CLEMSON, S.C. — Clemson Softball’s Valerie Cagle (Yorktown, Va.) and McKenzie Clark (Myakka City, Fla.) have been named National FastPitch Coaches Association (NFCA) All-Region Southeast, the organization announced on Thursday. Cagle was crowned First Team selection as a utility/pitcher, while Clark was tabbed a Second Team recipient as an outfielder. Both Cagle and Clark guided Clemson to its first ACC regular-season championship and an appearance in the 2021 ACC Championship game in its first opportunities to do so.
NFCA Release || 2021 D1 All-Region Teams
Cagle was the first player in ACC history to garner both Player-of-the-Year honors, while also claiming the league’s Freshman of the Year award. She was also named a USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year Top 10 Finalist and an NFCA Freshman of the Year Top 15 Finalist. She was also the only player in the nation to earn both NFCA Player and Pitcher-of-the-Week honors. The second-year freshman currently leads the ACC in ERA (1.06), wins (26) and saves (5), and is second in innings pitched (197.2) and batters struck out (247). Cagle is also one of just two pitchers in the nation to pitch at least 175.0 innings with a 1.06 ERA or better. In the batter’s box, Cagle leads the ACC in slugging percentage (.821), second in home runs (15), third in batting average (.414) and on-base percentage (.500), and tied for third in RBI (41) and doubles (11). Cagle currently has eight games under her belt this season in which she has recorded at least one home run and earned the win as Clemson’s pitcher. All of her wins while homering have been complete games, including three shutout wins over Boston College (April 18) and at South Carolina (April 21) and Virginia Tech (May 14). Cagle also orchestrated a 23-game hit streak – a program record – which began on March 27 and ended on May 15 in the Tigers’ ACC Championship game.
Clark, true freshman, was a First Team All-ACC selection and a member of the ACC’s All-Freshman Team. The Tigers’ leadoff hitter currently leads the ACC in runs scored (45), is second in the ACC in triples (6) and sixth in stolen bases (21). A dynamic two-way player like Cagle, Clark has started at centerfield in all but one game, and has four assists from the outfield.
Up next, the Tigers (42-6) take Troy (36-15) on Friday at 3 p.m. ET in the opening contest of the Tuscaloosa Regional. Friday’s game is slated to stream on ESPN3.
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