Reba Dominates William & Mary 4-1


by - Correspondent -
    |
Jarrod Schmidt congratulates Michael Johnson on his homer in the second.

CLEMSON - Steve Reba made believers of William & Mary in the first round of
the NCAA regional Friday night at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.


"Coach told us to wait on his curves and try to wear him out," said William
& Mary shortstop Brendan Harris. "We didn't think he could do it for nine
innings, but he did."


Reba's threw his curve ball for strikes and pitched a complete game
four-hitter to lead Clemson to a 4-1 win over the Tribe in front of 3,617.
"That first pitch, you could see the spin and you didn't want to hit it,"
said Bradley. "But he would throw it for strikes."


Reba struck out eight and gave up his only run in the ninth. By that time,
the Tigers were in control.


 Steve Reba won his 4th straight.

Michael Johnson hit his 15th homerun of the season in the second. He hit a
pitch from William & Mary's Whitt Farr over the right field fence. To give
Clemson a 1-0 lead.


Clemson added a run in the sixth. With two outs Khalil Greene hit a fly ball
to left. Left fielder Marshall Hubbard misjudged the ball and it glanced off
his glove and fell. Greene made it to second on the error.


After Johnson walked, designated hitter Jarrod Schmidt hit a ball past
short. Greene scored on the hit from second.


Clemson had runners in scoring position three other times against Farr
(9-6), who pitched 7 2/3 innings. In the eighth, Johnson and Schmidt singled
against Farr before both scored on a single by Chad Coder against reliever
Ben Shepard.


 Riley thrown out at the plate.



"Chad's hit in the end was huge," said Clemson coach Jack Leggett. "I could
have been shaky going into the ninth up 2-0."


Reba (12-3), however, only needed Johnson's homerun to beat the Tribe. He
gave up just four hits. Reba could have easily taken a no-hitter into the
ninth. Stephen Booker reached on a single in the third - a ball that glanced
off Greene's glove at shortstop. Mike O'Kelly was given a single on a ball
that went under Greene's glove in the seventh.


"I just tried to do what I've done all year and throw any pitch at any
time," said Reba. "And then let the defense play behind me. It worked out
well."


Reba gave up his only run of the night in the ninth. Michael Brown led off
the inning with a double. He was driven in on a single by Brendan Harris.
"We're starting to get used to Reba," said Leggett. "We always play pretty
good defense behind him."

Clemson will face fourth-seeded Seton Hall today at 2 p.m. Seton Hall
knocked off first-seeded South Alabama, 7-2. South Alabama and William &
Mary play at 11 a.m. The winner of the 11 a.m. game and the loser of the 2
p.m. game play at 7 p.m.


Leggett said he will likely start Schmidt (6-3) against Seton Hall.


POST-GAME QUOTES


Winning Coach (Jack Leggett, Clemson)


"I thought it was a very well-played game by us pitching and defensively. I thought Steve Reba did a tremendous job pitching. We always play pretty good defense behind him. Today we played very well defensively and we got a few big hits along the way. Jarrod Schmidt's hit was a big one to put us up 2-0. Michael Johnson's homerun to break the ice and make it 1-0 was big."


"I felt good about how we played. I thought the bench was into it. The intensity was there and the focus on what we have to do in this tournament was there. I hope we'll be ready to play tomorrow against a very scrappy and tough Seton Hall team."


Losing Coach (Jim Farr, William and Mary)


"Steve Reba pitched a heck of a game here tonight. He kept off balance all night long and he really did a tremendous job. The first time through the lineup I told our guys to stay off the breaking ball s early in the count, but he was able to locate them for strikes and he forced us to swing at them. We were able to slow him down a little bit the second time through the lineup but he made some very good adjustments with his pitches. We are a very good fastball hitting team and his breaking ball was really difficult for our guys to hit tonight."


'We have to Clemson all the credit tonight. They played very well, and even though we were able to keep the game close with our pitching, they did what they had to do to win the game. We now just have to bounce back and get ready to play again tomorrow."


BOX SCORE

William & Mary 1 (35-19)

Player          	AB	R	H	BI
BROWN, Michael rf	4	1	1	0
WALK, Mitch dh  	3	0	0	0
  JONES, Tim dh     	1	0	0	0
HARRIS, Brendan ss	4	0	1	1
WAKEFIELD, Trey 3b	3	0	0	0
O'KELLY, Mike 1b	4	0	1	0
HUBBARD, Marshall lf	3	0	0	0
  STEPHENSON, Ricky lf	0	0	0	0
McGUIRE, Matt 2b	3	0	0	0
  LENTZ, John 2b	0	0	0	0
BOOKER, Stephen cf	3	0	1	0
KIRBY, Matt c        	2	0	0	0
FARR, Whitt p      	0	0	0	0
  SHEPARD, Ben p	0	0	0	0
Totals......     	30	1	4	1

Clemson University 4 (39-20)

Player          	AB	R	H	BI
Ryan Riley 2b      	3	0	1	0
Kyle Frank rf      	4	0	0	0
Jeff Baker 3b     	3	0	0	0
Khalil Greene ss	4	1	0	0
Michael Johnson 1b	3	2	2	1
Jarrod Schmidt dh	3	1	2	1
Chad Coder cf       	4	0	1	2
Zane Green lf    	3	0	0	0
Steve Pyzik c     	4	0	1	0
Steve Reba p      	0	0	0	0
Totals......      	31	4	7	4

Score by Innings                    R  H  E
-------------------------------------------
William & Mary...... 000 000 001 -  1  4  1
Clemson University.. 010 001 02X -  4  7  0
-------------------------------------------

E - HUBBARD(2). DP - W&M 1. LOB - W&M 4; Clemson 8. 2B - BROWN(13). HR -
JOHNSON(15). HBP - RILEY; SCHMIDT. SH - KIRBY(15). SB - WAKEFIELD(7); RILEY
2(11);JOHNSON(10); SCHMIDT(5); CODER(18).

