Photos by Alana McCallion, Clemson Athletics
CLEMSON, S.C. — The Clemson Softball team combined for 10 runs in the bottom of the third and fourth innings in game No. 2 of Friday’s doubleheader as the Tigers went on to defeat North Carolina, 12-1, to clinch the series at McWhorter Stadium. Clemson’s 12 runs scored are the most by the Tigers in any game this season. Clemson redshirt-freshman infielder Kyah Keller had the best outing of her career after finishing the game 3-for-3 at the plate with a pair of home runs and four RBIs.
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Clemson’s Valerie Cagle (15-3) earned the win in the circle for the Tigers after pitching 4.0 innings during which she collected eight strikeouts.
Grace Mattimore’s first home run as a Tiger put Clemson on the board in the bottom of the first inning. The next inning, Keller, who started game No. 2 at first base for the Tigers, connected on her first career home run to give Clemson a 2-0 lead.
The Tigers piled on six runs in the bottom of the third, an offensive spree that was highlighted by Cammy Pereira’s 3-RBI triple, which gave Clemson a 7-0 lead.
After Clemson added one more run in the bottom of the third, North Carolina posted its only run of the game on an RBI-single to left field. However, the Tigers weren’t done yet as Clemson added four more runs in the bottom half of the inning. Ansley Gilstrap, who finished the game 2-for-2, registered an RBI-single to give Clemson a 9-1 lead. Two batters later, Keller crushed her second homer of the day on a three-run shot to centerfield.
Regan Spencer entered in relief of Cagle in the top of the fifth and retired all three batters faced.
North Carolina’s Katie Grace Olinger (0-2) suffered the loss after 2.0 innings pitched.
Up next, Clemson and the Tar Heels return to McWhorter Stadium for the four-game series finale on Saturday at noon. Saturday’s contest is slated to stream on ACCNX.
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