Tigers rally past Georgia State in thrilling walkoff victory

Tigers rally past Georgia State in thrilling walkoff victory


Tigers rally past Georgia State in thrilling walkoff victory


Despite falling behind early, Clemson showed up with a big ninth inning rally highlighted by sophomore Billy Amick’s first career grand slam to overtake the Georgia State Panthers on Friday afternoon by a score of 9-8 at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.

“Thrilling victory,” head coach Erik Bakich said. “So proud and happy for our guys to not quit, to keep fighting, to learn that great lesson that they’re never out of the fight and you just gotta keep believing. … Very proud of the guys and the fight. This is one we’ll remember for a long time.”

The Tigers’ top third of the lineup was a bright spot en route to the eventual victory, with Cam Cannarella, Cooper Ingle and Will Taylor going a combined 13-for-16 at the plate with four runs, three RBIs, one double and one homer.

Clemson’s Nick Hoffman earned the win while Georgia State righthander Zach Ottinger tallied the loss for the Panthers.

After a scoreless first inning for both ball clubs, Georgia State got on the board first thanks to a pair of back-to-back homers, both hit to deep left, off the bats of infielders Dylan Strickland and Luke Boynton to give the Panthers the early 2-0 lead in the second.

Georgia State struck yet again with its third bomb of the day in the third – a two-run bomb hit by shortstop Matt Ruiz, extending the Panthers’ lead to 4-0.

Clemson finally came up with its answer in the third. With the bases loaded and one out, shortstop Benjamin Blackwell reached on a fielder’s choice to second base that scored Cannarella from third. Despite loading the bases for a second time in the same inning, the Tigers were unable to plate more runs while leaving three runners stranded in the process. Clemson trailed 4-1 after three.

Into the fourth, Georgia State extended its lead following two back-to-back RBI singles for Cameron Jones and Max Ryerson to score Boynton and Dalton Pearson respectively. The Tigers were able to tack on another run of their own later in the inning thanks to Ingle’s clutch RBI double down the right field line to score Cannarella, but still trailed by a score of 6-2 through four.

The Panthers continued to bring the power at the plate with the team’s fourth homer of the day as well as Boynton’s second — a two-run bomb sent out to left that scored JoJo Jackson to extend Georgia State’s lead over Clemson to 8-2.

After a scoreless sixth and seventh inning, Clemson was able to bring in two more runs off the bat of Ingle. With a runner on first, Ingle hit a two-run homer to deep right to score Cannarella for the catcher’s fourth deep ball of the year.

Clemson sealed the deal in the ninth thanks to Amick’s monster home run to center field with the bases loaded that gave the Tigers the eventual 9-8 victory over the Panthers.

“It was very exciting,” Amick said regarding his walkoff grand slam. “I’m just glad we got the win. Pitching staff did great holding it down, giving us a chance to get that big inning in the ninth. I’m just really glad we came back, showed the fight and got the win.”

Next up, the Tigers conclude the series with a doubleheader against Georgia State on Saturday, March 11, at Doug Kingsmore Stadium. First pitch is set for 1 p.m. with the second game of the doubleheader scheduled to begin one hour after the conclusion of the first game. Both games will be broadcasted on ACCNX.



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