Home Runs carry No. 6 Clemson past No. 7 NC State in ACC Tournament


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The home run in the sixth inning was Shaffer’s 11th of the season.

DURHAM, N.C. – Clemson used the long ball and a deep bullpen to defeat NC State 6-3 and decide the Pool B representative in Sunday’s 2011 ACC Baseball Championship title game.

The win tied Clemson (41-18) with Florida State at 2-1 in pool play, but the Seminoles advance to the title game by virtue of their 6-3 win over the Tigers on Thursday.


The Wolfpack (34-25) entered the game knowing that a win would send them into Sunday’s title game. They also entered with a pitching staff depleted by their previous game, a 15-inning loss to Georgia Tech.

Freshman D.J. Thomas made his second start of the season for NC State and went a gutsy season-high 4.2 innings to jumpstart the Wolfpack.

Pratt Maynard hit a rare infield double in the first, a line drive off the right knee of Clemson starter Jonathan MeyerJonathan Meyer
RH Pitcher
#28 6-0, 165
San Diego, CA

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. Meyer gamely attempted to stay in the contest and retired Maynard for the third out as Maynard tried to score from third on a pitch that got past catcher Spencer KieboomSpencer Kieboom
Catcher
#22 6-0, 210
Marietta, GA

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.


But the visibly limping Meyer walked Tarran Senay to lead off the second and Andrew Ciencin doubled off the leftfield wall, Senay scoring when the ricochet got past left fielder Richie ShafferRichie Shaffer
Infielder
#8 6-3, 205
Charlotte, NC

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. Meyer lasted one more batter before being pulled for David HaseldenDavid Haselden
RH Pitcher
#29 6-4, 240
Spartanburg, SC

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, who was greeted by an RBI single off the bat of John Gianis.

Jason StolzJason Stolz
Infielder
#2 6-2, 200
Marietta, GA

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became Clemson’s first base runner with a one-out double in the third. But he was erased trying to advance to third on Kieboom’s fly out.

The Tigers got on the board in the fourth, when ACC Player of the Year Brad MillerBrad Miller
Infielder
#13 6-1, 185
Windermere, FL

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lined his fifth home run of the season.

NC State extended its lead to 3-1 in the bottom of the fourth as Ciencin drove in Harold Riggins with a sacrifice fly.

Thomas retired the first two Clemson hitters in the fifth but was pulled for Josh Easley after Stolz ripped his second double of the game.

Thomas said he hoped to get through five but made a couple of mistakes at the wrong time.

Clemson’s rally began in the top of the sixth. Easley left after walking the first two batters. Lefty Nick Rice retired Miller and Will LambWill Lamb
Outfielder
#30 6-6, 175
Seaford, VA

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but surrendered a three-run homer by Richie Shaffer that put the Tigers in the lead for the first time.

The home run was possible only because a hustling Lamb barely beat the throw to first after a force out at second.

The home run was Shaffer’s 11th of the season.


Chris EppsChris Epps
Outfielder
#26 6-1, 195
Stone Mountain, GA

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led off the seventh with his 10th homer, making the score 5-3 and sending Rice to the showers.

Clemson padded their margin in the eighth. Phil PohlPhil Pohl
Catcher
#9 5-11, 210
Cooperstown, NY

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and Miller started with singles, prompting another pitching change. Lamb scored Pohl with a sacrifice fly off Chris Overman.

The Tigers used seven pitchers, with the bullpen allowing a single run over 7.2 innings. Winner Matt CampbellMatt Campbell
RH Pitcher
#36 5-10, 165
Alpharetta, GA

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(1-0) noted that Meyer’s early departure placed unusual strain on the relief corps. “As soon as Meyer went down, everyone knew we were going to have to step up. We were ready and all did our jobs.”

Rice (1-1) took the loss.


Scott WeismannScott Weismann
RH Pitcher
#33 6-0, 190
Boxborough, MA

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worked a perfect ninth for his seventh save.

Losing coach Elliott Avent praised his team’s effort. “We battled and battled and battled. But the 15-inning game cost us a lot.”

Miller and Stolz had two hits for Clemson, while Ciencin had two hits and a sacrifice fly for NC State.

Attendance was announced at. 4,255.



Quotes

Jack Legett, Head Coach

Opening Statement…

“It was really two different ballgames. They (N.C. State) owned the first half of the game and got two runs. Brad (Miller) broke the ice to make it 2-1 and then they got up 3-1. We pitched really well after that. I thought our guys pitched exceptionally well, and the two home runs (from Chris Epps and Richie Shaffer) were huge. We started controlling the second part of the game. We were fortunate to win. We put together some good innings offensively as the game went along.”


On the conditions of starting pitcher Jonathan Meyer and second baseman Jason Stolz…

“Jonathan Meyer just has a bruised kneecap. He got a couple more outs, but then we decided it was time to get him out of there. He’ll be fine, it’s just going to be sore for a little bit. (Jason) Stolz hit his middle finger a little bit just under the nail catching the ball there at second base. He’ll be okay by next weekend.”



On the possibility of hosting a Regional next weekend…

“We had a great second half. We’re 27-6 in the last 32 games. We’ve got everyone back healthy, which was a little bit of a problem early on. So, I’d like to think that we’ve played well down the stretch and our strength of schedule and RPI is something that will catch their (the tournament committee’s) eye. But, we don’t have control over it, and if we go someplace else, we’ll be ready to play. We’d certainly love to play at home, that’s for sure.”



