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Clearwater, Fla. – No. 18/15 Clemson softball team upset No. 6/5 Washington in shutout fashion on the final day of the St. Pete/Clearwater Elite Invitational. The Tigers scored two runs to hand the Huskies their first loss of the 2022 season and pick up the first top-10 victory in program history.
Redshirt sophomore Valerie Cagle shined in the circle and at the plate for the Tigers to propel Clemson to victory striking out 10 batters and hitting a solo-home run in the sixth inning to extend Clemson’s lead.
In an all-out pitcher’s duel between Cagle and Washington’s Gabbie Plain, the Tigers came out on top finishing with five hits as the Huskies only tallied four.
Action began for both programs in the second inning as Washington got runners in scoring position, but Clemson’s defense shut things down to keep the Huskies off the board.
The Tigers responded with Marissa Guimbarda leading off the second with a double into deep right center and was replaced by Maddie Moore as a runner. Two outs later, redshirt sophomore Alia Logoleo stepped to the plate and drove a single into left field to score Moore and give Clemson the lead.
Aby Vieira and Arielle Oda kept things going for Clemson with back-to-back singles. In an attempt to double the lead, Logoleo was sent home on Oda’s single but was ruled out at home plate for the final out of the inning. The pitcher’s duel would continue following this inning for the remainder of the game as neither Cagle or Plain allowed more than five batters to step to the plate in a half inning.
Cagle took advantage of her opportunity at the plate though and sent a two-out solo homer on a 1-0 count out of left field to double the Tiger’s lead in the sixth. The Yorktown, Va. native capped the game in the top of the seventh with a final strikeout to seal the upset victory, 2-0.
Following the win, Cagle moves to 4-2 in the circle as the Tigers improve to 6-3 on the season.
Clemson hits the road for a midweek game at Charlotte on Wednesday, Feb. 23 at 4 p.m. before opening the 2022 home slate in McWhorter Stadium on Friday, Feb. 25 at 2:30 p.m.