The 2006 baseball season kicked off this past weekend with a three-game sweep over James Madison. The Tigers took an opening day doubleheader on Friday and completed the sweep on Sunday.
Jason Berken completed his rehab from Tommy John surgery on Friday. Berken was dominate in a five inning nine strikeout performance. Berken had his adrenaline working early. James Madison would not even foul a ball off until the second inning.
Berken keyed what would be a dominating weekend for the Tigers’ pitchers. Many thought it would be hard to top the performance by Berken, but the Tigers put together a standout performance in game two.
Starter Stephen Faris combined with relievers Daniel Moskos and Steve Richard to throw a one-hitter in game two. Richard made his much anticipated debut earning his first save in a Clemson uniform.
Senior Josh Cribb would shut the Dukes down on Sunday. Cribb pitched five scoreless innings only allowing two hits. PJ Zocchi, Ryan Hinson, Stephen Clyne, and Richard closed the final four innings for the Tigers. The true freshman left hander Hinson was on the mound, when the Dukes scored their only run. The run was unearned.
In his debut, Hinson was a little nervous as the first three batters reached base. Hinson would settle down striking out the next two, but an error by third baseman Herman Demmink cost the Tigers the shutout.
Tyler Colvin and Adrian Casanova led the Tigers in hitting. Colvin made an early case that he would be the man to replace Kris Harvey’s 27 home runs. Colvin hit three home runs in the series. Casanova was outstanding on the weekend, including his first home run at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.
Junior college transfer Marquez Smith made a nice debut. Smith hit a shot into the parking lot behind left field on the game two. In game one, Smith reached base in all three plate appearances and scored all three times.
Travis Storrer pushed his hitting streak to 12 games before seeing his streak snapped in the series finale.
The Tigers will begin a three-game series with Mercer on Friday at 4 pm at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.