CLEMSON SOFTBALL

McKenzie Clark scored two runs and notched two RBIs in the win. (Clemson athletics photo)
McKenzie Clark scored two runs and notched two RBIs in the win. (Clemson athletics photo)

5-seed Tigers pull away from 4-seed Cavaliers, advance to ACC semis


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The fifth-seeded Clemson softball team (34-16) advanced to the ACC Softball tournament semifinals with an 8-1 win over fourth-seeded Virginia (32-18) on Thursday at Duke Softball Stadium.

The Tigers, ranked as high as No. 21 nationally, take on the hosts Duke at 1 p.m. on Friday (ACCN), which won in extra-innings over Boston College.

The first four Tigers reached in the first inning, but Clemson only scratched across one run to start the game.

After the Tigers chased Virginia starter Courtney Layne (2-2) in the second inning, Clemson’s Alex Brown knocked through an RBI single to take a 2-0 lead. By the fourth inning, however, the Tigers had tallied nine runners left on base despite six hits, three walks and a hit batter.

Clemson right-hander Regan Spencer (10-3) didn’t give up a hit until the fourth inning, but Virginia’s Sarah Coon cut the lead in half with an RBI single in the fourth frame.

After loading up the bases in the fifth inning, McKenzie Clark got the run back with a sac fly RBI to center, and Brown notched her second run-producing single of the day for two more RBIs to make it 5-1.

Clark tacked onto the lead in the seventh with an RBI double off the left-field wall. With the bases loaded and no out, Cagle broke things open with a two-run single up the middle.

Brown tallied three hits on the day.

Spencer went the distance for a fourth complete game of the season with three strikeouts and two hits allowed over the seven innings.


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