GREENVILLE, S.C. â€“ The Michigan State baseball team lost its first game of the season Sunday afternoon as sixth-ranked Clemson defeated the Spartans, 8-0, in the First Pitch Invitational at Fluor Field.
The Tigers, who advanced to the College World Series last season, collected 12 hits and jumped out to a 4-0 lead after four innings. Clemson first baseman Richie Shaffer hit a solo homer in the eighth, and the Tigers (5-1) added three more runs in the ninth to go up, 8-0.
Michigan State (5-1), off to its best five-game start since 1964, was limited to four hits in the contest. Jeff Holm doubled in the second, Brandon Eckerle doubled in the sixth, and Jordan Keur went 2-for-3. Eckerle now has a hit in every game this season and is hitting .696 (16-for-23).
Kevin Brady (2-0) earned the win for Clemson, striking out nine and giving up just four hits in seven innings of work. Andrew Waszak (1-1) took the loss for MSU, as he surrendered four runs and six hits in five innings.
The Spartans return to action next week as they begin an eight-game spring trip to Florida. MSU opens up against SIU-Edwardsville Friday, March 4 in Daytona Beach, Fla., at 3 p.m. for the Bethune-Cookman Invitational.