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Clemson Weekly Baseball Wrapup

March 15, 2009

Clemson University Overall Season Record: 11-4 ACC Regular-Season Record: 4-2

Last Week: 5-0 Tue. W, Home vs. Michigan State, 15-2 Wed. W, Neutral vs. Michigan State, 6-1 (Greenville, SC) Fri. W, Home vs. Wake Forest, 4-1 (Game 1) Fri. W, Home vs. Wake Forest, 6-1 (Game 2) Sun. W, Home vs. Wake Forest, 7-3

Next Week Tue. Home vs. Presbyterian, 6:30 PM Wed. Home vs. USC Upstate, 6:30 PM Fri. Away vs. Florida State, 6:00 PM Sat. Away vs. Florida State, 6:00 PM Sun. Away vs. Florida State, 1:00 PM

Notes Clemson, ranked #22 in the nation, went 5-0 in five games this past week, which included two wins over Michigan State and a three-game sweep of Wake Forest over the weekend.

Clemson defeated Michigan State twice in two games by a combined score of 21-3 on March 10,11. The Tigers outhit the Spartans .379 to .143 and had a .488 on-base percentage. Mike Freeman went 6-for-9 with two doubles, while Ben Paulsen was 4-for-8 with two doubles in the series. Wilson Boyd added three hits and six RBIs as well. The Tiger pitching staff had a 1.50 ERA and 20 strikeouts against five walks.

Eleven Tigers had a hit and 10 scored a run in Clemson’s 15-2 win over Michigan State at Doug Kingsmore Stadium on March 10. Clemson scored four runs in the first inning, capped by Boyd’s three-run homer. The Tigers added eight combined runs in the seventh and eighth innings. Clemson walked 10 times and struck out just three times, while four Tiger pitchers combined for six strikeouts against no walks. Will Lamb had a game-high three hits in his first career start, while Freeman and Paulsen both totaled two hits and two RBIs. Starter Justin Sarratt retired the first 13 batters and earned the win by pitching 6.0 innings of three-hit ball.

Freeman went 4-for-4 to lead Clemson to a 6-1 win over Michigan State at Fluor Field in Greenville, SC on March 11. Boyd’s two-run double in the first inning gave the Tigers the lead for good. Paulsen and Boyd had two hits apiece, while Boyd totaled a game-high three RBIs. Jeff Schaus added a solo homer as well. Graham Stoneburner pitched 3.1 scoreless innings in relief with six strikeouts to earn the win. Six Tiger pitchers combined for 14 strikeouts and limited Michigan State to only four hits, including 0-for-13 with runners on base. The Spartans put 10 batters on base but could only score one run while leaving nine runners on base.

Clemson then swept Wake Forest in three games at Doug Kingsmore Stadium from March 13-15. Clemson outscored the Demon Deacons 17-5 and outhit them .350 to .238, including .276 to .118 with runners in scoring position. Kyle Parker went 7-for-12 (.583) with two homers and seven RBIs, while Freeman went 6-for-13 (.462) with five runs, two doubles, and one triple. The Tiger pitching staff had a 1.67 ERA and totaled 22 strikeouts against six walks. The staff also stranded 29 Demon Deacons on base.

In game-one on March 13, which was the first game of a doubleheader, Parker hit a two-run homer in the sixth inning to give Clemson the lead for good in its 4-1 win over Wake Forest. The Demon Deacons had taken a 1-0 lead in the top of the sixth inning. Parker, who was 3-for-4 with a homer and three RBIs, added a run-scoring single in the seventh inning. The Tigers outhit Wake Forest 14-8 and had five players with at least two hits. Tomas Cruz pitched 3.0 scoreless innings in relief of two-hit ball to earn the win, while Lamb retired the only batter he faced to record his first career save. Starter Trey Delk also struck out eight batters in 5.2 innings pitched.

In game-two on March 13, which was the second game of a doubleheader, Parker went 3-for-5 with a homer, two runs, and three RBIs in Clemson’s 6-1 victory over Wake Forest. After Wake Forest stranded the potential tying run on third base with no outs in the top of the seventh inning, Parker gave the Tigers a 4-1 lead with a two-run homer in the bottom of the seventh inning. The Tigers, who outhit the Demon Deacons 13-10, added another run in the seventh and one run in the eighth inning on Parker’s third hit of the game. Freeman, Parker, and Richard Mounce all had three hits apiece. Starter Casey Harman earned the win, as he allowed just one run and no walks in 6.1 innings pitched.

In game-three on March 15, Chris Dwyer pitched 7.0 strong innings to lead Clemson to a 7-3 win over Wake Forest. Dwyer allowed six hits and two runs with five strikeouts to earn the victory. The Tigers had nine baserunners but stranded only one, while the Demon Deacons stranded seven runners on base. Clemson had three sacrifice flies, one sacrifice bunt, and three stolen bases. The Tigers scored two runs in the first inning and held the lead for the entire game. Paulsen hit a two-run homer in the fifth inning, as he totaled two hits and three RBIs in the game. Freeman added a double, triple, and three runs.

During the week, the Tigers hit .361 with a .548 slugging percentage and .423 on-base percentage along with 10 stolen bases. The pitching staff had a 1.60 ERA and .202 opponents’ batting average. Clemson outscored its two opponents by a combined score of 38-8 during the week.

Freeman led the Tigers at the plate by going 12-for-22 (.545) with four doubles, one triple, three RBIs, eight runs, and a .583 on-base percentage. Paulsen went 8-for-17 (.471) with two doubles, one homer, and six RBIs, while Parker was 7-for-19 (.368) with two homers and seven RBIs.

Clemson sports an 11-4 overall record and 4-2 ACC mark on the season. The Tigers are in first place in the ACC Atlantic Division, ahead of second-place Boston College (2-2).

The Tigers are hitting .276 with a .406 slugging percentage and .371 on-base percentage in 15 games. Paulsen leads the team with a .414 batting average along with four doubles, two homers, and 14 RBIs. Freeman has raised his batting average to .309 and has five doubles, two triples, and a .451 on-base percentage. Parker has added two homers and 14 RBIs as well.

The pitching staff has a 2.57 ERA and .212 opponents’ batting average on the season. It has also struck out 134 against 39 walks (3.4-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio) and has given up just 24 extra-base hits (1.6 per game). The team is fielding at a .966 clip as well.

Dwyer is 2-0 with a 1.99 ERA and .156 opponents’ batting average in 22.2 innings pitched over four starts. He has also allowed just one extra-base hit and six walks with 20 strikeouts. Lamb has the team’s lone save and has allowed just one hit and no runs in 7.0 innings pitched over four relief appearances. Harman has walked two against 18 strikeouts as well.

The Tigers will play two midweek home games against Presbyterian (Tuesday) and USC Upstate (Wednesday) before traveling to Tallahassee to take on Florida State in a three-game series over the weekend.