BLACKSBURG, Va. – After being held in check for most of the day, the Duke Blue Devils (25-23, 9-11 ACC) broke through with a three-run sixth inning to propel them to a 5-1 victory and even the series against the Virginia Tech Hokies (20-26, 6-13 ACC) Saturday afternoon in Blacksburg.
Both pitchers dominated the game through the first four frames, with the only hit coming on a bunt single from Haley Wymbs in the first inning. After getting runners on in the second and fourth via a trio of walks, Tech finally broke through with a run in the fifth. The Hokies capitalized on a Duke error and used a double to right to go up 1-0.
Then came the sixth inning, where the Blue Devils plated three runs to jump out in front for good. Rachel Abboud and Wymbs both tallied one-out infield singles before a foul out would put the Hokies one out away from escaping the frame with the lead. However, Jameson Kavel singled one off the pitcher to load the bases and keep the inning alive, bringing Amelia Wiercioch up to the plate. Wiercioch would then hit one the second baseman could not handle, scoring a trio of runs to push Duke ahead, 3-1.
Tech looked to make some noise in the home half of the sixth, lacing one to the wall in left center with two outs. That would be short lived, as Wymbs fielded the ball and fired a rocket to Kortney Dry at second to catch the runner trying to go two.
The Blue Devils added two insurance runs in the top of the seventh, as an RBI single from Abboud and an RBI groundout from Wymbs moved their lead to 5-1. Peyton St. George, who entered in relief in the fifth, shut down the Hokies in the bottom of the seventh to seal the Duke victory.
St. George (7-4) is now 5-0 in ACC play this season after throwing 2.1 innings and striking out four while only allowing two hits in the win. Katherine Huey earned the start, going 4.2 innings and striking out four.
After being held to one hit through the first five innings, the Blue Devils unloaded three in the sixth and three more in the seventh. Abboud and Wymbs led the way with two hits and a run batted in each. Abboud now has 15 multi-hit games this season, while Wymbs owns six such performances.
Duke and Virginia Tech will close out the series Sunday with a 1 p.m. rubber match at the Tech Softball Park. The contest will be live streamed on ACC Network Extra, which fans can access through WatchESPN.com or 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”.
- Duke is now 1-1 against opponents from the state of Virginia.
- With five runs on the day, Duke is now 14-3 when scoring five or more runs in a game.
- The Blue Devils held Virginia Tech to just one run Saturday, improving to 14-0 when holding its opponents to one run or fewer.
- Duke improved to 21-0 when leading after six innings.
- The Blue Devils also picked up their third win of the year when trailing after five innings.
- Winning the hits battle 6-3, Duke is now 18-7 when out-hitting its opponent.
- Rachel Abboud picked up her 15th multi-hit game of the season, going 2-for-3 with an RBI Saturday.
- Saturday marked the first time this year Abboud has batted in the leadoff spot. Duke has had four different leadoff batters this year (Kavel, Wilson, Moreno & Abboud).
- Haley Wymbs also turned in a two-hit performance, earning her sixth multi-hit contest of the year.
Friday, April 20
Virginia Tech def. Duke, 3-1 (Stats)
Saturday, April 21
Duke def. Virginia Tech, 5-1 (Stats)
Sunday, April 22
Duke at Virginia Tech – 1:00 p.m. ET
ACC Network Extra
Tech Softball Park
A Year Of Firsts...
The Blue Devils’ inaugural campaign will be filled with a number of statistical firsts as the year goes on. Here is a look at the firsts accomplished by Team One so far.
Game: Feb. 8, 2018 vs. FAU (Game 1)
Win (Team): Feb. 8, 2018 vs. FAU (Game 1), 4-3
Win (Individual): Katherine Huey vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
At-Bat: Jameson Kavel vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Pitch: Amelia Wiercioch vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Baserunner: Jameson Kavel (Walked, 1st Inning) vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Hit: Amelia Wiercioch (Double, 1st Inning) vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Single: Rachel Abboud (3rd Inning) vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Double: Amelia Wiercioch (1st Inning) vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Walk: Jameson Kavel (1st Inning) vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Hit By Pitch: Ashleigh Rodriguez (7th Inning) vs. FAU (Game 2), Feb. 8, 2018
Run Batted In: Amelia Wiercioch (1st Inning) vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Sacrifice Hit: Jazmine Moreno (SAC Bunt, 1st Inning) vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Sacrifice Fly: Rachel Abboud (5th Inning) vs. FAU (Game 2), Feb. 8, 2018
Strikeout: Amelia Wiercioch (Strikeout Looking) vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Stolen Base: Dominique Salinas (2nd Inning) vs. FAU (Game 2), Feb. 8, 2018
Complete Game: Katherine Huey vs. Michigan State, Feb. 9, 2018
Shutout: Katherine Huey vs. Michigan State, Feb. 9, 2018
Complete Game Shutout: Katherine Huey vs. Michigan State, Feb. 9, 2018
Extra Innings Game: Feb. 10, 2018 vs. Boston University (L, 7-4 )
Home Run: Katherine Huey (2-Run, 4th Inning) vs. Penn State, Feb. 16, 2018
Save: Amelia Wiercioch vs. Penn State, Feb. 16, 2018
Comeback Win: Feb. 16, 2018 vs. Penn State (Trailed 5-0 in T3, won 7-5)
Triple: Jameson Kavel (6th Inning) vs. Purdue, Feb. 16, 2018
One-Hitter: Amelia Wiercioch vs. Purdue, Feb. 16, 2018
Winning Streak: 5 Games (Feb. 16 vs. Penn State - Feb. 23 vs. Morgan State)
National POTW Honor: Katherine Huey (espnW), Feb. 21, 2018
Extra-Innings Win: March 2, 2018 vs. Yale (W, 4-3 )
Grand Slam: Amelia Wiercioch (4th Inning) vs. Lehigh, March 3, 2018
Run-Rule Victory: March 4, 2018 vs. Kent State (W, 8-0 )
ACC Contest: March 9, 2018 at North Carolina (L, 2-1 )
Multi-Home Run Game: Raine Wilson at North Carolina (Game 1), March 10, 2018
Midweek Contest: March 14, 2018 at Charleston (W, 5-1)
ACC Victory: March 16, 2018 vs. Boston College (W, 4-3)
ACC Victory (Individual): Peyton St. George vs. Boston College, March 16, 2018
Four-Hit Performance: Rachel Abboud vs. Boston College, March 17, 2018 (4-4)
ACC Series Victory: March 16-18, 2018 vs. Boston College
ACC Series Sweep: March 16-18, 2018 vs. Boston College
ACC Road Win: April 1, 2018 at Pitt (2-1)
ACC Double Play Turned: 4-6-3 (K. Dry to J. Kavel to R. Abboud) vs. Georgia Tech, April 6, 2018
ACC Weekend Rubber Game: April 8, 2018 vs. Georgia Tech (L, 5-3)
ACC Road Series Win: April 13-14, 2018 at Notre Dame
Inside-The-Park Home Run: Amelia Wiercioch (3rd Inning) at Notre Dame (Game 2); April 14, 2018
Multi-Double Play Game: Two at Virginia Tech; April 20, 2018