Another doubleheader sweep in order for Tigers against Furman

Jay Baum slides into third after hitting an RBI triple against Furman in the eighth inning in the second game of a doubleheader at Fluor Field in Greenville.

Photo by Mark Crammer

Jay Baum slides into third after hitting an RBI triple against Furman in the eighth inning in the second game of a doubleheader at Fluor Field in Greenville.

GREENVILLE – Clemson coach Jack Leggett recently lamented the multiple postponed games in this rainy spring, joking that next year’s schedule will have all ‘TBAs’ for times.

He will certainly take the reshuffled results though.

The Tigers improved to 9-1 in doubleheaders this season with 14-2 (game one) and 12-2 (game two) wins at Fluor Field Wednesday, adding to a week where the Tigers swept Maryland in a similar fashion Monday.

They have now won 7-of-9 games and six of their last seven series.

“We just happened to play really well today,” Leggett said. “We pitched really well. We played well defensively for the most part, and when we didn’t - we overcame it.

“We swung the bats, were really good with our bunt game, were really good with our baserunning...We saw some things we could take advantage of and we did.”

Tigers sweep Furman DH

Clemson moves to 9-1 in DHs

Clemson third baseman Shane Kennedy set the tone early in game two by hammering a solo shot over Fluor Field’s Green Monster.

The juco signee had a monster day, reaching base 7-of-8 plate appearances, scoring four runs and stealing four bases.

The Tigers manufactured an early 3-0 lead without an RBI, by double play and fielding error, in the third inning.

For one time Wednesday, Furman had an answer – second baseman Jordan Simpson lacing a two-run single to right field in the fourth frame.

Furman’s second lefty starter of the day, senior Nate Smith, was tagged with the hard-luck loss (4-4) allowing one run in two innings.

For a second time, the SoCon-level bullpen wasn’t up to the task of holding down the Tigers, as a four-run sixth, all by singles, effectively put away the game.

All Tigers sophomore reliever Kyle Schnell needed was one pitch to become eligible for the win after five frames (2-0), and he went on to throw 2 1/3 hitless and scoreless innings.

The third time was indeed the charm for Clemson (34-15) and Furman (26-22) to finally meet on the diamond in the game one Tigers’ victory.

A game postponed from April 17 already – rain wreaked havoc again Tuesday night in Clemson to make it a day-night twinbill at Fluor Field Wednesday.

Kennedy reached on bunt single and center fielder Thomas Brittle scored him on one with two outs to lead off the Tiger effort in the second inning.

Kennedy knocked in a RBI of his own in the third inning, and a pair of two-out singles by designated hitter Maleeke Gibson and second baseman Steve Wilkerson did more damage in the fourth frame.

Meanwhile, Clemson freshman righty Brody Koerner posted a career-day for his first career win (1-1).

The Concord, N.C. native was effectively wild, walking six but striking out a season-high seven batters – allowing a single hit in six innings.

Furman lefty Ryan Dittmar, on two early scores, took the loss (2-2), but the Tiger bats torched the Furman bullpen – led by a six-run seventh (tied for a season-high) – for 12 scores in 5 1/3 innings.

The 14 runs scored were a season-high for Clemson.

Wilkerson went 3-for-4, driving in four runs, and added another in the nightcap. Gibson knocked in three RBIs on a pair of hits, and also added a run driven in later.

Clemson first baseman Jon McGibbon continued his hot streak, with RBIs in each game – 13 in his last nine games.

Leggett doesn’t want to jinx it though.

“Let’s not about talk him,” he said. “Let him keep playing. He’s doing a really good job at first base...We really need him down the stretch so hopefully he keeps it up.”

The Tigers improved their record to 14-3 at Fluor Field all-time, after a 6-3 win over South Carolina earlier this season.

Over the two games, the teams combined for 12 stolen bases.

Next up, Clemson hosts Georgia Southern for a three-game set this weekend at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.

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