ATLANTA, Ga. – Behind home runs from Valerie Cagle, Alia Logoleo and Maddie Moore, the No. 5/5 Clemson Tigers captured the first game against Georgia Tech, 9-1, in only five innings of play on Friday evening at Mewborn Field. Following the win, Clemson improves to 30-1 (7-0 ACC) to become the first program in 2023 to reach the 30-win mark, while the Yellow Jackets fall to 16-13 (2-5 ACC).
Clemson tallied eight hits and seven walks. Cagle, Logoleo and Moore all tallied two hits with McKenzie Clark and Ally Miklesh tallying one hit each. Logoleo brought home a team-high four RBIs, while Cagle followed with two.
Clemson wasted no time getting runs on the board in the top of the first inning. After Moore drew a four-pitch walk, Cagle blasted her ninth home run of the year out of center field. The momentum continued as Caroline Jacobsen notched a seven-pitch walk to allow Logoleo to repeat the process with a two-run shot out of left center, her fourth of the season. Action continued in the first as Clemson got runners on first and second with back-to-back walks, and Miklesh hit one up the middle to score Julia Bomhardt, who was pinch running for Aby Vieira.
The Yellow Jackets answered with one of their own in the bottom of the first after the leadoff batter made it around to score. The Tigers responded in the top of the second as Moore hit her seventh homer of the season with a solo blast out of center to make it 6-1 after two.
Georgia Tech loaded the bases with two outs in the bottom of the third inning with hopes of closing in on the Tigers’ lead, but it was no use as Moore fielded one cleanly at second and made the easy tag for the final out. In the top of the fourth, Clemson loaded the bases with the top of the order all getting on. Logoleo notched her second hit of the day with a two-RBI double into deep left that plated Clark and Moore to push Clemson’s lead to 8-1.
The Tigers put the final touches on the run-rule win in the top of the fifth as Arielle Oda led off with her second walk of the night. She quickly stole second to be in scoring position for Clark to hit a single up the middle to plate the ninth run of the game. The Yellow Jackets made a push in the bottom of the fifth getting two runners on, but Clemson shut things down to secure the 9-1 run-rule victory.
Cagle started in the circle for the Tigers and threw four innings with nine strikeouts to earn her 14th win on the year. She was replaced in the bottom of the fifth by sophomore Brooke McCubbin.
Clemson continues action against Georgia Tech tomorrow, March 25, at 6 p.m.