Clemson Claims Series With 5-4 Come-From-Behind Win

by - Correspondent -

CLEMSON - Marquez Smith made his first home run of the season a memorable one.

Smith, Clemson's third baseman, slugged a two-out, two-run blast to left field off George Mason reliever Jason Koziol Sunday afternoon to tie the game at 4-4 in the seventh inning, and the Tigers went on to defeat the Patriots 5-4. The victory allowed Clemson (2-1) to win the season-opening three-game series at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.

Smith, who had struggled at the plate through the first two games of the series, showed little signs of breaking out of his slump through most of Sunday. But with Brad Chalk on base with two out and the count 3-1, Smith turned on an inside fastball and smoked a line drive over the fence in straight-away left field to tie the game.

Clemson would score an unearned run in the eighth for the game-winner, but not before closer Daniel Moskos pitched out of major trouble in the top of the frame.

Moskos was called on to relieve Matt Vaughn after Uphouse tripled with one out in the eighth. But after walking the first batter he faced, Moskos struck out Brent Weiss and induced Mike Laird to ground out to first to end the threat.

The Tigers' winning run scored when Taylor Harbin hit a smash through Uphouse at third with two outs, and as the ball rolled away toward the outfield Doug Hogan scored the go-ahead run.

Moskos retired the Patriots (1-2) in order in the ninth to gain his first win of the season. Koziol (0-1) was the loser.

Clemson starter Ryan Hinson threw four innings, allowing just one run. For the series, Clemson's starters allowed just the one run over 15 innings.

Harbin drove in Clemson's first run with a ground out in the first inning, and the Tigers took a 2-1 lead fourth when Laird dropped Hogan's fly ball in right to allow a run to score.

George Mason rallied for three runs off Matt Vaughn to take a 4-2 lead heading into the bottom of the seventh.

Clemson returns to action on Wednesday, hosting High Point at 4 p.m.

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