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Mar 08, 2024

Thompson Leads Tigers Past Bears

CLEMSON, S.C. – Senior Millie Thompson pitched 5.0 strong innings, striking out a season-high eight batters without allowing a walk or an earned run as No. 10/11 Clemson (15-6) defeated Mercer, 7-2, in the Clemson Invitational. Aby Vieira and Valerie Cagle each drove in a pair of runs and Maddie Moore hit her fourth home run of the season to propel the Tiger offense. 

Thompson picked up her 40th career win in the effort, which also marked the fourth time in her career she struck out eight or more batters without conceding a walk. 

Offensively, the Tigers tallied a pair of triples in the first two innings, the fourth time the Tigers have accomplished the feat in a single game and the first since Feb. 17, 2022.

Mercer (8-11) took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first with an unearned run off Thompson, who struck out three batters in the frame.

The Tigers wasted little time responding, loading the bases with one out in the bottom of the inning after Alex Brown led off with a triple, McKenzie Clark was hit by a pitch and Alia Logoleo walked. With two outs, freshman Kylee Johnson drew a walk to score Brown, and Vieira singled up the middle to score Clark and Logoleo and give the Tigers a 3-1 lead after one.

Clemson upped the lead to 5-1 in the second inning as Cagle ripped her fifth career triple down the right field line, scoring Brown, who had singled, and Clark, who had walked. The Bears added one back in the top of the third off a throwing error attempting to catch a runner stealing to make it 5-2 after three.

Moore struck next in the fifth inning with a 237-foot blast to right-center field, her fourth longball of the season. The next batter, Johnson, doubled and would later score on Haylee Whitesides’ sac fly to give the Tigers a 7-2 advantage, marking Whitesides’ first career RBI. Jadeyn Ruszkowski picked up her first hit of the season in the bottom of the sixth, but was stranded on first. 

Freshman lefty Olivia Duncan made her third career appearance in the circle to begin the top of the sixth and allowed just one baserunner in 2.0 innings in closing out the game. 

Up Next

The Tigers continue action at the Tiger Invitational tomorrow evening at 6 p.m. against Longwood in the third game of the day following matchups including Fordham, Minnesota, Longwood and Mercer. Tournament central full schedule is available here.  Action can be watched live on ACCNX, and tickets for all action in McWhorter Stadium are still available both online and at the gate on every gameday. 

Any changes to Saturday’s schedule due to weather will be available @ClemsonSoftball on X and at