WRIGHT HITS WALK-OFF SINGLE, NO.6 CLEMSON BEATS UNC 5-4 FOR 11TH STRAIGHT WIN, CLINCHING 7TH STRAIGHT ACC SERIES
- 2023-05-21 09:17:05
CLEMSON, SC - The Tigers hung 14 runs on the Heels to open the series on Thursday night, but the runs would be harder to come by on Friday, and Gordon got off to a rocky start on the mound. Perhaps the Heels built a little momentum with their 4-run 9th on Thursday, and they capitalized on that with a 3-run HR in the 2nd to take the early lead. Fortunately, Crighton threw a runner out from right field after a single, or it would have been a grand slam.
The Tigers responded with 3 runs of their own in the 3rd, once again with 2 outs. Grice was hit by a pitch with bases loaded, and Amick hit a 2-out single for 2 more to tie the game. Cannarella hit a sac fly in the 4th to give the Tigers their first lead at 4-3, and that should have been enough to win the game because Gordon settled in, and Smith and Garris combined for 3 scoreless innings in relief.
However, Ammons came in to pitch the 9th, and just like his outing in Blacksburg last week, things got a little crazy. This time, however, it wasn't his fault. The Tigers lost two consecutive infield flies in the lights to start the inning. After the second one, fortunately, Bertram made a heads up play and threw the runner out at 2nd. After another pop-up, this time a foul caught for the 2nd out by Wright, the Tigers lost yet another shallow fly in the lights that dropped for a double! That tied the game 4-4, and Ammons must have been beside himself. I've never seen anything like it! Ammons did a great job getting 4 consecutive shallow pop flies, and the Tigers should have been celebrating a win, but instead, the game was tied with the go-ahead run on 2nd. Ammons intentionally walked the next batter and was able to get a fly that was finally caught in play to end the inning, but the game was extended to the bottom of the 9th.
To their credit, the Tigers didn't dwell on the bizarre events for long. After Grice walked on full count and Amick was hit by a pitch, Blake Wright, who was 3-4 with 2 HR's on Thursday, came to the plate with 2 outs. He ripped a walk-off single to left field for the 5-4 win!
The Tigers have now won 3 straight one-run games after losing their previous 5. They have won 11 straight and 16 of 17, clinching their 7th straight ACC series and the second-best record in the ACC! They'll go for their 3rd straight sweep to finish the regular season on Saturday at 1:00 on ACCN.
Post-game interviews are below!
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