D'Lo Lifts Tigers To Win

CLEMSON – One of the byproducts of not having the ability to score bunches of runs is that the Clemson baseball team is used to playing in tight games. And as the season has progressed, the Tigers have grown accustomed to having to produce runs late, where other teams might not be.

That was never more evident than last week against Georgia Tech, and again Friday night against Boston College as first baseman Andy D'Alessio cranked a solo home run in the bottom of the eighth inning to lift No. 18 Clemson to the 4-3 victory at a wet Doug Kingsmore Stadium.

D'Alessio took the first pitch he saw, which was a hanging curveball by pitcher Kevin Boggan, and smacked it over the wall in left-centerfield and hit the scoreboard for his ninth blast of the season.

"It was one of the few times he left a pitch up in the zone," the first baseman said. "(The tight games) are definitely coming back to help us. We're definitely getting more acclimated to tight ballgames."

The Tigers (30-15, 14-8 ACC) are now 4-1 in their last five one-run games.

"We've been in a lot of tough games," Clemson coach Jack Leggett said. "We've had to scrap for everything we've got."

Oddly enough, the home run came within an eyelash of never even happening.

The Eagles (20-24-1, 11-14 ACC) incorporated a hard shift where the entire infield moves almost to the right side of the diamond like most professional teams do to San Francisco Giants star Barry Bonds. Even the third baseman stands where the shortstop usually does.

And because of the tie ballgame at 3-3, D'Alessio strongly considered trying to take advantage of the situation.

"I thought about dropping a bunt down because I knew if I could get it past the pitcher that I'd get to first," he said. "I just wanted to get on base to get something started."

Leggett said D'Alessio always has the option to drop a bunt down.

"It's always a possibility," Leggett said. "I'm glad he didn't, though."

Clemson starting pitcher Daniel Moskos pitched a masterful game, allowing just five hits over seven and a third innings. But he gave up two runs in the eighth, which prevented him from getting the win.

For one of the few times this season, Moskos was given some runs to work with, and for one of the few times, he couldn't do anything with it.

"It was nice to see something besides zeros on the scoreboard," Moskos said. "That was a bonus."

Moskos was given that lead partly because of freshman Addison Johnson, who had two hits and two RBIs. He, too, feels like the team is used to playing in tight games.

"We're getting more clutch hits in key situations," he said.

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