CLEMSON -- In the middle of the fourth inning Sunday, Clemson baseball coach Jack Leggett huddled his Tigers in the first-base dugout for a rare timeout of sorts, a chance to rebuke and refocus like one might see on the sidelines during March Madness.
The frustration had been building for some time.
The Tigers entered Sunday's series finale against Boston College, losers of six of their last eight games. Clemson trailed Boston College by three runs in the fourth, in danger of losing a series to a sub-.500 Boston College club.
The influence of impassioned speech can be debated, but Clemson responded by twice overcoming deficits for a 14-9 series-clinching win.
No. 16 Clemson (20-8, 9-3 ACC) also avoided its fifth home loss in six games, a stretch of futility on friendly ground occurring only twice at Clemson since 1948.
"There wasn't too much PG to it," said Leggett of his fourth-inning lecture. "It's one of those things where we had to try get their attention a little bit, try to get ourselves back on track."
The common thread during the Tigers' recent downturn was the absence of timely hitting.
Clemson hitting coach Tom Riginos said he could tell Clemson batters were pressing due to the amount of balls being beaten into the infield turf, a symptom of trying to do too much with the bat.
While Clemson showed some offensive life Friday, the Tigers left 26 runners on base in their last three games.
Before Leggett delivered his message in the fourth, Riginos offered another prior to Sunday's game: relax.
The Tigers awoke from their clutch woes in the eighth inning, batting around for eight runs to take a 14-8 lead.
John Hinson went 3 for 5 on Sunday with 3 RBIs, including a critical hit in the eighth-inning surge. Hinson said Clemson batters had been pressing, but a recovery was inevitable, it was simply just a lull, "just baseball."
The Tigers' defense also improved over the weekend, errorless for the entire series, though Leggett's fourth-inning huddle was sparked by a mental error.
Boston College's Matt Watson scored from second on a third to first putout in the top half of the fourth. Clemson catcher John Nester covered third, leaving home plate vacant, and the Clemson infield failed to ask for time. Watson noticed his opening and sprinted from third to home to give the Eagles a 4-1 lead.
While the offense overcame the deficit even without slugger Kyle Parker, who remains out with a sore back, the bullpen continues to struggle.
The Clemson relief corps blew its second lead of the week Sunday.
Clemson starter Scott Weisman left with the lead after six innings of work, allowing four runs, six hits and three walks while striking out six.
In the seventh, Leggett allowed the right-handed Jonathan Meyer to face the left-handed heart of the Boston College lineup.
The left-handed Mickey Wiswall laced an opposite field RBI single to left off Meyer, and the left-handed cleanup hitter John Spatola followed with a two-run double.
Pitching coach Dan Pepicelli said the Tigers don't have a left-handed reliever they trust at the moment.
"There are a couple things we can do from the right side," Pepicelli said, "using a changeup (which bears toward lefties) and some other things. ... (The left-handed relievers) are inexperienced."
Leggett replaced Meyer with the left-handed Kevin Kyle who hit a batter and then replaced Kyle with David Haselden as Boston College (12-15, 4-8) held an 8-5 lead.
Pepicelli said the Tigers have found a closer in Haselden.
The Tigers were without three starting position players Sunday: Parker, freshman Richie Shaffer and Jason Stolz. While Parker is expected back for Tuesday's game at Georgia, Leggett said Shaffer (hamstring) is not close to returning.