Tigers Face College of Charleston, USC

Tiger baseball started the season off with a bang last weekend with an impressive sweep of Auburn. Clemson will battle the College of Charleston and South Carolina this weekend, beginning tonight at 6:00.

For the sixth time under Head Coach Jack Leggett, Clemson opened its home schedule with a three-game sweep. The Tigers defeated Auburn 7-4 on Friday, 8-5 on Saturday and 6-5 on Sunday.

Steve Reba earned the win while Paul Harrelson picked up his first career save in Friday's game. The fireworks began early for Clemson with three first-inning runs. Jeff Baker came to the plate and then crushed the ball to deep center, nearly clearing the 40-foot wall, to give the Tigers an early 3-0 advantage.

Auburn responded with two runs in a two-out, third inning rally, but Baker extended the Clemson lead to 4-2 when his shot to center just cleared the fence and the glove of the leaping centerfielder.

On Saturday, Clemson plated four runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to break a 1-1 tie en route to a 8-5 victory. Starting pitcher Matt Henrie (1-0) hurled six innings of one-run, five-hit ball to earn his first victory on the year. Freshman Tyler Lumsden, making his first appearance on the mound for Clemson, pitched a scoreless ninth inning to record his first career save.

Clemson rallied for four runs in the eighth inning and fended off an Auburn comeback in the ninth inning for a 6-5 victory Sunday afternoon at Doug Kingsmore Stadium. Jarrod Schmidt picked up the win for third-ranked Clemson (3-0).

Clemson led for most of the game but entered the bottom of the eighth trailing 4-2. David Slevin led off with a single, Steve Pyzik walked and L.J. DeMaino was hit by a pitch to load the bases with none out. After a Kyle Frank strikeout, Khalil Greene drew a walk to plate one run. All-American Jeff Baker then stepped to the plate and drilled a line drive to right field that cleared the bases and gave Clemson a 6-4 lead heading into the ninth.

After loading the bases with no outs in the top of the ninth, Auburn scored a run when Bobby Huddleston hit an infield single. John Tyler grounded back to Clemson closer Paul Harrelson, who threw to home plate for a force out. Harrelson then induced a 4-6-3 double play to end the game and earn his second save of the year.

Clemson Moves Up One in Polls
Clemson moved up one spot in all three polls released on Monday. The Tigers returned to their preseason ranking of second according to Baseball America and jumped a spot to third in both Collegiate Baseball and the USA Today/Baseball Weekly Coaches Poll.

Leggett vs. Ranked Teams
With his team's sweep of 25th-ranked Auburn, Clemson Head Coach Jack Leggett has 95 wins over top-25 teams since taking the helm in 1994. The two matchups with South Carolina this weekend will give Leggett a chance for victory over a top-five team. Leggett has 24 victories over teams ranked in the top-five by one of the three major polls, the last being a 7-4 win at #4 South Carolina on March 4, 2001.

Clemson vs. College of Charleston
The Tigers and Cougars met for the first time in 89 years last season on March 7th. Clemson survived a comeback effort to win the game 5-3. Steven Jackson, a Summerville, SC, native, started against his hometown team and got his second straight win of the year by pitching six innings and allowing only one run off six hits. Jeff Baker went 2-3 with one RBI to lead the offense. Clemson leads the all-time series 7-0, with six of those games being played between 1899-1912.

Charleston's Clemson Connection
College of Charleston Head Coach John Pawlowski played his college baseball at Clemson from 1983-85. The Tigers went 104-67-2 during that time, including two ACC regular season co-championships. He had a 9-3 record as a junior with 17 starts and was a sixth-round draft pick of the Chicago White Sox in 1985.

Pawlowski also coached at Clemson from 1993-98 and was the pitching coach during the 1996 season that featured first-round draft picks Kris Benson and Billy Koch.

Clemson vs. South Carolina
Clemson will meet South Carolina for the 254th time on Saturday, with Clemson holding a 149-102-2 advantage. The Tigers took one of four games last year, a 7-4 win in Columbia on March 4th. The teams will play on Saturday in Columbia and then Sunday in Clemson. The two teams will then play April 17th at Clemson before wrapping up the season series in Columbia on April 24th.

Schedule:

Clemson vs. College of Charleston
March 1, 2002,
Patriots Point Field, Charleston, SC, Fri.: 6:00 PM

Clemson vs. South Carolina
March 2-3, 2002
Sat: Sarge Frye Field, Columbia, SC, 4:00 PM (CTSP)
Sun: Doug Kingsmore Stadium, Clemson, SC, 2:00 PM (CTSP)

Probable Starters:
Friday: Steven Jackson (RHP; 0-0, 1.50 ERA) vs. Charlie Winsky (RHP; 2-1, 5.82 ERA) or Ryan Johnson (RHP; 3-0, 2.25 ERA)

Saturday: Steve Reba (RHP; 1-0, 4.50 ERA) vs. David Marchbanks (RHP; 3-0, 2.41 ERA)

Sunday: Matt Henrie (RHP; 1-0, 1.50 ERA) vs. Gary Bell (LHP; 3-0, 2.76 ERA) or Chris Spigner (RHP; 1-0, 4.00 ERA)

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