Tigers pummel Gardner-Webb

Jeff Schaus, Kyle Parker, and Richie Shaffer all hit home runs in No. 7 Clemson's 13-2 win over Gardner-Webb at Doug Kinsgmore Stadium on Thursday.

The Tigers improved to 10-1, while the Bulldogs fell to 5-8.

Schaus' two-run homer in the first inning gave Clemson the lead for good, then Parker's three-run homer in the second inning gave the Tigers a 6-0 lead. Shaffer, who came off the bench, added a long two- run homer in the eighth inning. They were three of Clemson's 12 hits, while Tiger batters also walked 10 times and added one hit-by-pitch.

Schaus went 2-for-3 with a homer, double, two RBIs, three runs, and a walk, while Parker went 3-for-5 with a homer, three RBIs, two runs, and a walk for the Tigers, who outhit the Bulldogs 12-7.

Tiger starter Justin Sarratt (1-0) earned the win in 5.0 innings pitched. He allowed four hits and two runs (one earned), then Kevin Brady, Scott Firth, and Josh Thrailkill combined to pitch the final 4.0 innings without allowing a run.

Bulldog starter Conner Scarborough (0-2) suffered the loss, as he yielded nine hits, seven runs (six earned), and five walks with one strikeout in 4.0 innings pitched.

The Tigers grabbed the game's first lead in the first inning when Schaus hit a two-run homer down the right-field line, his third long ball of the season. Chris Epps, who reached on an error to lead off the frame, also scored.

In the second inning, Phil Pohl led off with a double down the left- field line and went to third on Will Lamb's groundout. After Epps walked, Mike Freeman hit a sacrifice fly to plate Pohl. Schaus followed with a two-out walk, then Parker blasted a 1-2 fastball up in the zone over the Thomas F. Chapman Grandstands down the left-field line for a three-run homer, his fifth long ball of the season. It was the first-ever home run to clear the new grandstands.

The Bulldogs dented the scoreboard in the third inning. Leadoff batter Matt Sapp reached on an error and scored on Daniel Merck's double off the top of the fence in left-center. After Merck moved to third on a wild pitch, he scored when Aaron Miller reached on another error.

In the fourth third inning, Schaus led off with a double down the right-field line and advanced to third on Parker's groundout. Wilson Boyd then drove home Schaus on a groundout to second.

The Tigers added to their lead in the sixth inning. Parker led off with a single through the left side and went to second on Boyd's walk. Both runners moved up a base on a balk, then two batters later, Brad Miller lofted a deep flyball to right-center that was dropped by Jake Watts. Both Parker and Boyd scored on the play as Miller sprinted to third base. Then the relay throw from Merck was errant, allowing Miller to score on the play.

In the seventh inning, Addison Johnson, Parker, and Boyd all walked, then Johnson scored on a wild pitch with two outs to give Clemson an 11-2 lead.

The Tigers upped their lead to 11 runs in the eighth inning when Shaffer hit a towering opposite-field, two-run homer to right-center, his second long ball of the season. Miller scored ahead of Shaffer after leading off the inning with a single up the middle.

Merck paced the Bulldogs by going 3-for-3 with an RBI, run, and walk.

Clemson will open ACC play when it hosts N.C. State at Doug Kingsmore Stadium in a three-game series starting Friday at 4:00 PM.

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