Tigers Improve to 9-3

The 18th ranked Clemson baseball team improved to 9-3 with a 7-5 victory over the Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles Tuesday afternoon at Doug Kingsmore Stadium. Tennessee Tech fell to 5-6.

Steven Jackson improved his record to 1-1 in 6.0 innings of work. The junior right-hander from Summerville, SC allowed one run on five hits and threw 14 groundball outs compared to just two fly outs. Junior right-hander Collins Hughes suffered the loss in his first outing as a Golden Eagle. Paul Harrelson earned his first save of the season by inducing a game-ending double play with the tying run on first base.

Tennessee Tech claimed an early 1-0 lead when Carlos Martin scored in a second inning two-out rally. Scott Terry singled up the middle to drive in Martin for the early Golden Eagle lead.

After Clemson battled out of a bases-loaded jam in the top of the sixth, the Tigers scored five runs in the bottom of the inning. Zane Green led off with double to the left field gap. Brad McCann followed with an RBI single through the left side plating Green. McCann advanced to second on the throw to the plate and moved to third base on a throwing error by catcher Britt Clubb. Freshman first baseman Kris Harvey singled home McCann on another hit through the left side.

After Kyle Frank walked, Russell Triplett extended his hitting streak to 10 games when he beat out a bunt. Then with the bases loaded and one out, Steve Pyzik laid down a successful suicide squeeze to up Clemson's lead to three to one. Pinch-hitter Jeff Hourigan added two more insurance runs when he lined an 0-2 curveball to left-center, scoring Frank and Triplett. Hourigan was 1-for-14 on the season before his clutch hit.

The Golden Eagles cut the lead to 5-4 in the top of the seventh thanks to four infield singles and a double. Clubb and Justin Mundt led off the frame with infield singles and advanced on a Ben Shannon sacrifice bunt. Cole Helms followed with another infield single scoring Clubb and Mundt. Helms advanced to second on a wild pitch by Aaron Trolia, to third on a single by Casey Benjamin, and scored on a double down the left field line by Ryan Hay. Benjamin, representing the tying run, was thrown out at the plate on a relay through from Triplett to Pyzik. It was one of 12 assists in the game for Triplett.

The Tigers added two unearned runs in their half of the seventh when Ryan Hub singled home Triplett and Harvey.

Tennessee Tech threatened in the ninth when Benjamin drew a one-out walk and advanced to second on Hay's third hit of the game. Martin followed with a single down the right-field line, plating Benjamin. But Harrelson coaxed Bilodeau to ground into a game-ending double play.

Clemson and Tennessee Tech will conclude the two-game series Wednesday at Doug Kingsmore Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 4:00 PM.

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