CLEMSON, SC-- Chad Tracy blasted a home run and a double and drove in four runs, and Foye Minton defeated Clemson for the second time in less than a year, leading East Carolina to a 12-4 win over #4 Clemson Wednesday night at Kingsmore Stadium.
East Carolina, ranked 17th in the country, improved to 18-4 with the victory, while fourth-ranked Clemson dropped to 16-3. Clemson had won 14 of its last 15, including a 7-0 win over East Carolina on Tuesday.
Minton defeated Clemson last year on March 17th, 14-2. Minton pitched seven innings and allowed just three runs and five hits. He held the Tigers to two runs in six hits last year in Greenville, NC. Tiger starter Ryan Childs (0-1) suffered the loss.
Four different players drove in at least two runs for East Carolina. In addition to Tracy's performance, Lee Delfino, Clayton McCullough, and Bryant Ward all had two RBIs apiece. East Carolina scored 12 runs against a Clemson pitching staff that had a 1.56 ERA entering the game and had not given up more than six runs in a game all year.
Clemson took a 2-0 lead in the second inning. Michael Johnson opened the inning with a walk, and scored on Jeff Baker's first career home run, a shot over the left field fence off East Carolina starter and winner Foye Minton (3-1).
East Carolina scored a run in the top of the third on a single by Erik Bakich, a fielder's choice, and a triple by leadoff hitter James Molinari to right field.
Clemson kept a 2-1 lead into the fifth when the Pirates scored five runs to take a four-run lead. Joseph Hastings started the uprising with a walk. He went to second on a single by Erik Bakich. After a strikeout, Bryant Ward, the number-nine hitter in the East Carolina order, but a .412 hitter, doubled to right center to drive in two runs.
One out later Nick Schnabel walked, bringing Delfino to the plate. The Pirate shortstop tripled down the right field line to bring in two more runs. Delfino later scored in a wild pitch.
East Carolina scored two more runs in the sixth on a double by Chad Tracy, a single by Hastings, and a two-run single by Clayton McCullough.
East Carolina left only three runners on base, while the Tigers stranded eight.
Clemson made the count 8-3 in the bottom of the sixth on the first career home run by Jarrod Schmidt. He was the second freshman in the Clemson lineup to hit his first career home run in the contest.
Chad Tracy hit a three-run home run in the top of the seventh off Clemson reliever Mike Proto. It was just the second home run hit by a Clemson opponent on the season.
Clemson opens its ACC schedule this weekend when Maryland comes to town for three games, Friday (7:15), Saturday (2:00), and Sunday (2:00).