Baseball to Face UVA in ACC Tournament


by - Correspondent -
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FORT MILL — To Jack Leggett's way of thinking, having the host sites for the
NCAA Regionals named the same week of the Atlantic Coast Conference
tournament was no distraction for his Clemson Tigers.


On the contrary. It seemed to serve as a motivation.


"We felt like we played well enough down the stretch that the announcement
was more or less a formality," Leggett said. "What it does now is give us a
chance to play our way into hosting a Super Regional, depending on how we do
in the ACC tournament and if we're lucky enough to get through the Regional."


Leggett isn't over-confident, by any stretch of the imagination. Instead, he
appears to be cautiously optimistic about his team's chances in the ACC
Tournament, which begins at 5 p.m. today when the second-seeded Tigers
(37-18, 17-7) face No. 7 Virginia (24-29, 9-15) at Knights Stadium in Fort
Mill.


Clemson closed the regular season with a five-game winning streak, matching
its longest of the season. The finish was a far cry from his team's play just
over a month ago, when a three-game sweep at the hands of No. 1 seed Florida
State punctuated a five-game losing streak.


Leggett wondered about his team's makeup then. Now, those questions are fewer
and far between.


"In the middle of the year I didn't have much of a feel for this team," he
said. "We're playing much better now, though. Our pitching is coming along
and our defense is getting better. We have to continue to get better on the
offensive side. We need to be more aggressive and we have to do well in the
bunting game.


It's been a satisfying year, though a little rough in some ways. We played
without (injured centerfielder) Patrick Boyd all year, and have had some
adversity along the way. But we've played pretty well down the stretch. We
only lost one (ACC) series all year."


Leggett will send Matt Henrie (5-2, 2.68 ERA) to the mound tonight against
the Cavaliers, deciding against pitching staff ace Steve Reba on three days
rest.


The winner of the Clemson-Virginia game will play the Wake Forest-North
Carolina winner at 8 p.m. Thursday. The two losers play at 1:30 that
afternoon.


NOTES: This is the fourth consecutive year Clemson has opened the ACC
Tournament against the team it faced to close the regular season...Reba
finished the regular season with a record of 10-3 and a 2.22 ERA...Georgia
Tech gets a boost entering the tournament. All-American Mark Teixeira, who
missed most of the season with an injury, is back in the Yellow Jackets
lineup. Teixeira is hitting .513 in 10 games this season.


Clemson at ACC Tournament

May 16-20, 2001

Charlotte Knight's Stadium, Fort Mill, SC

#13 Clemson (37-18, 17-7 ACC) vs. Virginia (24-29, 9-15 ACC)

Wednesday, May 16, 5:00 PM

Probable Starting Rotation

Game 1: Matt Henrie (RHP; 5-2, 2.98 ERA)

Game 2: Steve Reba (RHP; 10-3, 2.22 ERA)

Game 3: Jarrod Schmidt (RHP; 6-3, 4.07 ERA)



Clemson vs. Virginia

The Tigers swept Virginia this past weekend at Doug Kingsmore Stadium
in Clemson to extend their series lead to 93-25. Clemson has now won
33 of the last 34 games against the Cavaliers in Clemson and improved
to 22-5 against Virginia under head coach Jack Leggett.


The two teams met twice in the ACC Tournament a year ago, with
Clemson taking both games. The Tigers won 9-7 in the first round game
and then won 12-5 to advance to the championship game vs. Georgia
Tech. Prior to last year's meetings in Fort Mill, the two teams had
not faced one another in the ACC Tournament since the Cavaliers won
4-2 in Durham in 1996 on their way to the ACC Championship. The
Tigers are 10-3 against the Cavaliers in the ACC Tournament.



