Tigers beat Billikens to avoid elimination

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COLUMBIA — Steve Wilkerson hit two homers and drove in five runs to lead Clemson to a 10-2 victory over Saint Louis, eliminating the Atlantic 10 Tournament champions from the Columbia Regional on Saturday.

Clemson's Steve Wilkerson (right) is greeted at home plate by teammates after hitting a three-run homer during the fourth inning of Saturday's victory over Saint Louis in the Columbia Regional.  MARY ANN CHASTAIN/ASSOCIATED PRESS
MARY ANN CHASTAIN/ASSOCIATED PRESS
Clemson's Steve Wilkerson (right) is greeted at home plate by teammates after hitting a three-run homer during the fourth inning of Saturday's victory over Saint Louis in the Columbia Regional.

The Tigers (40-21) snapped a six-game losing streak and will face either Liberty or rival South Carolina in an elimination game Sunday. Clemson avoided its first 0-2 NCAA regional since 1981.

Wilkerson was a big reason why. He put the Tigers ahead with a two-run blast to right in the third inning and added a three-run homer in the fourth that gave Clemson a 6-1 lead.

Shane Kennedy added a solo homer for Clemson. Daniel Gossett (10-4) gave up five hits and two runs in six innings to pick up the victory.

The Billikens (41-21) have lost nine consecutive NCAA Tournament games since reaching the College World Series in 1965.

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