UCF Knocks Off Clemson to Sweep Tigers

Willie Weiss Jason Priester All Clemson

CLEMSON, S.C.- UCF completed a three-game weekend sweep of Clemson by knocking off the Tigers 13-6 on Sunday. It was the first time Clemson was swept at home since May of 2021, when Duke pulled off the feat.

For the second straight game, untimely miscues cost Clemson, as five of the Knights’ runs were of the unearned variety, with all five coming in the same inning. None of those miscues were bigger than Ty Olenchuk’s throwing error in the seventh.

With the score tied at 6-6 and the bases loaded with two outs, UCF’s Corey Robinson laid down a bunt. Olenchuk fielded the ball moving towards third base, turned and then airmailed the throw, allowing two runs to score. A few pitches later, he uncorked a wild pitch, allowing another run to score to give UCF a three-run lead. The Knights would tack on two more before the inning finally came to an end.

“Just a disappointing weekend overall,” head coach Erik Bakich said. “Mostly in just the way we played. We just let each game slip away, late.”

The Tigers just could not come up with the big hit when needed, going just 3-of-16 with runners in scoring position, stranding 10 runners in the process.

Jay Dill got the start for Clemson, but would not make it out of the fourth inning, allowing five runs on five hits in just 3.1 innings of work. Sophomore Billy Barlow also made his first appearance of the season, pitching a scoreless ninth in relief.

“That’s a good offensive team,” Bakich said. “They take big, aggressive swings. Unfortunately, for us, we just didn’t have those answers in the bullpen late.”

After winning their first four games under Bakich, Clemson has now dropped three straight, falling 4-3 on the young season.

Player of the Game: Will Taylor led the way for Clemson, going 2-for-4 at the plate with two doubles and two RBI. He also drew a walk and scored a run.

Key Moment: No moment was bigger than that seventh inning when the Knights loaded the bases with nobody out. Olenchuk struck out consecutive hitters swinging for the first two outs, then appeared to be out of the jam when he fielded the bunt from Robinson. The throwing error was a huge momentum swing that took the air out of the fans inside the stadium.

Stat of the Game: Clemson pitching allowed five unearned runs in the contest, all coming in that crucial seventh inning.

Up Next: Clemson will face USC-Upstate in Greenville on Tuesday at Fluor Field. First pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m.

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