Tigers advance to Super Regional

AUBURN, Ala. – What some may have thought as mission impossible the night before, Clemson jumped all over Auburn with the first six runs of the 13-7 win Monday to take the Auburn Regional.

BOX SCORE: Clemson 13 Auburn 7

With three runs on the board in each of the first two innings and scoring in all but three the rest of the way, the Tigers of the ACC never trailed the Tigers from the SEC.

The momentum started in the first with Kyle Parker's three-run homer to right center and continued an inning later when Wilson Boyd doubled in one run and Jeff Shaus knocked in two with a single up the middle.

"Every run was important today," said Clemson coach Jack Leggett. "I knew every single run was going to come back to help us or haunt us before it was over. We needed that cushion because Auburn is a very dangerous team."

The win improves Clemson's record to 41-22 and drops Auburn to 43-21.

Clemson will now host Alabama in the Super Regional, which starts Saturday at 6 p.m.

"There are a lot of ups and downs with this job. Yesterday was about as low as you can be with that tough loss," Leggett said. "Today we bounced back and we're right back where we need to be."

The heartbreak of Sunday night's loss was quickly erased, even more so when Richie Shaffer stepped on first-base to make the final out on Monday.

"This is a big win for us tonight," said Wilson Boyd, whose two-run scoring double in the ninth put the icing on the cake.

"I think from top to bottom there was a total team effort. We had a number of pitchers in the game and they all did well."

Winning pitcher Alex Frederick (7-2) came on for three innings in relief, allowed six hits, two runs and struck out five.

"This team—they can swing the bats and we definitely saw that tonight. They put up a lot of hits," he said. "If you don't mix it up on these guys, it's easy to put it out in this park, too."

John Hinson was named the Auburn Regional MVP after Monday night's win. (AP)
Kevin Brady entered in the seventh and finished the ninth, preserving Clemson's win and bringing the Tigers within two more of the College World Series in Omaha, Neb.

"Kevin Brady did a great job of shutting the door in the last three innings…When Frederick ran out of gas, Kevin Brady was able to come in for us and wanted the ball," Leggett said. "I can't think of a better guy to have on the mound to get that last out than Kevin Brady."

Brady was the fourth pitcher to come on in relief for Clemson.

Starter Scott Firth didn't make it through the second.

Down 6-0 heading into the bottom of the second, Auburn responded with three runs. Firth, who was relieved after 1 1/3 innings by fellow freshman Dominic Leone, gave up the first two runs in the inning.

Leone walked in the third before sitting down Auburn sluggers Brian Feltcher and Hunter Morris, who finished the season with 22 and 23 homeruns, respectively.

Hinson added a solo homerun in the third to give Clemson a 7-3 lead.

In the third, Leone gave up RBI hits to Casey McElroy and Justin Bryant, brining the score to 7-5, heading into the fourth, when neither team managed to score a run.

Brad Miller singled up the middle in the fifth to score Shaus, who led-off with a double, giving Clemson an 8-5 lead.

With two outs and no one on, Auburn lead-off hitter Trent Mummey hit a solo homerun to bring Auburn within two, again, at 8-6.

Richie Shaffer's double down the third baseline in the seventh plated three more runs, giving Clemson an 11-6 lead.

"In that situation, I think any one of our guys would have come through," he said. "Our guys did a great job getting on before me. I just saw a pitch up and put a good swing on it."

McElroy responded in the bottom half of the inning with a lead-off homerun, but it would be Auburn's final run.

Timely defense by Shaffer, who initiated inning-ending double plays in the seventh and eighth, killed a pair of Auburn's rallies.

A would-be RBI double down the right field line by Brian Feltcher was ruled foul by first base umpire Randy Bruns. Fletcher eventually struck out looking before Morris lined into the double play.

Between innings, Auburn assistant coach John Foxhall was ejected for arguing the call.

"There is not a lot of room out there. So any ball down there will look a little deceiving," Parker said.

As for Shaffer's double plays, he's of the belief that it's better to be lucky than good.

"I just happened to be in the right place, at the right time," he said.

That'll do just fine for Leggett.

"Last night, it seemed everything went in their direction, but tonight we got the beaks and made some big plays," he said.

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