DURHAM, N.C. - As Duke Athletics nears the conclusion of 2016, we wanted to look back at some of the top moments that made it so extraordinary.
In this countdown titled, “Top 16 of 2016,” we have chosen 16 noteworthy events from the calendar year that encapsulated the spirit and success of Duke while also illuminating the growth and achievements that our athletic programs continue to attain.
The series, starting Friday, December 16, will continue daily until its conclusion on December 31.
No. 5: Baseball Earns NCAA Bid
Duke baseball earned an at-large bid to the 2016 NCAA Tournament, ending a drought of 55 years without making the postseason event. After beginning the season 10-13 (1-7 ACC), the Blue Devils went 23-9 over their final 32 regular season games, including a 13-8 record in the ACC. During that span, Duke went 9-7 against Top 20 RPI teams and collected series victories over Georgia Tech, Clemson, Virginia Tech, Florida State and Pitt while posting a perfect 10-0 mark in non-conference play. The Blue Devils were No. 116 in the RPI after March 29 and rose to No. 26 garner the program’s sixth NCAA Tournament bid and first since 1961.