CLEMSON SOFTBALL

Millie Thompson scattered seven hits with four strikeouts over a complete game. (Clemson athletics photo)
Millie Thompson scattered seven hits with four strikeouts over a complete game. (Clemson athletics photo)

Duke clinches series over No. 19 Tigers


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No. 19-ranked Clemson softball doubled up Duke in runners left on base, and a late defensive miscue gave the Blue Devils – ranked as high as No. 1 in the nation — the advantage to clinch the series with a 4-3 win.

Like in Friday’s 13-9 Blue Devils win, Duke (35-3, 15-2 ACC) did its first damage in the third inning.

A pair of one-out singles preceded a three-run home run by Claire Davidson to center field. Clemson left-handed starter Millie Thompson (5-5) had allowed just one hit with three strikeouts in the previous two frames.

The Tigers answered back to tie things up in the bottom half of the third. McKenzie Clark dropped an RBI single in right field, Maddie Moore scored on a wild pitch, and with the bases loaded, Alia Logoleo snuck a hit past the shortstop to tie up the game.

Clemson (28-13, 11-6 ACC) put two on with one out in the fifth inning and advanced both into scoring position with a wild pitch, but Duke’s Jala Wright (13-1) notched a strikeout and then a flyout from Logoleo to strand the Clemson runners. In the sixth, a Lindsey Garcia leadoff double was left stranded on third, bringing the total to six left on for the afternoon.

Disaster struck in the field for the Tigers in the top half of the sixth, with Duke taking back the lead after a single and that runner moving all the way around the bases after Thompson and Logoleo collided fielding a following sac bunt and Thompson firing to first for the out but a throwing error on Alex Brown to third allowing the run to score.

Clemson went down in order in the seventh inning, for Lillie Walker to pick up her third save this season.

Thompson scattered seven hits with four strikeouts and no walks over a complete game.

Clemson honored ten seniors on Saturday, with some from the initial signing classes for the program that began playing in 2020: Lindsey Garcia, Julia Bomhardt, McKenzie Clark, Grace Hiller, Alia Logoleo, Regan Spencer, JoJo Hyatt, Arielle Oda, Valerie Cagle, and Millie Thompson. Cagle missed a fourth game in a row while sitting out due to concussion protocol.

Duke improved to 9-3 versus Clemson all-time. The series win was the Blue Devils' 10th in a row overall.

The series concludes with a 6 p.m. start on Sunday (ACCN).


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