Auburn Baseball Loses to Clemson

CLEMSON, S.C.*Seventh-ranked Auburn's 10-game winning streak came to a halt Friday afternoon as No. 25 Clemson defeated the Tigers' 14-9 at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.  Auburn (14-2) trailed 9-0 early and cut the deficit to a pair of runs twice, however, Clemson (6-5) responded each time to hold on for the victory.

"They came out and pounded us," said Auburn head coach Steve Renfroe. "When you score nine runs early, there's no answer.  We battled and got back in the game. There were a lot of things that weren't good, but we were pleased with how hard we played."

Clemson, which scored in every inning and hit five home runs, scored single runs in the first and second innings before plating four in the third, to take a 6-0 advantage. Catcher Lou Santangelo hit a three-run home run in the Tigers' third.

Brad McCann gave Clemson an 8-0 lead in the fourth inning with a two-out, two-run homer to left-center field.  Bradley Everett added the Tigers' fourth homer of the day with a solo shot in the fifth inning.

Auburn scored four runs on four hits in the sixth inning, including a two-run home run by catcher Josh Bell.  Tug Hulett led off with a double before Bell went deep to right field for his sixth homer or the season.  Derek Sain doubled and scored in the inning and J.T. Williamson added an RBI double.

After Clemson scored a run in the bottom of the sixth, Auburn scored four more runs to cut the deficit to 10-8.  Ben Sprague and Tug Hulett singled to start the inning and later scored on a wild pitch and ground out.  Chuck Jeroloman doubled home Josh Bell in the inning and later scored on a Derek Sain ground out.

Clemson answered with a run in the seventh and the Tigers cut the lead to 11-9 in the eighth on a Ben Sprague RBI single, before the homestanding Tigers put the game away with three unearned runs in the bottom of the eighth inning.

With two outs in the eighth and the bases loaded Auburn shortstop Chuck Jeroloman committed just his second error of the season, allowing one run to score before Clemson first baseman Andy D'Alessio doubled home two runs for the final margin of victory.

Jason Berken (2-1) picked up the win for Clemson after allowing four runs with a career-high eight strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings.  Patrick Hogan picked up his second save after working the final 1 2/3 for the Tigers.

Cory Duiett (2-1) took the loss for Auburn after allowing eight runs on six hits in four innings of work.  Five other Auburn pitchers saw action in a game that featured 12 pitchers between the two clubs.

J.T. Williamson had a career-high three hits for Auburn.  Clemson third baseman Brad McCann was 4-for-5 with four RBI and three runs to pace the Tigers.

The two teams will play Saturday beginning at 2 p.m. ET at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.

Clemson 14, Auburn 9 (Mar 12, 2004 at Clemson, S.C.)
Auburn.............. 000 004 410  -  9 11  1      (14-2)
Clemson............. 114 211 13X  - 14 13  2      (6-5)