Great players are often remembered by clutch performances that won games for their team. Kris Harvey has now twice delivered memorable performances this season. Harvey's three run blast that knocked off South Carolina in Columbia will be talked about for some time to come now. His grand slam Tuesday night may not hold the memories, but it does not lack in importance.
Clemson was down 2-1 to Virginia Tech. In the eighth inning, Brad Chalk got a one out single after Head Coach Jack Leggett was questionably ejected from the game. Taylor Harbin then hit his 21st double of the season down the third base line. Chalk advanced from first to third on the double. Tyler Colvin was intentionally walked to load the bases. Granted, Kris Harvey had yet to have a good at bat in the series, but he is still the home run leader in the ACC. Harvey did what a team leader is supposed to do, he rifled the first pitch over left center for a grand slam that put the Tigers up 5-2.
Gene Pierce hit a towering home run in the top of the ninth to close out the scoring at 6-2. All six runs came on long balls. Travis Storrer hit his second home run of the series in the second inning to put the Tigers up 1-0.
It was a very critical came for the Tigers. They are now tied with FSU for fourth place, but the Seminoles hold the tiebreaker after taking two of three from the Tigers earlier this year. Clemson had lost its last two ACC series to Virginia Tech and could ill-afford to lose its third straight much less lose a series to one of the lower tier ACC teams. If Harvey does not convert, the Tigers may have sealed their fate with a date out west for regionals.
Senior righthander Jeff Hahn earned the victory in relief of Robert Rohrbaugh. Hahn pitched five scoreless innings for Tigers and was only challenged in one inning. Hahn walked two batters in the eighth, but he battled his was out of the inning without yielding a run. Rohrbaugh had a quality start, but was lifted after giving up solo home run to Sheldon Adams that put the Hokies up 2-1.
The Tigers return to the diamond Friday at 3 pm at Wake Forest. This is the last road series of the year for the Tigers. After three games in Winston Salem, the Tigers close out the season with a four game home stretch (1-College of Charleston, 3-Miami).