NO.10 CLEMSON SURVIVES SCARE 9-8 IN WILD FINISH AT VA TECH
- 2023-05-16 12:57:18
What a crazy game! Unlike Friday's contest, this was a tight one in Blacksburg. The Hokies took a 1-0 lead on a leadoff HR off Gordon in the 2nd, but the Tigers once again responded in the next inning with 4 runs. The Hokies scored 2 runs off Gordon in the 4th to make it 4-3, and Taylor threw a runner out at the plate from left field to preserve the lead. However, Gordon gave up a double and a single to start the 6th and tie the game.
The game remained tied 4-4 going into the 9th, when Cannarella led off with a double, and the Tigers rallied to score 5 runs and take a 9-4 lead. I posted that I would save Ammons for Sunday because Clayton had settled in and they had a 5-run lead. However, Bakich decided to go ahead and start the 9th with Ammons on the mound, and the Tigers' reliable closer uncharacteristically laid an egg, giving up a leadoff single on full count and back-to-back homers to make it 9-7. Bakich brought in Hughes from the pen, and after striking out his firs batter, he gave up back-to-back singles. With runners at the corners and the winning run at the plate with one out, Smith came in from the pen. He gave up a double to make it 9-8 with runners on 2nd and 3rd with one out. After intentionally walking the next batter to load the bases with one out, the Hokies had the tying run on 3rd and the winning run on 2nd. The intentional walk paid off because a chopper up the middle gave the Tigers a game-ending double play ball. However, the runner at 1st was safe by a split second, and the Hokies seemingly tied the game, but interference was called on the runner colliding with Bertram at 2nd, and thus the Tigers survived with the 9-8 win!
I don't know if I've ever seen a game end that way, and the Tigers avoided disaster by the skin of their teeth, but when you're on a hot streak, you seem to get those kinds of breaks! Taylor remained red-hot, going 3-4 with a walk, and he drove in the go-ahead run in the 9th. Amick was 2-5 with 2 more doubles, Cannarella was 2-5 and Bertram was 1-2 with 3 walks. Gordon got yet another no-decision, and Clayton improved to 6-0 out of the pen. Smith picked up his 3rd save.
The Tigers have now won two straight one-run games after losing their previous 5. They've won 12 of their last 13 and clinched their 6th straight ACC series. They will go for their 3rd sweep in the last 4 ACC series on Sunday at 3:00!
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