started its 2023 ACC Tournament play on Wednesday as the 'Cuse squared..."/> started its 2023 ACC Tournament play on Wednesday as the 'Cuse squared..."/> started its 2023 ACC Tournament play on Wednesday as the 'Cuse squared..."/>

Syracuse Orange softball advances to the ACC Tournament quarterfinals

Syracuse Orange (Photo by Rich Barnes/Getty Images)
Syracuse Orange (Photo by Rich Barnes/Getty Images) /
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Syracuse Orange softball started its 2023 ACC Tournament play on Wednesday as the ‘Cuse squared off against Virginia. Coach Shannon Doepking gave the ball to her trusty arm in freshman pitcher Madison Knight, who was just named to the ACC’s All-Freshman team this season.

After Savanah Henley set down the No. 9 seed ‘Cuse in order in the first inning, Virginia quickly got on the board in its half of the first, after a couple of singles by Kelly Ayer and Jade Hylton led to a Tori Gilbert sac fly that would bring in Ayer for the Cavaliers’ first run.

‘Cuse would threaten in the second inning with the bases loaded but was not able to get anyone home. Gabby Lantier got thrown out at home following a bloop from Rebecca Clyde, and Lantier had to hold up at third, and then Yamila Evans struck out to end the inning.

Knight was able to get a bounce-back inning in the second as she retired the side in order, starting with a strikeout of Sarah Coon.

Syracuse Orange softball is in the ACC Tournament quarterfinal round.

Virginia was able to get back on the board in the third when a Katie Goldberg groundout scored Lauren VanAssche; however, Knight was able to get Gilbert to strike out, so the damage was halted.

Syracuse Orange softball tied the game in the fourth when Knight was able to lift the ball over the left-field fence to tie it at two apiece. The Orange bats were able to produce again in the fifth when Knight (because who else, right?) brought in Angel Jasso after an error by Jade Hylton at second to give the ‘Cuse the lead at 3-2.

In the sixth inning, Syracuse Orange softball was able to break the game open as the ‘Cuse scored three runs, with two of them coming off a single by Laila Alves and the third coming from a bases-loaded walk to Clyde.

After scoring two more runs in the seventh, Knight would go the distance to get another complete game in this 2023 season, as the ‘Cuse prevailed over No. 8 seed Virginia (30-22) by a final count of 8-2.

Syracuse Orange softball will now take on the ACC Tournament’s top seed, Florida State, in the quarterfinals. Since Knight threw 103 pitches on Wednesday, Lindsey Hendrix is expected to start versus the Seminoles (47-8), a squad that is presently ranked No. 3 across the country.

PREVIOUS MATCH-UP:

The last time the Seminoles and the Orange played, FSU got the sweep at home and completely outmatched ‘Cuse, outscoring Syracuse 23-1 in the three-game set. If Coach Doepking does decide to go to Hendrix, she will be looking to have a better outing against this tough Seminoles offense.

Hendrix was only able to go three innings after allowing nine hits and five runs, with four of them being earned, and didn’t record a strikeout.

You can catch the game on the ACC Network with this quarterfinal battle scheduled to start at 11 am on Thursday, May 11, from Melissa Cook Stadium in South Bend, Ind.

Per SU Athletics, Syracuse Orange softball (24-25-1) is in the ACC Tournament quarterfinals for the second time in program history.

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