Richie Shaffer, Sophomore First Baseman

On his home run…

“Will (Lamb) did a great job hustling down the line in the at-bat before me, and that was huge. We talk about that all the time. That’s how we do things. Any one of our guys would have delivered in that situation, and it just happened to be me. I was just looking for a good pitch to hit.”



Brad Miller, Junior Shortstop

On continuing to play hard even though Clemson could not reach the Championship game…

“That just shows the character of our team and the type of guys we have. We knew coming into it that we couldn’t go any farther in this tournament. We’re not trying to give away any games. We treat every game with importance and go out there trying to get a win.”



Matt Campbell, Freshman Pitcher

On the efforts of the Clemson bullpen…

“We knew we had to step up when (Jonathan) Meyer went down, and I came in and everyone else behind me did their job really well. It was just a team effort, both on offense and in the bullpen today.”



Clemson 6 (41-18)

Player			AB	R	H	RBI	BB	SO	PO	A	LOB
John Hinson 3b		4	1	0	0	1	0	3	2	1
Phil Pohl dh		3	1	1	0	1	0	0	0	0
Brad Miller ss		4	1	2	1	0	0	2	3	0
Will Lamb cf		3	1	1	1	0	0	1	0	0
Richie Shaffer 1b	4	1	1	3	0	1	8	0	1
Jeff Schaus lf		4	0	0	0	0	0	1	0	1
Chris Epps rf		3	1	1	1	0	2	2	0	0
Jason Stolz 2b		2	0	2	0	1	0	2	5	0
 Steve Wilkerson 2b	1	0	0	0	0	0	1	0	0
Spencer Kieboom c	4	0	0	0	0	0	5	1	1
Jonathan Meyer p	0	0	0	0	0	0	1	0	0
 David Haselden p	0	0	0	0	0	0	1	1	0
 Matt Campbell p	0	0	0	0	0	0	0	1	0
 Alex Frederick p	0	0	0	0	0	0	0	0	0
 Joseph Moorefield p	0	0	0	0	0	0	0	0	0
 Kevin Brady p		0	0	0	0	0	0	0	0	0
 Scott Weismann p	0	0	0	0	0	0	0	0	0
Totals......		32	6	8	6	3	3	27	13	4

N.C. State 3 (34-25)

Player			AB	R	H	RBI	BB	SO	PO	A	LOB
Brett Williams cf	3	0	0	0	0	0	3	1	1
Pratt Maynard c		4	0	1	0	0	0	4	0	0
Harold Riggins 1b	3	1	1	0	0	1	5	1	2
Tarran Senay lf		3	1	1	0	1	1	5	0	0
Andrew Ciencin 3b	3	1	2	1	0	0	3	0	1
Danny Canela dh		4	0	0	0	0	2	0	0	0
John Gianis rf		4	0	1	1	0	0	4	0	1
Matt Bergquist 2b	3	0	1	0	1	1	1	3	0
Chris Diaz ss		2	0	1	0	0	0	1	1	0
D.J. Thomas p		0	0	0	0	0	0	1	0	0
 Josh Easley p		0	0	0	0	0	0	0	0	0
 Nick Rice p		0	0	0	0	0	0	0	0	0
 Danny Healey p		0	0	0	0	0	0	0	0	0
 Chris Overman p	0	0	0	0	0	0	0	0	0
Totals......		29	3	8	2	2	5	27	6	5

Score by Innings                    R  H  E
-------------------------------------------
Clemson............. 000 103 110 -  6  8  1
N.C. State.......... 020 100 000 -  3  8  0
-------------------------------------------

E - SCHAUS(2). DP - Clemson 3; N.C. State 2. LOB - Clemson 4; N.C. State 5.
2B - STOLZ 2(9); MAYNARD(21); RIGGINS(11); SENAY(7); CIENCIN(11). HR -
MILLER(5); SHAFFER(11); EPPS(10). HBP - EPPS; B. WILLIAMS; RIGGINS. SH -
DIAZ(8). SF - LAMB(6); CIENCIN(4).

Clemson			IP	H	R	ER	BB	SO	AB	BF
Jonathan Meyer		1.1	2	2	2	1	1	5	6
David Haselden		2.2	3	1	1	1	0	8	11
Matt Campbell		2.1	1	0	0	0	1	6	8
Alex Frederick		0.2	1	0	0	0	0	3	3
Joseph Moorefield	0.1	0	0	0	0	0	1	1
Kevin Brady		0.2	1	0	0	0	1	3	3
Scott Weismann		1.0	0	0	0	0	2	3	3

N.C. State		IP	H	R	ER	BB	SO	AB	BF
D.J. Thomas		4.2	4	1	1	0	2	17	17
Josh Easley		0.1	0	2	2	2	0	1	3
Nick Rice		1.0	2	2	2	0	0	5	5
Danny Healey		1.0	2	1	1	1	0	4	5
Chris Overman		2.0	0	0	0	0	1	5	7

Win - CAMPBELL (1-0).  Loss - RICE (1-1).  Save - WEISMANN (7).
HBP - by HASELDEN (RIGGINS); by CAMPBELL (B. WILLIAMS); by OVERMAN (EPPS). BK -
OVERMAN(4).
Umpires - HP: Danny Everett  1B: Frank Sylvester  2B: Randy Harvey  3B: Bryant
Woodall  Start: 12:57 PM   Time: 3:00   Attendance: 4255
HASELDEN faced 1 batter in the 5th.
EASLEY faced 2 batters in the 6th.
RICE faced 1 batter in the 7th.
HEALEY faced 2 batters in the 8th.

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