Johnson Leads Tigers Over Terps in ACC Opener, 8-6


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CLEMSON, SC -- Red-shirt freshman Michael Johnson had five RBIs, a triple, and home run to lead #4 Clemson (17-3, 1-0) past Maryland 8-6 Friday evening in the ACC opener for both teams. The Tigers did their damage in just two innings, the third and seventh innings. Six of the Tigers' eight hits also came in those two innings. Maryland mounted a ninth-inning comeback, but fell two runs short. Clemson improved to 40-1 all-time against the Terrapins (5-12, 0-1) at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.


Scott Berney (6-0) earned his sixth win in as many starts, as he allowed five hits, two runs, and no walks while striking out seven in 8.0 innings. Berney has given up just four runs in 45.0 innings pitched in 2000 for a 0.80 ERA. Nick Glaser picked up his eighth save of the season despite allowing two walks, a hit, and three inherited runners to score in the ninth inning. Terrapin starter Jamie Hammond (2-4) allowed five runs, four hits, and six walks in 6.0 innings, as he suffered the loss. Terrapin pitchers walked seven Clemson batters.


Maryland took a 1-0 lead in the first inning when Matt Swope singled, stole second, and scored on Chuck Easter's sacrifice fly.


Johnson came up in the first inning with the bases loaded and one out, but popped up. Two innings later, he came to the plate in an identical situation and tripled over centerfielder Matt Swope's head, clearing the bases. Jarrod Schmidt and Ryan Riley both followed with RBI doubles to put Clemson ahead 5-1.


Craig Munroe led off the fourth with a double and came around to score on Daryl Whitmer's RBI groundout.


Clemson increased its lead to 8-2 in the seventh. Jeff Baker's sacrifice fly plated Patrick Boyd, and Johnson followed with a towering home run to right field, a two-run shot and his third long ball of the season.


The Terrapins, down six runs entering the ninth, rallied with four runs and had the potential tying run at second base. Steve Oursler's bases loaded single off Glaser brought Maryland to within 8-5, still with no outs. The Terrapins had the bases loaded and no outs when Sean Lomas grounded into a double play as Whitmer came home made the score 8-6. After Swope walked, he advanced to second on a passed ball as Oursler stayed at third. But Glaser thwarted the Terrapin rally when he forced Brian Patenaude to ground out to second to end the game.


Oursler led Maryland with two hits and two RBIs, while Munroe had two hits in three at bats.


The two teams will play the second of three games Saturday at 2:00 at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.

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