Tigers earn highest ranked win in program history

Tigers take down (11)Duke on Saturday, 4-1.
Tigers take down (11)Duke on Saturday, 4-1.(Patrick Boling/Clemson University Athletics)
Published: Mar. 27, 2021 at 5:00 PM EDT
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CLEMSON, S.C. — The 20th-ranked Clemson Softball team (21-4, 13-4) snapped No. 11 Duke’s 20-game win streak, the second-longest active winning streak among all NCAA Division-I softball programs nationwide, with a 4-1 win at McWhorter Stadium Saturday afternoon. Claiming its third ranked win all-time, the Tigers secured their highest-ranked win in school history.

Right-handed pitcher Valerie Cagle (13-3) earned the win in the circle, while Duke’s Peyton St George suffered her first loss of the season (11-1). St George’s loss was her first since Feb. 28, 2020 in a 6-2 decision against Notre Dame. It was also the last time - prior today - in which she surrendered at least four earned runs.

The Tigers jumped out to an early lead in the bottom of the first with a two-run shot to centerfield from Cagle, which scored leadoff hitter McKenzie Clark, who finished Saturday’s contest 3-for-3 at the plate with a pair of doubles. Cagle’s homer marked her seventh of the season as Cagle also collected her 20th and 21st RBIs.

Extending Clemson’s lead to 4-0, Clark ripped a two-RBI double right over the left fielder in the bottom of the second to score Alia Logoleo and pinch runner Carlee Shannon. Clark’s pair of RBIs in Saturday’s contest gave her 12 RBIs this season, good for third most on the team.

In the top of the fifth, the Blue Devils brought in a run with an RBI-single up the middle to cut the Tigers’ lead to 4-1.

Cagle and Clemson’s defense were exceptional in the field with Duke runners in scoring position, holding the Blue Devils offense to just one run while they stranded seven base runners.

Up next, the Tigers and Duke return to McWhorter Stadium on Sunday to round out the four-game series. First pitch of Sunday’s series finale is set for 4 p.m. on ACC Network.

For complete coverage of the Tiger softball team, follow @ClemsonSoftball on Twitter and Instagram and Facebook.

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