Clemson vs. UVA in ACC Tourney

Year CU Result Site

1973 W, 3-1 Chapel Hill, NC

1974 L, 2-3 Raleigh, NC

W, 9-6 Raleigh, NC

1982 L, 4-6 Chapel Hill, NC

1983 W, 12-5 Chapel Hill, NC

1984 W, 7-6 Durham, NC

1985 W, 10-8 Atlanta, GA

1990 W, 7-3 Greenville, SC

1991 W, 7-4 Greenville, SC

1992 W, 3-2 Greenville, SC

1996 L, 2-4 Durham, NC

2000 W, 9-5 Fort Mill, SC

W, 12-5 Fort Mill, SC



Deja Vu

Clemson will open the ACC Tournament with the same opponent it closed
out the regular season against for the fourth straight season. The
Tigers swept Virginia in the three-game series this past weekend at
Doug Kingsmore Stadium and will now play them in the first round of
the tournament. The same scenario played out last year after the
Tigers took two of three games vs. the Cavaliers in Charlottesville
and then played them in the first round. Clemson lost two of three
games at N.C. State in 1999 and then beat the Wolfpack 7-6 in the
first round of the tournament. In 1998, Clemson won two of three
games at North Carolina and then lost 4-1 to the Tar Heels in the
first round of the ACC Tournament.



Clemson in the ACC Tournament

Clemson has 83 wins in its 124 ACC Tournament games and has appeared
in the championship game a league best 19 times. That is more than
double any other team. North Carolina and N.C. State are tied for the
second most appearances in the final game, having advanced to the
last game eight times each. Clemson has been in the championship game
three of the last four years and eight of the last 10 years. The
Tigers, which have won at least two games every year but 1998, have
won the ACC Tournament title eight times, the most recent when
Clemson won back-to-back titles in 1993 and 1994, the first season
under head coach Jack Leggett. Both times the tournament was held in
Greenville, SC. The Tigers also have 20 ACC regular-season
championships, the last coming in 1995.



Clemson's ACC Tournament Titles

Year Result Location

1976 def. Maryland, 3-2 Clemson, SC

1978 def. Wake Forest, 22-9 Clemson, SC

1978 def. Wake Forest, 7-2 Clemson, SC

1980 def. N. Carolina, 12-3 Raleigh, NC

1981 def. N. Carolina, 7-5 Chapel Hill, NC

1989 def. N. Carolina, 12-4 Greenville, SC

1991 def. Georgia Tech, 24-8 Greenville, SC

1993 def. N.C. State, 11-7 Greenville, SC

1994 def. Florida State, 4-1 Greenville, SC



Tigers Against the Field

Clemson is 83-41 (.669) all-time in the ACC Tournament and boasts a
.500 record or better against all eight teams. Clemson has met both
North Carolina and N.C. State 22 times in the history of the
tournament that started in 1973 in Chapel Hill, NC. The Tigers are
13-9 against both the Tar Heels and Wolfpack. The only team to keep
Clemson from a winning record in the ACC tournament is Florida State.
The two schools which are the this year's top two seeds are 7-7 in 14
previous meetings.



Clemson vs. ACC in Tourney

Duke 8-2 .800

Florida State 7-7 .500

Georgia Tech 10-7 .588

Maryland 12-0 1.000

North Carolina 13-9 .591

N.C. State 13-9 .591

Virginia 10-3 .769

Wake Forest 10-4 .714

TOTALS 83-41 (.669)



Clemson to Serve as Regional Host for Second Straight Year
Clemson has been selected to serve as host to one of 16 regional
sites for the 2001 NCAA Baseball Championship on May 25-27 the NCAA
announced Monday afternoon.


The Tigers, 37-18 overall and 17-7 in the ACC, will host for the
second consecutive year after hosting both the regional and Super
Regional rounds last year. Clemson hosted Middle Tennessee, Illinois
and Old Dominion in a four-team regional and advanced after defeating
Illinois once and Middle Tennessee State twice. The Tigers hosted
Mississippi State the following weekend in the Super Regional and
earned a trip to the College World Series by defeating the Bulldogs
11-4 and 9-4 in the best-of-three series.


