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Clemson United to take on Duke in ACC quarterfinals

Toby Corriston
When the Tigers last took on then-ranked No. 8 Duke in September, they pulled off an upset with a 2-0 win.

Clemson United will host the Duke Blue Devils in the quarterfinals of the ACC Tournament on Sunday night at Historic Riggs Field.

Clemson, which secured the No. 4 seed in the tournament, earned a first-round bye after finishing the season 9-3-3 (4-2-2 ACC) and second in goals scored in the conference.

The Tigers have found success on both a team and individual level this season. Top performer and senior midfielder Ousmane Sylla has earned the unofficial title of team MVP, tying for fourth place in the ACC in points and points per game, with 21 and 1.4, respectively. Sylla is also ranked third in assists with seven and assists per game with 0.47.

Another standout player this season for Clemson is sophomore midfielder Nathan Richmond, who has shown his technical skills and playmaking abilities all season. The Atlanta native placed third in the ACC in both shots, with 44, and shots per game with 2.93.

The Blue Devils finished right below Clemson with the No. 5 seed in the tournament, earning their trip to the quarterfinals with a 3-2 victory over No. 12 Boston College earlier this week.

Duke is no stranger to top performers this year. Graduate forward Forster Ajago leads the ACC in shots, points, goals and their respective per-game averages. The Blue Devils’ offense is also bolstered by forward Ulfur Bjornsson and midfielder Nick Pariano, who were also included in the top ten stats records for points this season.

The last time Clemson faced Duke was at Historic Riggs Field on Sept. 15, where the Tigers shut out the Blue Devils 2-0. Clemson, unranked at the time, upset the then-ranked No. 8 Blue Devils thanks to an own goal in the first half and a header from forward Tyler Trimnal to deal the knockout blow. What ended as an intense, physical matchup will likely replicate itself in the rematch as Duke looks for vengeance.

Kick off will be at 6:00 p.m., and the game will be broadcast on the ACC Network.


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Toby Corriston, Asst. Photo Editor
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