Hinson Strong As Tigers Take Game Two From Blue Devils

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CLEMSON - Sophomore lefthander Ryan Hinson allowed two runs over 6.1 innings pitched and all nine starters collected at least one hit to help #6 Clemson register a 7-2 victory over Duke in front of 4,485 fans at Doug Kingsmore Stadium on Saturday.

The Tigers took a 2-0 lead in the series, and improved to 13-4 overall and 2-0 in the ACC, while the Blue Devils dropped to 17-6 overall and 0-5 in the ACC.

Hinson (1-0) struck out three in 6.1 innings pitched to earn his first win of the season. It was also a career-long outing for him. D.J. Mitchell pitched the final 2.2 innings, allowing two hits and no runs with four strikeouts to close out the game.

Michael Ness (3-1) allowed six runs on eight hits in 3.2 innings pitched to take the loss for Duke.

Clemson's offense once again provided plenty of support, as it clubbed 12 hits while scoring seven runs. All nine Tiger starters collected hits in the game, including multi-hit performances by Andy D'Alessio, Marquez Smith, and Addison Johnson. Johnson also belted his first career home run, a solo shot in the fourth.

Clemson opened the scoring in the first with four runs on five hits. Brad Chalk led off with a double to left field, making Saturday's contest the 44th game in a row he reached base via a hit or a walk dating back to last season. Chalk advanced to third on a passed ball and scored on Taylor Harbin's double. D'Alessio followed with a single through the right side that plated Harbin. Smith then blasted a two-run homer to left-center to put the Tigers up 4-0. It was Smith's fourth home run of the year. Clemson entered the game with just four first-inning runs all season as well.

The Tigers tacked on three more runs in the fourth inning. Johnson sent his first career homer over the fence in right-center. David Bunnell followed with a double to right-center and advanced to third on a groundout by Wilson Boyd. Harbin was hit by a pitch and then stole second. D'Alessio singled to right-center, scoring Bunnell and Harbin, and extended the lead to 7-0.

Brett Bartles answered back in the fifth inning for the Blue Devils with a solo home run to left-center field, his third of the year.

Duke scored one run again in the sixth, as Alexander Hassan led off with a double to left field, reached third on a groundout, and scored on a wild pitch.

The Blue Devils threatened to score in the seventh, as Jeremy Gould doubled to right-center and advanced to third on a single by Jonathan Nicolla. With one out, Mitchell was brought in to relieve Hinson. Mitchell struck out the next batter and Harbin made a diving catch on a liner to end the inning.

Clemson and Duke will conclude their three-game series on Sunday at 1:00 PM.

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