Tigers Crush Furman

CLEMSON – Having lost five of its last six games and sporting a team batting average of just .281, the Clemson baseball team needed a confidence boost in the biggest of ways. <br>

And Furman proved to be exactly what the doctor ordered as the Tigers pounded out 15 hits, which included two doubles and two home runs, to get the easy 11-1 victory on a miserable day weather wise Wednesday at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.

"I think it will help us right now," Clemson coach Jack Leggett said. "We needed something good and something positive. … We haven't played badly. We really haven't played badly at all this season. It's just we're one step away from being where we want to be."

Every starter for Clemson (6-7) with the exception of one had at least one hit, with centerfielder Brad Chalk leading the way by going 3-for-3 with two runs scored.

Tigers first baseman Andy D'Alessio, who entered the game in a season-long slump hitting just .132, went 1-for-3 with a three-run double in the first that proved to be all that the Tigers needed.

"When we're hitting, it helps out the defense and it takes pressure off the pitching," D'Alessio said. "And with our pitching staff, if we start to hit we can really go a long way. If everybody's hitting throughout the lineup like we did today, then we're going to be able to take it to another level like where we should be at."

Stephen Faris pitched five shutout innings of four-hit ball to get the win. Four other Clemson pitchers each pitched one inning, with Daniel Moskos allowing the only run, a solo home run to Case Cassedy in the sixth inning.

The frustrating part with the season thus far from Clemson's standpoint is that it just hasn't been able to get over the proverbial hump. When the Tigers pitch well, it seems the hitting is missing and vice versa.

Then when it looks as though both are going well, there's been a defensive miscue.

Very few times has it all come together in the same game. But maybe with the big win over the Paladins (7-9), things are in the process of changing.

"We're going into this weekend with a better feeling than we had and get little confidence going and a little momentum going," Leggett said. "So hopefully now we can concentrate on the weekend. …

"I haven't felt like we've played poorly or were overmatched or outmanned. I haven't felt that at all with anybody we've played. It's just a matter of us doing the little things over the course of the ball game and having a few things go our way and then we'd be off to the races."

The Tigers will need to be in a full sprint with 13th ranked North Carolina coming to town for a three-game series starting Friday that opens ACC play. Josh Cribb (1-1, 3.74 ERA) will get the start in Game 1, with Kris Harvey (2-1, 4.37) going Saturday and Robert Rohrbaugh (0-1, 6.00) getting the call on Sunday.

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