The Clemson Tiger baseball team finds itself in a hole once again. They must now climb their way out of the loser's bracket in the ACC Tournament. The task begins Thursday morning at 10:00 against Miami. Clemson and Miami were expected to square off on Thursday in the winner's bracket, but now they find themselves one game shy of elimination.
The Hurricanes are on a five game losing streak, and their ace Cesar Carillo suffered his second consecutive loss. Miami is also in jeopardy of not hosting a regional. Miami will turn to Dan Touchet to turn their fortunes around. Touchet suffered the loss against Clemson last Friday night (9-2) to drop his record to 3-4. Touchet went 6.0 innings giving up six runs, two of which were earned. Touchet will throw a lot off-speed pitches.
It will be a test of patience for the Tigers' hitters. Clemson will look to come out aggressive after a disappointing one run effort against Virginia. Taylor Harbin, Tyler Colvin, and Kris Harvey will play a major role in the Tigers fate. If they are unable to bounce back from a combined 2 for 11 performance on Wednesday, it could spell an early exit for the Tigers.
Josh Cribb will get the start on the mound for the Tigers. Cribb was brilliant against Miami last week. Cribb went 7.0 innings giving two runs on seven hits, while striking out nine. Clemson will need Cribb to be masterful once again on Thursday. Head Coach Jack Leggett is putting the ball in the hands of one of the most fierce competitors on the club. These are the situations Cribb looks to be put in, and his teammates have the utmost confident playing behind him.
Despite giving up eight runs, Coach Leggett did not have to expend his bullpen. A win is needed tomorrow to remove any doubt the NCAA committee may have about giving the Tigers a regional. It is now a game of survive and advance for the Tigers.