Tigers Down Maine, 7-6

Kyle Frank had a 4-for-4 night at the plate and freshman Herman Demmink's two-run single in the sixth inning gave Clemson the lead for good in the Tigers 7-6 win over Maine on Friday night. The victory was the second in the series for the Tigers, who are now 15-3 for the season.

It was Clemson's 12th consecutive victory dating to March 2. Six of the 12 wins have been by two runs or less. Maine fell to 9-5 for the season. Clemson coach Jack Leggett is now 12-0 against his alma mater as Clemson head coach. Clemson will try for the series sweep on Saturday afternoon at 2:00 PM.

Frank was a perfect 4-4 at the plate and scored two runs. He had three singles and a double and raised his season average from .273 to .322 with the productive evening. Frank was one of three Clemson outfielders who had outstanding evenings. In fact, Frank (CF), Jeff Hourigan (RF) and Roberto Valiente (LF) were a combined 9-12 at the plate with four RBIs. Valiente was 3-4 on the night, a season high in terms of hits, while Hourigan was 2-4 with a home run.

Clemson took a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning. Garrick Evans led off the game with a double to right field. After Russell Triplett ground out to shortstop, Michael Johnson hit a ground ball to third. Maine third baseman Joe Drapeau threw the ball away, allowing Evans to score.

After Brad McCann flew out to left field, Frank recorded the first of his four hits to drive on Johnson, who had advanced to second on the throwing error. The inning continued when Hourigan singled to right. Valiente then singled to left to score Frank with the third run of the inning.

Maine came back with two runs in the second and one in the third. In the second, the Black Bears got on the board thanks to a walk, a double by Jesse Carton, a ground out and a sacrifice fly by Mike Ferriggi. The Black Bears tied the game in the third on a single by Alain Picard and a double by Drapeau. Clemson took a 5-3 lead in the bottom of the third on a two-out double by Frank and Hourigan's first home run of the season.

But, Maine tied the game a half inning later with two runs in the fourth. Mike Livulpi and Steve Gambale had RBI singles to tie the game. Maine took the lead in the top of the fifth on two singles, a walk and a ground out.

Clemson came back in the bottom of the sixth with what proved to be the winning rally. Valiente opened the inning with a single to right. Collin Mahoney then doubled to the opposite field to move Valiente to third. Demmink, the number-nine man in the Clemson order, then singled down the left field line to score both runners.

Clemson's relief pitching shut out the Black Bears over the last four innings. Adam Walker, who got his first win as a Clemson Tiger, combined with Josh Cribb and Patrick Hogan to allow just three hits over the last four innings. The last eight Maine batters failed to reach first base.

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