It was only the second time Gardner-Webb (28-16-1) has been shut out in 2011, with the last occasion coming on February 22 against Appalachian State.
The 'Dogs dropped their third game in a row - with all three coming against ranked teams from the Atlantic Coast Conference this week - part of a brutal four-game stretch that concludes Sunday at 2:00 pm against Clemson at home in Boiling Springs.
A five-run burst with two outs in the fourth inning for the Tigers (31-15) put the game away, and righty Jonathan Meyer was sharp on the mound for 6.1 shutout innings to keep the Runnin' Bulldogs quiet at the plate.
The Tigers collected four singles to score two runs in the bottom of the first, with John Hinson leading off with a hit, stealing second and later scoring on a wild pitch. Consecutive singles from Richie Shaffer, Jeff Schaus and Will Lamb gave Clemson its second run of the game, before GWU starter Erik Heiligenstadt could work out of the early jam.
Back-to-back singles with two outs in the bottom of the third pushed Clemson's lead to 3-0, and Brad Miller's two-run double with two outs in the fourth made the score 5-0. Shaffer then cleared the stadium seats one batter later with a two-run home run to left that effectively put the game out of reach. Lamb doubled in another run to make it 8-0, but was throw out after slipping between second and third trying to leg out a triple.
Clemson added single runs in the fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth for the final margin
The Tigers collected a season-high 20 hits in the game, with Shaus (4-for-4), Hinson (3-for-5) and Shaffer (3-for-4) leading the charge. Meyer (5-1) picked up the win in his fourth start of the season, as the Tigers used four pitchers for the combined shutout.
Gardner-Webb had five hits in the game, with five different players collecting one hit apiece. Heiligenstadt (3-4) took the loss in his second start of the week, allowing eight runs in 4.0 innings of work.
The two teams will play the third game of the series Sunday afternoon at 2:00 pm in Boiling Springs, N.C., at John Henry Moss Stadium / Bill Masters Field. Gates open at 12:30 pm, and Gardner-Webb fans are encouraged to wear red as part of a scheduled "Red Out" promotion. Sunday's game will air live on WGWG-FM (88.3), Gardner-Webb's 50,000-watt flagship station, with Fabian Fuentes calling the action.