Clemson has also played host to the NCAA Tournament in 1980, 1981,
1994, 1995, 1996, 1998 and 2000 and has advanced to the College World
Series four of those seven times. Monday's selection as a host
assures that Clemson will make its 15th straight NCAA tournament
appearance and its 27th appearance overall. However, seeding for the
tournament will not be determined until May 21, when the entire field
is announced live at 3:00 PM on ESPN. The Tigers are 19-6 in NCAA
Tournament games played at Clemson.


This is the third year of the 64-team format for the NCAA tournament
and the winner will advance to the Super Regional at a site to be
determined following the first-round games. The Tigers are 70-55
all-time in NCAA Tournament games and have made nine appearances in
the College World Series.


2001 Regional Sites

Host Location Record

Cal State-Fullerton Fullerton, CA 39-14

CLEMSON Clemson, SC 37-18

East Carolina Wilson, NC 44-11

Florida State Tallahassee, FL 40-15

Georgia Athens, GA 40-16

Louisiana State Baton Rouge, LA 37-18-1

Miami (FL) Coral Gables, FL 41-12

Nebraska Lincoln, NE 41-14

Notre Dame South Bend, IN 45-9

Ohio State Columbus, OH 41-14

Rice Houston, TX 40-17

South Carolina Columbia, SC 41-15

Southern California Los Angeles, CA 35-16

Stanford Palo Alto, CA 39-14

Tennessee Knoxville, TN 41-15

Tulane New Orleans, LA 45-9



All-Session Tickets Now on Sale

Reserved tickets for this year's tournament are available at the
Clemson Athletic Ticket Office or by calling 1-800-CLEMSON. An
all-session pass costs $50 and is good for all six or seven games
that will be played at Doug Kingsmore Stadium. The games will be
played on Friday at 2:00 PM and 7:00 PM; on Saturday at 11:00 AM,
3:00 PM and 7:00 PM; and on Sunday at 2:00 PM and 7:00 PM (if
necessary).



Clemson Sweeps Virginia

The Tigers needed to win two games to clinch the second seed at this
week's ACC Tournament, but instead they took all three games and
claimed second place outright. Had Clemson won just two games it
would have tied Wake Forest for second place in the standings, but by
virtue of Clemson's 2-1 series win over the Demon Deacons in late
March, the Tigers held the tie-breaker.


Steve Reba allowed just one earned run in seven innings and Khalil
Greene had four hits and four runs batted in, leading Clemson to an
8-1 college victory over Virginia in the first game of a Saturday
afternoon doubleheader. Reba improved to 10-3 with the victory,
becoming the first ACC pitcher to reach the 10-win mark this year. He
allowed just six hits in seven innings, struck out seven and did not
walk a batter. Greene had four hits, including hits ninth home run of
the season as he boosted his batting average over .300 for the
season. The Clemson shortstop also had three singles. Leadoff hitter
Ryan Riley had three hits and an RBI, while number-nine hitter, Kyle
Frank, had two hits and drove in a run.


In the second game Saturday, Michael Johnson belted out five hits,
including two home runs to lead Clemson to a 17-1 victory over
Virginia. Greene knocked in five runs in the contest, giving him nine
RBIs for the day. Greene had four hits and four RBIs in the first
game. He had just one hit in the second game, but he had a three-run
homer, a sacrifice fly and an RBI ground out.


Clemson needed ninth-inning heroics on Sunday to avoid the second
extra inning contest of the week. Zane Green's two-out, pinch hit
single in the bottom of the ninth inning capped a frantic finish as
Clemson defeated Virginia 5-4. Clemson led 4-0 heading into the top
of the ninth when Virginia came roaring back. The Cavaliers scored a
run and loaded the bases with four straight singles off reliever Josh
Cram to start the inning. David Stone then struck out but another run
scored when Cram hit Chris Sweet with a pitch. After a flyout by
Hunter Wyant, Jon Benick hit a two-run single to left field that tied
the game at four. The inning ended one batter later when Mark
Rueffert popped up to second base.


Michael Johnson led off the bottom of the inning with a walk and
moved to second base on Jarrod Schmidt's sacrifice bunt. Catcher Jon
Smith followed with a strikeout to set up the dramatic ending. Green
hit a two-strike, two-out line drive single to center field that
scored Johnson from second base and allowed the Tigers to walk off
with a victory.


