CLEMSON SOFTBALL

Clemson will need to win four games in a row to get out of the Tuscaloosa Regional. (file photo)
Clemson will need to win four games in a row to get out of the Tuscaloosa Regional. (file photo)

2-seed Tigers upset in NCAA Regional opener


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John Rittman's Tigers are up against the odds now in Tuscaloosa.

The second-seeded Clemson softball team (34-18) was upset by the third-seeded Southeastern Louisiana Lady Lions (46-13) in the NCAA Tournament regional opener on Friday, 6-2.

The Tigers will face 4-seed USC Upstate at 2:00 p.m. EDT Saturday and will need to win another game Saturday evening to make the regional final.

Per ESPN, only three percent of teams that lost their first game in this NCAA Tournament softball format have gone on to the Super Regionals (2005-on). The Tigers have made the Super Regional round two seasons in a row.

The Lady Lions struck first in the third inning with a Maria Detillier two-run single to the right side, and after she stole second base, Detillier made her way home on a Bailey Krolczyk single to right center. After another hit surrendered, that marked the end of Valerie Cagle’s start after 2 2/3 innings, giving up seven hits and three earned runs with three strikeouts and a walk. She dropped to 8-7 on the season.

Clemson’s lineup stranded two in scoring position twice before Southeastern Louisiana got on the scoreboard, Lady Lions right-handed pitcher Ellie DuBois registered her first 1-2-3 frame in the third inning after her team scored. DuBois kept the Tigers limited to two hits through four innings.

The Lady Lions added to their lead in the fifth inning, facing Millie Thompson, first with a Lexi Johnson RBI single to center field and then a Audrey Greely hotshot that deflected off Cagle’s glove at first base and scored two more.

In the bottom of the fifth, Clemson broke through with an RBI grounder from Maddie Moore, but the count stretched to six left on base for the Tigers after a Cagle groundout.

Aby Vieira cut into the lead with an RBI single in the sixth inning, but again, the stranded runners count upped two Tigers to eight on the day.


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