Steve Wilkerson went 2-for-4 with a solo homer and two RBIs to lead Clemson to a 5-3 win over Wright State in the first game of a doubleheader at Doug Kingsmore Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Daniel Gossett (1-0) earned the win by tossing 5.0 effective innings in a starting role. He gave up six hits, one run, and two walks with six strikeouts. Matt Campbell recorded his second save of the year by retiring the last batter of the game.
Wright State starter Casey Henn (1-1) suffered the loss, as he allowed five hits, three runs (two earned), and four walks with two strikeouts.
The Tigers took advantage of an error to score the game's first run in the first inning. Thomas Brittle led off with a walk and Steven Duggar singled to left field. Wilkerson popped up his bunt to third-baseman Michael Timm, then Timm's throw to second base in an attempt to double off Brittle was errant, allowing the runners to move up a base. Brittle scored on Shane Kennedy's sacrifice fly to right field.
The Raiders evened the score in the top of the third inning. Sam Picchiotti led off with a double to right-center and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Three batters later with two outs, Mark Fowler grounded a single through the left side to plate Picchiotti.
In the bottom of the third inning, Wilkerson, a junior switch-hitter, smacked a solo homer to right-center, his first home run of the season, second of his career, and first as a lefthanded batter.
The Tigers extended their lead in the fifth inning. Brittle reached on a one-out walk and stole second. Two batters later, Wilkerson flared a two-out single to left-center to score Brittle.
In the eighth inning, Kennedy and Jon McGibbon led off with walks, then both moved up a base on a balk. Kennedy scored on a wild pitch, then Jay Baum singled down the right-field line to score McGibbon.
In the ninth inning, Justin Kopale and Beau Phillips hit one-out singles and moved up a base on Timm's groundout. Picchiotti flared a two-out single to center to score Kopale and Phillips, then Garrett Gray ripped a single through the left side. But with the potential tying run on first base, Jeff Limbaugh flied out to right field to end the game.
Wilkerson led the Tigers by going 2-for-4 with a homer and two RBIs.
Picchiotti went 3-for-5 with two doubles and two RBIs to lead Wright State, who outhit the Tigers 10-7.
Tiger pitchers combined to blank Wright State in Clemson's 6-0 victory in the
second game of a doubleheader at Doug Kingsmore Stadium on Saturday. The
Tigers, who took a 2-0 lead in the series, improved to 4-1 on the season. The
Raiders dropped to 3-2.
The Tigers scored a run in the first inning and two more runs in the third inning to give them an early lead. The Raiders put pressure on the Clemson defense all game, putting six leadoff batters on base and 19 batters in all on base. But the Tigers turned four double plays and did not allow any of the Raiders' 19 baserunners to score.
Freshman Clate Schmidt (1-0) earned his first career win by tossing 4.0 scoreless innings. In his first career start, the righthander allowed five hits and one walk with two strikeouts. Patrick Andrews, Zack Erwin, Jackson Campana, and Clay Bates combined to pitch the last 5.0 innings to close out the game.
Taylor Braun (0-1), the first of four Raider pitchers, suffered the loss. He gave up seven hits, three runs, and one walk with three strikeouts in 5.0 innings pitched.
In the first inning, Steven Duggar drew a one-out walk and advanced to third on Steve Wilkerson's single through the right side. Shane Kennedy then ripped a single up the middle to score Duggar.
Clemson added to its lead in the third inning. Thomas Brittle led off with a bloop double down the left-field line and advanced to third on Duggar's groundout. Wilkerson followed with a line-drive single to left-center. Two batters later, Wilkerson stole second with two outs, then Jon McGibbon singled down the right-field line to score Wilkerson.
In the sixth inning, McGibbon and Jay Baum led off with walks, then both runners moved up a base on Tyler Krieger's groundout. Pinch-hitter Kevin Bradley was hit-by-pitch to load the bases, then Garrett Boulware grounded an 0-2 pitch up the middle for a single to score McGibbon and Baum.
The Tigers tacked on another run in the seventh inning when McGibbon belted a two-out single to right field to score Kennedy. Kennedy reached on a two-out, infield single and advanced to second on an error.
Wilkerson led Clemson's 11-hit attack by going 3-for-4 with a double, RBI, and stolen base. Brittle, Kennedy, and McGibbon all added two hits apiece.
Sam Picchiotti and Jason DeFevers had two hits apiece for the Raiders, who totaled nine hits, five walks, and five hit-by-pitches in the contest.
Clemson and Wright State will play game-three of the three-game series on Sunday at 1:00 PM