DURHAM, N.C. - Another first in Duke softball history was recorded on Friday night, as the Blue Devils (10-6) reeled off the first walk-off win in program history to defeat the Yale Bulldogs (0-6), 4-3, to close out the first day of the Duke Inaugural Tournament.
Duke opened up the day falling 10-4 to North Dakota State (6-5) before rallying to defeat the Bulldogs in the day's final contest. A wild pitch would give the Blue Devils a 1-0 lead in the opening frame against the Bison before NDSU posted one in the second and exploded for five runs in the fourth.
The Blue Devils responded in the bottom of the fourth thanks to RBI singles from Reilly Metzger and Rachel Abboud, along with a sac fly from Jameson Kavel. However, the Bison tacked on three more in the fifth and one final run in the seventh to close out the contest.
Despite the loss, Duke received a solid showing from Abboud, who turned in a 3-for-4 day at the plate with a run batted in and a double, giving her the fifth multi-hit game of the year. Duke also received hits from Jazmine Moreno, Raine Wilson and Metzger, while Kavel and Metzger joined Abboud in tallying an RBI.
The Blue Devils opened up with a 1-0 lead in the first before Yale reeled off three in the second to take the lead in their second game. After several attempts to break back into the contest, the Blue Devils put two runs on the board in the sixth thanks to Jill Ferraro's first-career home run and an RBI single from Brianna Butler that scored Raine Wilson to tie things up.
The final blow came in the ninth with the international tiebreaker rules in effect. Moreno opened the frame on second and was moved to third on a sac bunt from Abboud. Katherine Huey singled and Ferraro reached on a fielder's choice to load the bases. From there, Amelia Wiercioch put the ball in play and Moreno beat the throw home to seal the victory.
Three Blue Devils tallied multi-hit showings, with Kavel, Moreno and Ferraro each earning a pair of hits. For the game, Duke earned four extra-base hits with three doubles and Ferraro's homer. In the circle, Peyton St. George earned the start, throwing 4.0 innings of work and fanning five. Wiercioch recorded 4.1 innings of relief work before giving way to Huey, who closed down the game to move to 6-2 on the year.
After splitting day one, the Blue Devils will have one contest Saturday, taking on Lehigh at 3:30 p.m. ET. The contest will be live streamed on ACC Network Extra, which fans can access through WatchESPN.com and the ESPN app.
For more information on Duke softball, follow the Blue Devils on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram by searching for “DukeSoftball”. You can also find all-access coverage of all Duke athletic programs on SnapChat by searching for “dukeathletics”.
2018 Duke Inaugural Tournament Schedule…
Friday, March 2
Game 1 – Kent State def. Lehigh, 8-6
Game 2 – Kent State def. Yale, 3-2
Game 3 – North Dakota State def. 10-4
Game 4 – Duke def. Yale, 4-3 (9)
Saturday, March 3
Game 5 – Yale vs. Lehigh – 10:30 a.m.
Game 6 – Yale vs. North Dakota State – 1:00 p.m.
Game 7 – Duke vs. Lehigh – 3:30 p.m.
Game 8 – Kent State vs. North Dakota State – 6:00 p.m.
Sunday, March 4
Game 9 – North Dakota State vs. Lehigh – 10:00 a.m.
Game 10 – Duke vs. Kent State – 12:30 p.m.
* All times Eastern
* Team listed first is home team
The remainder of Duke’s contests this weekend will be available via ACC Network Extra. Fans can access the broadcast by going to WatchESPN.com, using the ESPN app or clicking the links below.
Duke vs. Lehigh (Saturday, March 3) ACC Network Extra Broadcast
Duke vs. Kent State (Sunday, March 4) ACC Network Extra Broadcast
Duke will provide live stats for all 10 games this weekend. To access those, go to www.GoDuke.com/softball or click the links below.
Saturday, March 3
Yale vs. Lehigh Live Stats
Yale vs. North Dakota State Live Stats
Duke vs. Lehigh Live Stats
Kent State vs. North Dakota State Live Stats
Sunday, March 4
North Dakota State vs. Lehigh Live Stats
Duke vs. Kent State Live Stats
All 10 games of the Duke Inaugural Tournament, as well as all Duke softball home events, are free admission.
Saturday, March 3 – High 56, Low 32; Sunny (0%)
Sunday, March 4 – High 54, Low 31; Sunny (0%)