Tigers Get Back on Track

Clemson secured its 17th straight 40-win season Wednesday night with a 9-2 decision over Wofford at Doug Kingsmore Stadium. The top-ranked Tigers notched a season-hgh seven stolen bases and improved to 40-8 on the year while dropping the Terriers to 23-26.

The Tigers jumped out to an early lead in the first inning. Singles by designated hitter Russell Triplett and Kyle Frank along with some aggressive base running put runners on second and third with no outs. The runners scored on consecutive groundouts by Khalil Greene and Jeff Baker to put Clemson ahead 2-0.

Wofford would even the score with single runs in the second and third innings. Right fielder Jarrod Schmidt could not hang on to Kyle Raulinaitis' deep fly ball, allowing Brian Casey to score. In the third, David Dufour hit an RBI-double to right center that made it a 2-2 game.

The Tigers regained the lead in the bottom of the third. Baker started the scoring with an RBI-single and Schmidt hit a sacrifice fly with the bases loaded for another run. Left fielder Jeff Hourigan then broke an 0-17 slump with an RBI-single that gave Clemson a 5-2 lead.

After a Michael Johnson double, Schmidt singled him in for the Tiger run in the fifth inning. In the sixth inning, Greene tripled and came home on a Baker sacrifice fly to push the advantage to 7-2. Clemson added single runs in the seventh and the eighth to make the final margin 9-2.

Steven Jackson (6-1) earned the win for Clemson, pitching five innings, allowing only one earned run off of four hits while striking out four and walking six. The sophomore got himself into a jam in the fifth by walking the bases loaded, but got out of it unscathed with one of 11 groundball outs. Jackson threw 110 pitches and did not have a flyout. Thomas Boozer and Ryan Childs combined to pitch four scoreless innings to close out the victory. Culley Kline (3-7) got the loss for Wofford.

Triplett, batting as the leadoff batter for the first time this year, was one of five Tigers with two hits and the sophomore added two RBIs. Greene extended his hitting streak to 14 games with a single in the fourth inning. Scmidt and Slevin each had two stolen bases as Clemson had a season-high seven stolen bases.

Clemson will next host Elon Thursday night at 7:15 PM at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.

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