Despite giving up the four runs in the ninth inning on Sunday, Cram
got the win and moved to 4-1 on the year. Schmidt led the Tiger
offense with two hits, an RBI and a run scored. Stone went 1-3 with
two runs scored. Virginia reliever Chris Marinak (2-1) got the loss
for Virginia.


Tigers Riding Hot Streak

Since April 11, when Clemson snapped a five-game losing streak by
scoring five runs in the bottom of the ninth inning and adding a run
in the 11th to beat Coastal Carolina, the Tigers have won 16 of their
last 21 games (.762). The five-game losing streak tied the longest
for the Tigers under head coach Jack Leggett and dropped the Tigers
record to 21-13. Clemson had climbed to a No. 8 ranking, but the
streak dropped the Tigers to No. 17. Clemson is currently enjoying a
five-game win streak, equaling the longest streak of the season.
Clemson also won five consecutive games on two other occasions.
Before Clemson's comeback against Coastal Carolina, the Tiger
pitching staff had a team ERA of 4.60. Since that pivotal game the
Clemson staff has a 2.95 ERA and has lowered the season ERA to 3.96.
Six pitchers on the postseason roster have less than a 3.00 ERA since
that time whereas only two had an ERA of less than 3.00 before April
11. Clemson's offense has actually cooled off somewhat since the
turning point. Clemson had a .314 team batting average through the
five-game losing streak, but during the last 21 games, it is .289. On
the year, the Tigers sport a .305 team batting average which is third
best in the ACC behind Georgia Tech (.349) and Wake Forest (.331).



Clemson Wins Seven of Eight Conference Series

The Tigers three-game sweep of Virginia was the third sweep in ACC
play this season. Clemson also won all three games at Maryland and
swept Duke in three meetings at Doug Kingsmore Stadium. The series
win over the Cavaliers was the Tigers' seventh ACC series victory
this year. Florida State swept the Clemson series in Tallahassee for
the only series loss for the Tigers this year. The last time the
Tigers won seven of the eight ACC series was in 1995. Clemson was
swept by Florida State that season.


Baker Belts No. 21

Sophomore Jeff Baker hit his 21st home run of the 2001 season Sunday
in the 5-4 victory over Virginia. The two-run shot in the sixth
inning moved the sophomore from Woodbridge, VA into a third place tie
with Jim McCollom who hit 21 in 1985. Baker is not just three home
runs away from the school record (24) shared by Eric Macrina (1991)
and Matthew LeCroy (1997). Baker is leading the ACC by four home
runs. Virginia's Jon Benick and Florida State's John-Ford Griffin
each have 17.



Top Five Home Run Seasons

Player Year GP HR

Eric Macrina 1991 69 24

Matthew LeCroy 1997 64 24

Jim McCollom 1985 64 21

Jeff Baker 2001 55 21

Keith Williams 1993 65 19



Baker Sets Two-Year Home Run Standard

Third baseman Jeff Baker hit two home runs in the N.C. State series
to record the most home runs ever hit by a Tiger in his freshman and
sophomore seasons. The sophomore has added two since then and now has
32 career home runs - 21 this season to go with 11 last season. That
is three more than Matthew LeCroy who is tied for the most career
home runs. LeCroy hit 29 home runs by the end of his sophomore season
in Clemson (1996).


Most Home Runs in First Two Seasons

Player Fr./So. Career Years

Jeff Baker 32 32 2000-01

Matthew LeCroy 29 53 1995-97

Patrick Boyd 25 28 1998-01

Kurt Bultmann 21 43 1996-99

Joe DeBerry 20 35 1989-91

Shane Monahan 20 32 1993-95

Jim McCollom 20 52 1982-85

Jarrod Schmidt 20 20 2000-01

Mike Couture 19 32 1987-90

Keith Williams 16 35 1991-93

Michael Johnson 16 16 2000-01

Ray Williams 14 34 1984-87

Jim Crowley 12 43 1988-91



The Long Ball

Clemson hit six home runs in the Virginia series and now has 73 home
runs as a team this season. The Tigers need to hit only one more home
runs this season to double last year's output as they hit only 37
home runs a year ago. Jeff Baker led Clemson last year with 11.
Fifteen of the 37 homers in 2000 came at Doug Kingsmore Stadium,
while this year Clemson has more than tripled the total having hit 47
out of Kingsmore Stadium.


