Tigers Pound Virginia, Greene Breaks Record

Khalil Greene went 3-3 and broke the ACC career hits record in the ninth inning as Clemson defeated Virginia 15-2 on Sunday afternoon before 1,022 fans at Chandler Stadium.

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
A Clemson 0 1 4 3 0 2 0 1 4 15 18 1
H Virginia 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 2 5 1

Jarrod Schmidt went 5-5, including three extra base hits and Clemson exploded for four home runs in the second and third innings on its way a season-high tying five home runs. The top-ranked Tigers improved to 42-9 (15-5 ACC) while dropping the Cavaliers to 24-25 (8-12 ACC).

Schmidt started things off in the second inning by blasting a 3-2 pitch over the scoreboard in left field to put the Tigers up 1-0. It was his eighth of the season and first since April 7 against NC State. Virginia answered in the bottom of the inning with consecutive two-out hits to tie the game at one.

Clemson came back with three home runs in the third inning, including two off of Virginia starter Joe Koshansky's first two pitches. Khalil Greene extended his hitting streak to 17 games with his 17th home run of the year deep to left center. Jeff Baker followed Greene with a high shot that just cleared the fence in left with some help from the wind. Baker's home run was his 17th of the year, tying him with Greene and Johnson for the team lead, and the 51st of his career. The barrage continued three batters later when Schmidt hit a home run over the scoreboard for the second time in two innings. His two-run homer gave Clemson a 5-1 lead.

The Tigers tacked on three more runs in the fourth. Koshansky balked in Russell Triplett, who doubled to lead off the inning, and Michael Johnson followed with an RBI-single through the right side. Johnson stole second and scored when David Slevin doubled off the wall in left for an 8-1 lead.

Greene moved into a tie atop the ACC's career hits standing with a single in the sixth inning. Schmidt continued his hot streak later in the inning with a two-strike single to left that scored Greene. Baker scored later in the inning off a wild pitch to push the margin to 10-1.

Virginia got one run back in the sixth inning with Robert Word's leadoff home run, but would get no closer. Clemson added a run in the eighth, Baker hit his second home run of the day in the ninth inning, a three-run shot, and Seth Miller hit an RBI-single to make the final margin 15-2.

Matt Henrie (10-2) earned the win with seven innings pitched, including a career-high eight strikeouts. He yielded two runs on five hits while walking two. Henrie struck out the side in the first inning and retired three batters in a row in the third after putting the first two batters of the inning on. Henrie joined Steve Rebas as Tiger pitchers with 10 wins in the same season for the first time since Kris Benson, Ken Vining and Billy Koch eached notched double digit victories. Koshansky (2-5) got the loss for Virginia.

Schmidt finished the day 5-5 with two home runs, a double and four RBIs and three runs scored and is 7-7 with seven RBIs in the series since starting 0-2 on Saturday. Greene went 3-3 with three runs scored and has reached base in 10 straight plate appearances with six straight hits in two games. Baker, Johnson and Triplett each had at least two hits for Clemson.

Clemson will go for the series sweep Monday at 1:00 PM when a couple of career milestones in reach. Head Coach Jack Leggett will be going for his 800th career victory as a head coach, Greene can break the ACC career doubles record with a two-bagger and Baker needs just one home run to tie Matthew LeCroy's Clemson career record of 53 home runs.

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