TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Despite jumping ahead early, the No. 6 Duke Blue Devils (25-31) could not hold off the No. 3 Notre Dame Fighting Irish (36-15) Thursday night in Tallahassee, Fla., falling in the quarterfinals of the 2019 ACC Tournament, 9-2.
The loss brings the Blue Devils’ second year of competition to a close after achieving the highest finish in the league in program history.
Duke struck first in the opening frame, as Marissa Gagliano got things started with a walk and a stolen base. After Deja Davis moved her to third on a sac bunt, Rachel Abboud pushed her home on an RBI groundout to second base. The Blue Devils pushed their lead to 2-0 in the second thanks to back-to-back two-out doubles from Caroline Jacobsen and Dominique Salinas.
The Blue Devils’ defense was stout through the first three frames, keeping the Irish at bay until the bottom of the fourth. A pair of singles and a walk helped load the bases with one out, with a double to the wall in left scoring two to even the contest at 2-2. Notre Dame pushed out in front an inning later, plating two more runs on two hits to make it a 4-2 ballgame. The Irish broke the game open in the sixth, plating four runs on five hits and a Duke error to extend their lead to 9-2, which they would hold until the end to secure the win.
Jacobsen and Salinas tallied the two hits for the Blue Devils’ offense. Peyton St. George earned the start, going 3.1 innings with two strikeouts and three walks before giving way to Amelia Wiercioch (3-6). Shelby Walters and Brianna Butler rounded out the final 2.0 frames in the circle.
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