Baker's total of 21 ranks sixth in the nation entering the week, just
five behind John Vanbenschoten of Kent State, who has 26 homers to
lead Division I. Jarrod Schmidt has hit 15 home runs to rank fourth
behind Baker, Benick and Griffin in the ACC, while Michael Johnson is
tied for fifth with 13.


Khalil Greene had two home runs in the Saturday doubleheader with
Virginia for his ninth and 10th homers of the season. He joins Baker,
Schmidt and Johnson with 10 home runs or more this season, the
quartet has combined for 59 home runs (80.8 percent of the home runs
hit by the Tigers this year). Only Baker had a double-figure total in
2000 with his 11 round-trippers. Clemson last had four players with
10 or more home runs in 1997 when five players had double digit
totals. Matthew LeCroy led the Tigers with a school best 24, followed
by Kurt Bultmann (16), Gary Burnham (15), Jason Embler (14) and Matt
Padgett (13). Those five players accounted for 82 of Clemson's 95
(86.3 percent) homers that season.



Multiple Home Run Games

The two home runs hit by Michael Johnson in Saturday's 17-1 win over
Virginia marked the 10th time this season that a Tigerhit two home
runs in the same game. Jeff Baker hit in the North Carolina game on
April 28 marked the fifth time this season and the seventh time of
his career that he hit two homers in the same game. He leads Clemson
in that category. Jarrod Schmidt is the only other Tiger with
multiple home runs in more than one game. He hit two home runs April
6 at Florida State and again April 14 vs. Duke. The 10 multi-home run
games this season is the most in school history.


Multi HR Games This Season

Player Multi HR Games

Jeff Baker 5

Michael Johnson 3

Jarrod Schmidt 2



Multi HR Games in a Season by Individual

Player Multi HR Games Year

Jeff Baker 5 2001

Matthew LeCroy 4 1997

Eric Macrina 3 1991

Michael Johnson 3 2001



19 tied at 2 including current Tigers:

Jarrod Schmidt 2 2001

Jeff Baker 2 2000



Multi HR Games in a Season by Team

Year Multi HR Games

2001 10

1986 8

1979 7

1981 7

1991 7

1997 7

1999 5



Back-to-Back

First baseman Michael Johnson and short stop Khalil Greene hit
back-to-back home runs in the fifth inning the April 17 10-4 win over
Georgia. It marked the third time this season that Clemson has
launched consecutive home runs. The Tigers did it in the very first
game of the year when Jeff Baker and Jarrod Schmidt hit homers in the
bottom of the first inning against Richmond. The Tigers did it again
in the series finale at Wake Forest as Ryan Riley and Schmidt belted
blasts in the third inning en route to a 9-1 victory and series win.



Greene Sets HBP Records

Who is the Ron Hunt of Clemson baseball? The answer is starting
shortstop Khalil Greene who believes in getting on base anyway he
can. Hunt set many records for being hit by a pitch in his major
league career with the Mets and Expos. Greene is establishing records
in that area at Clemson.


Greene was hit for the 19th time this season May 9 at Furman to
extend his season record. It was the 45th time in his career, an
all-time Clemson record. He is just a junior. Burnham owned the
all-time record with 39 HBP recorded between 1994-97. Greene was hit
five times in the New York Tech series, including a single game
record three times in the first game of the series, a 24-3 win. That
included being hit twice in one inning in that game, also a first in
Clemson baseball history. Greene has now been hit by a pitch 19 times
and walked 21 times this season. He has a .413 on-base percentage for
his 209 at bats.



