Coming off rare 7-0 week, Tigers set their sights on Seminoles

Thursday, Friday, Saturday series at Tallahassee may decide ACC Atlantic Division crown

Clemson's Maleeke Gibson beats the throw to Georgia Southern's Tyler Avera to steal second base in the sixth inning at Doug Kingsmore Stadium on Sunday. Gibson added a pair of hits, runs and RBI's to the stolen base.

Photo by Sefton Ipock

Clemson's Maleeke Gibson beats the throw to Georgia Southern's Tyler Avera to steal second base in the sixth inning at Doug Kingsmore Stadium on Sunday. Gibson added a pair of hits, runs and RBI's to the stolen base.

It was a good week for the Clemson baseball team.

Perfect, in fact.

The Tigers went 7-0 over a seven-day stretch last week, pushed their record to 37-15, and their RPI to No. 11.

This week they'll put the finishing touch on their regular season, first with a home game on Tuesday against USC Upstate and then with a three-game series at Florida State.

The Tigers and Seminoles will play on Thursday at 6 p.m., Friday at 8 p.m., and Saturday at 3 p.m. The Friday and Saturday games will be televised nationally by ESPNU.

Going into Monday night's series finale between FSU and N.C. State, the Tigers (17-10) stand a half game behind Florida State (17-9) and percentage points behind N.C. State (16-9) in the ACC Atlantic Division standings. North Carolina leads the overall ACC standings with a 20-5 mark, while the Tigers are in fifth place in the overall ACC standings.

Last Week’s Game Notes

Clemson, ranked as high as No. 15 in the nation, went 7-0 in seven games this past week. It marked the first time since 1996 that Clemson played and won seven games in a seven-day stretch. Clemson finished the Maryland series on Monday with a doubleheader sweep at home, then the Tigers swept Furman in a doubleheader at Fluor Field in Greenville, SC on Wednesday. Then over the weekend, Clemson swept Georgia Southern in a three-game series at home.

On the week, the Tigers outscored the opposition 63-18 and batted .349 with a .432 slugging percentage and .460 on-base percentage. They also totaled 10 doubles, three triples, one homer, 44 walks and eight hit-by-pitches against only 36 strikeouts, and 20 stolen bases. Clemson had a .972 fielding percentage.

Shane Kennedy led Clemson at the plate by going 12-for-24 (.500) with a triple, homer, six RBIs, 10 runs, four walks, and five steals. Steve Wilkerson went 11-for-24 (.458) with three doubles, one triple, seven RBIs, nine runs, 10 walks, a .618 on-base percentage, and one steal. Jon McGibbon went 10-for-22 (.455) with one double, nine RBIs, seven runs, four walks, and one steal, while Thomas Brittle went 8-for-19 (.421) with one double, seven RBIs, six runs, and three steals.

The Tiger pitching staff had a 1.57 ERA and .220 opponents’ batting average on the week. The staff also allowed 50 hits and 24 walks with 48 strikeouts in 63.0 innings pitched.

In two starts, Matthew Crownover earned two wins. In 13.0 innings pitched, the freshman lefthander allowed just seven hits, no runs, and four walks with 10 strikeouts. Fellow freshman lefty Zack Erwin also recorded two wins in two starts.

2013 Season Notes

Clemson has a 37-15 overall record and 17-10 ACC mark on the season. Thanks to its current seven-game winning streak, Clemson has won 21 of its last 25 games after starting the season 16-11.

The Tigers, who are averaging 5.7 runs per game, are hitting .283 with a .365 slugging percentage and .366 on-base percentage thanks to 224 walks and 24 hit-by-pitches. The team has totaled 73 doubles, 14 triples, 15 homers, and 91 stolen bases.

Shane Kennedy leads the team in batting average (.326), runs (40), triples (4), walks (32), and on-base percentage (.419) along with totaling four homers, 30 RBIs, and 16 steals. Garrett Boulware is hitting .314 with seven homers and 43 RBIs, while Steve Wilkerson is hitting .307 with 15 doubles and nine steals.

The pitching staff has a 2.88 ERA and .257 opponents’ batting average in 472.0 innings pitched this season. It has allowed 461 hits and 165 walks with 340 strikeouts, good for a 2.06 strikeout-to-walk ratio.

Freshman lefthander Matthew Crownover leads the staff with a 7-1 record and 1.90 ERA in 61.2 innings pitched over 13 appearances (12 starts). Sophomore righty Daniel Gossett is 8-3 with a 2.36 ERA and 80 strikeouts in 80.0 innings pitched. Scott Firth has a 2.48 ERA and four saves, while Matt Campbell has a team-high seven saves.

Around The ACC

Georgia Tech rallied from a five run deficit to force extra innings and then edged No. 1 North Carolina 9-8 on Sunday for a 2-1 series victory over the Tar Heels. Meanwhile, Virginia swept a three-game series over Duke, winning the Sunday game 14-6.

Wake Forest won its second in three games over Miami, Florida State beat N.C. State 12-3, and Virginia Tech won a pair of 7-6 games on Marist.

This weekend's final conference match-ups include Virginia (42-8, 20-7) at North Carolina (45-6, 20-5); Wake Forest (28-24, 9-18) at Virginia Tech (33-19, 13-14); N.C. State (39-12, 16-9) at Duke (25-26, 9-18); Georgia Tech (32-20, 14-13) at Miami (33-20, 12-15); Boston College (11-37, 3-23) at Maryland (28-24, 9-18); and Clemson (37-15, 17-10) at FSU (41-10, 17-9).

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