William & Mary      	IP	H	R	ER	BB	SO	WP	BK	HP	IBB	AB	BF	FO	GO
FARR, Whitt  L,9-6	7.2	6	4	3	2	5 	0	0	2	0	29	33	9	8
SHEPARD, Ben          	0.1	1	0	0	1	0	0 	0	0	0	2	3	0	1

Clemson University  	IP	H	R	ER	BB	SO 	WP	BK	HP	IBB	AB	BF	FO	GO
Steve Reba  W,12-3	9.0	4	1	1	1	8 	0	0	0	0	30	32	8	11

HB - FARR 2.

Strikeouts - BROWN; O'KELLY; HUBBARD; McGUIRE; BOOKER 2; KIRBY 2; CODER 2;
GREEN 3. Walks - WAKEFIELD; BAKER; JOHNSON; GREEN.

Umpires - Home:Mark Ditsworth  1st:Kevin Daugherty  2nd:Lee Prejean
3rd:Dick Flahrety Start: 7:38   Time: 2:11   Attendance: 3617


BONUS COVERAGE


By DAN SCOTT


CLEMSON — All week Steve Reba had been downplaying Friday's matchup against
William & Mary in the NCAA Regional opener, trying to approach the game as if
it were just another start. But down deep, Reba knew Friday was special.


Once on the mound, so was he.


Reba threw a complete-game four-hitter, leading No. 2 seed Clemson to a 4-1
victory over the third-seeded Tribe in the NCAA Regional opening round at
Doug Kingsmore Stadium. Baffling William & Mary hitters with a variety of
breaking balls and off-speed pitches, the junior right hander (12-3) struck
out eight and walked only one in his tidy, 110-pitch gem.


After the game, praise for his performance came from both dugouts.


 Riley steals second.


"Steve Reba pitched a heck of a ball game. He was a breaking ball machine,"
said Tribe coach Jim Farr. "The first time through the lineup we went up
there with the idea we were going to lay off his breaking ball, but he kept
pumping it through there for strike after strike after strike. We tried to
make an adjustment the second and third time through the lineup...but he kept
making good pitches and located his breaking ball all night long."


"Reba did a tremendous job...but we're starting to get used to that," Clemson
coach Jack Leggett said. "He's been throwing strikes all year long and
throwing his breaking ball for strikes, and just doing a tremendous job."


Reba did his best to remain low key.


"I just tried to go out there and do what I've done all year," he said.
"Throw all my pitches...any pitch in any count, try to work ahead and get
some ground balls and let my defense play for me. It worked out well."


The importance of Reba's effort was magnified by what happened earlier in the
day, when No. 4 seed Seton Hall upset top-seeded South Alabama 7-2. Now, with
a win over the Pirates in today's winner's bracket game at 3 p.m., Clemson
would breeze into Sunday's championship game and need only to win one more
game to advance to the Super Regional for a third consecutive year.


However, despite Reba's dominance, the Tigers' ticket to the winner's bracket
wasn't stamped until late in Friday's game.


Tribe starter Whitt Farr (9-6), nearly matched Reba pitch for pitch for most
of the evening. His only early mistake was a fastball he left up in the zone
to Clemson first baseman Michael Johnson in the second inning. Johnson took
advantage of the miscue by depositing the pitch some 50 feet beyond fence in
right-center, directly over the 375-foot sign, for a 1-0 lead.


 Frank with the nice running catch.

Clemson (39-20) held that slim margin until shoddy Tribe defense and a
clutch, two-out hit by Jarrod Schmidt gave the Tigers another run in the
sixth. With two outs, Khalil Greene hit a routine fly ball to left field that
Marshall Hubbard dropped, allowing Greene to reach second base. After a walk
to Michael Johnson, Schmidt followed with a ground single to left which
scored Greene for a 2-0 lead.


Clemson finally chased Farr in the eighth with back-to-back two-out singles
by Johnson and Schmidt. A pair of stolen bases put runners on second and
third against reliever Ben Shepard, and Chad Coder broke the game open by
greeting the new pitcher with a two-run single for a 4-0 advantage.


William & Mary (35-19) finally broke through against Reba in the ninth, when
Michael Brown opened the inning with a double and later scored on a hit by
Brendan Harris.


The tournament continues today with the Tribe facing South Alabama at 11 a.m.
Clemson meets Seton Hall at 3 p.m., and the loser of that game faces the
winner of today's first game at 7 p.m.


The championship round will be held Sunday.


NOTES: Clemson announced an attendance figure of 3,617...The Tigers played
without Casey Stone, who was fulfilling his one-game suspension in NCAA
Tournament play due to the incident at the end of last summer's College World
Series...The game took just 2:11 to complete...Schmidt is expected to start
today vs. Seton Hall.

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