Pyzik Lays Down the Bunt
The sacrifice bunt by Steve Pyzik in the 10th inning at Furman on May
9 was his 11th sac bunt of the season, which ranks second in school
history. Casey Stone owns the school record for sacrifice bunts in a
season. He had 14 last year. The pair are the only two in history to
post double digit sacrifice bunt totals in a season.


Top Five Single Season Bunt Totals

Player Year GP Sac

Casey Stone 2000 69 14

Steve Pyzik 2001 52 11

Doug Livingston 1995 68 9

Joe Taylor 1992 54 8

Kurt Bultmann 1996 63 8



Stone on Fire

Senior Casey Stone was 8 for 16 in the four games last week against
Furman and Virginia with six RBI thanks to two doubles. He also
scored five runs for Clemson in the four games. His 4 for 5
performance with three RBIs at Furman May 9 are largely responsible
for his .500 week. He is now batting .376 for the season, which is
second behind Jeff Baker (.381) and is seventh best in the ACC. In
Stone's last 21 games, which was the come-from-behind win over
Coastal Carolina, the left fielder from Abbeville, SC is 36 for 88 or
.409 from the plate.


Pitching Paces Tigers

Clemson ranks second in the ACC in pitching with a 3.96 team ERA.
Florida State owns the best team ERA with 3.27, while Georgia Tech
is third with a 4.41 ERA. In ACC games only, Clemson leads the
league with a 3.01 ERA and has given up only nine home runs in
conference action. The next closest staff in home runs allowed is
Florida State, which has watched opponents tee off on 17 home runs.
The Seminoles have a 3.13 ERA in ACC games to rank second.
Right handed pitcher Steve Reba owns the best ERA in the ACC. The
junior from Fort Wayne, IN sports a 2.22 ERA and also leads the
league with an 10-3 record and opponents batting average. The former
ACC Pitcher of the Week (April 23) is holding opposing batters to a
measly .194. Reba is tops the league in strike outs with 86.
Reba had sprinted out to an 8-1 record before losing two consecutive
starts: April 25 vs. South Carolina and April 29 vs. North Carolina.
He rebounded for his ninth win of the season, a 7-6 victory at N.C.
State on May 5. He pitched the first complete game of his career on
April 20, a 3-0 shut out of Georgia Tech. Against Duke on April 14,
Steve Reba struck out a career-high 12 batters to lead Clemson to a
10-1 victory over the Blue Devils. Reba went six innings, allowed
just two hits and one run. His strike out total was the high mark by
a Clemson pitcher since Ryan Mottl had 12 in a loss to Virginia on
April 4, 1998.

After Reba's complete game shutout against Georgia Tech on April 20,
Schmidt followed with a complete game of his own on Saturday against
the Yellow Jackets. In his second complete game of his career, the
sophomore showed his form from a year ago when he amassed a perfect
9-0 record. Against Georgia Tech, he did not allow Tech to score a
run until the ninth inning. On April 15 vs. Duke, he got the win in 5
1/3 innings allowing just four runs (three earned) off eight hits.
Schmidt is now 6-3 this season and is holding batters to a .241
average, fifth best in the ACC.


Sophomore Matt Henrie is the most improved pitcher on the Clemson
staff in 2001. The sophomore from Jupiter, FL and Cardinal Newman
High School appeared in just five games in 1999 and had an ERA of
13.50. He pitched just 3.1 innings for the season. He red-shirted the
2000 season. So far this year, Henrie has a 5-2 record and a 2.98
ERA, which ranks third in the ACC behind Reba and Virginia's Dan
Street, who the Tigers did not face over the weekend. He is holding
opposing batters to a .220 average, second best in the conference,
again behind Reba. Henrie was named ACC Pitcher of the Week (May 7)
for pitching seven shutout innings at N.C. State. He is a two-time
honoree after grabbing kudos earlier this year when he shutout
Maryland 7-0 on March 18. He pitched six innings and allowed just
three hits, no runs and struck out five of the 25 batters he faced.

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