered a lacerated finger on Sunday and will be out of action for multiple games.

The Tiger pitching staff had a 4.11 ERA and .259 opponents’ batting average on the week. The staff also allowed 35 hits and 16 walks with 35 strikeouts in 35.0 innings pitched.

In two relief appearances, Scott Firth allowed five hits and no runs with five strikeouts in 5.2 innings pitched. Jonathan Meyer also pitched well this past week in two relief appearances. He allowed one run and no walks with six strikeouts in 4.1 innings pitched.

Behind seven runs on six hits in the fourth inning, Western Carolina topped Clemson 8-4 at Hennon Stadium in Cullowhee, NC on March 14. The Tigers scored three runs thanks in part to three Catamount errors in the third inning to build a 4-1 lead. However, Luke Gragg started the fourth inning with a pinch-hit single, scored a run, and capped the scoring in the frame with a two-run single. Reliever Jon Nadale pitched 4.0 scoreless innings with four strikeouts to earn the win. Wilkerson went 3-for-4 to lead the Tigers, who were outhit 14-7.

Clemson then swept Boston College by a combined score of 17-8 at Doug Kingsmore Stadium from March 16-18. Clemson outhit the Eagles .293 to .214 and totaled five doubles, two homers, 14 walks against only 13 strikeouts, and three steals. Wilkerson went 6-for-14 to lead the Tigers, while Felder went 4-for-11 with two homers, four RBIs, and four runs. The Tiger pitching staff had a 2.67 ERA and 26 strikeouts against 12 walks. Clemson committed just one error and had a .991 fielding percentage as well.

In game-one on March 16, Kevin Brady struck out nine batters in 6.2 innings pitched to lead Clemson to a 6-4 victory over Boston College. Felder’s two-run homer in the second inning gave Clemson a 3-0 lead. The Eagles closed in on the Tigers with three homers, including two by Tom Bourdon. But Boston College could not pull even and Matt Campbell recorded the save. The three Clemson pitchers combined for 13 strikeouts, while eight different Tigers had one hit apiece at the plate. Tiger batters combined to walk six times and struck out just twice as well.

In game-two on March 17, Dominic Leone and Meyer combined to allow just four hits in Clemson’s 6-3 win over Boston College. Leone yielded just one hit in 5.2 innings pitched to earn the win, while Meyer struck out five batters against no walks in the 3.1 innings pitched to record the save. Trailing 2-1, the Tigers scored four runs in the second inning and never relinquished the lead. Felder added a solo homer in the seventh inning. Wilkerson had a game-high three hits, while Phil Pohl went 2-for-3 with two RBIs and a walk.

In game-three on March 18, Clemson scored all five of its runs in the third inning to defeat Boston College 5-1. Joe Costigan’s two-run single up the middle highlighted Clemson’s five-run third inning. Kevin Pohle pitched 6.2 innings, allowing one run and no walks with five strikeouts to earn the win. Firth pitched 2.1 scoreless innings to close out the game. Wilkerson had a team-high two hits for Clemson, who totaled 10 hits. Boston College at least one hit in every inning, but it left at least one runner on base in every inning. Bourdon had three doubles to lead the Eagles’ 11-hit attack.

2012 Season Notes Clemson has a 9-8 overall record and 3-3 ACC mark on the season. Clemson has lost is eight games by a combined 15 runs, which includes five one-run losses.

The Tigers have shown resilience throughout the season. They have scored first in a game just five times in 17 contests, but they have seven come-from-behind wins among their nine overall victories.

The Tigers are hitting .272 with a .399 slugging percentage and .370 on-base percentage thanks to 77 walks and 19 hit-by-pitches in 2012. The team has also totaled 31 doubles, two triples, 13 homers, and 13 stolen bases. Clemson is fielding at a .966 clip as well.

Richie Shaffer is hitting a team-best .393 with four homers, eight doubles, one triple, 16 RBIs, 19 runs, 18 walks against only eight strikeouts, a .532 on-base percentage, and a .754 slugging percentage.

Steve Wilkerson is hitting .365 with five doubles, nine RBIs, 13 runs, and four steals. He has a team-tying-high eight multi-hit games in only 14 games this season. Phil Pohl is batting .328 with three homers and a team-high 20 RBIs.

The pitching staff has a 3.54 ERA and .271 opponents’ batting average in 155.0 innings pitched this season. It has allowed 161 hits and 63 walks with 134 strikeouts, good for a 2.13 strikeout-to-walk ratio.

Kevin Pohle leads the staff with a 1.09 ERA and a 3-0 record in 24.2 innings pitched over five appearances (three starts). Kevin Brady has a 2.89 ERA and 31 strikeouts against nine walks in a team-high 28.0 innings pitched over five starts.

Scott Firth has been the team’s best reliever, as he is 1-0 with a 1.15 ERA in 15.2 innings pitched over eight relief appearances. He also has 19 strikeouts and has allowed only one extra-base hit.

Jack Leggett is fast approaching a milestone. He has 1,198 career wins in his 33rd season as a head coach. With two more wins, he will become just the 15th coach in history to amass 1,200 victories as a Division I head coach.

Clemson will return to action with midweek games against Elon at two different sites. On Tuesday night, the two will square off at Doug Kingsmore Stadium, then they will play at Fluor Field in Greenville, SC on Wednesday. Over the weekend, the Tigers will play their first three-game series away from home in 2012 when they face Virginia.

The upcoming five-game week marks the first of four straight, five-game weeks for the Tigers. That means Clemson is scheduled to play a game on 20 of 27 days starting on Tuesday.