DICK HOWSER STADIUM
700 N. Woodward
Tallahassee, FL 32304
500 Chapel Drive
Tallahassee, FL 32304
|FLORIDA STATE UNIVERSITY|
With a 12-3 win over the #1 Clemson Tigers on Saturday night, #2 Florida State assured itself of a first-ever series-win at Clemson. FSU had never won more than one game of a series at Doug Kingsmore stadium before tonight's contest.
Blair Varnes (7-3) pitched brilliantly, holding the Tigers to only two earned runs on three hits while striking out seven batters in 7.2 innings. Kevin Lynch finished the final 1.2 innings for FSU, getting the final four outs out of the ballgame.
Just like in Friday's game, Clemson took a 1-0 lead when Jeff Baker hit his twenty-first homerun of the season in the second inning. The Seminoles got it right back in the next frame when Richie Smith singled to right, stole second, moved to third on a groundout by Bryan Zech, and scored on another groundout, by Mike Futrell.
The Tigers retook the lead in the bottom of the third inning when David Slevin doubled to right-center and eventually scored on an error by Jerrod Brown. FSU battled back in the top of the fourth to take the lead when Tony McQuade singled to right and moved to second on a single by Ryan Barthelemy. A slow roller back to the mound by Blair McCaleb moved both runners up before a single from Tony Richie scored McQuade that knotted the game at 2-2. A single by to right by Smith plated Barthelemy and gave the Noles a one-run lead.
Florida State removed much of the mystery from the game in the fifth inning with a seven-run explosion. Zech started things off when he reached on a fielding error by Slevin, advanced to second on a groundout, and scored on a Stephen Drew single to right. Drew then stole second and moved to third on the throw by the catcher that went into centerfield. McQuade then drew a walk before Barthelemy grounded out to score Drew. McQuade came in when McCaleb singled to right and chased Clemson starter Matt Henrie for Jeff Hourigan. Brown kept up the assault with a single before Richie laced a double down the left-field line that scored McCaleb. Smith then singled in both Richie and Brown and took second on the throw before Bryan Zech doubled to right to score him.
FSU added another run in the sixth when McQuade led off with a triple and scored on a Barthelemy single to right to the Seminoles an 11-2 lead.
The Tigers picked up their final run of the game in the bottom of the eighth when Khalil Greene walked and eventually scored on a groundout by Jarrod Schmidt.. FSU got that run right back in the top of the ninth when Richie blasted his ninth homerun of the season, and second in two games that made it 12-3.
Florida State improved to 50-12 on the season and 17-6 in the ACC which gives them a brief hold of first place in conference play. Clemson fell to 44-11 and 16-7 in the ACC. .The Noles will go for an unprecedented sweep on Sunday with Marc LaMacchia (8-1 3.44 ERA) on the mound vs Tyler Lumsden (2-0 4.50 ERA) for Clemson. If the Seminoles win on Sunday, they will win the regular season title. In order to stay out of fourth place, one of three things must happen -1) FSU must beat Clemson, 2) Georgia Tech must complete the sweep over North Carolina, or 3) Duke must pull another upset over Wake Forest like they did on Saturday.
Section B Online Player of the Game: Blair Varnes (7.2 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 7 K)