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The ideal lineup: Look out for softball’s pitching room

Aralynn Minnick // Asst. Photo Editor

Clemson pitcher Valerie Cagle on the mound against South Carolina in March.

Clemson softball (36-1, 12-0 ACC) is currently at the peak of conference play. With a team ERA of .70 in 229 innings pitched, the Tigers in the circle are among the best arsenals in the country.  
Led by associate head coach Kyle Jamieson, the program has seen extensive growth with Jamieson’s leadership and the Tigers’ commitment to their circle performance. The Clemson pitchers are making a name for themselves with 16 shutouts thus far this season. Here is an update on the four leading defensive players in Clemson softball:
Millie Thompson
Millie Thompson is a junior lefty known to deliver a strong game. In her 12 circle appearances this season, 11 have been starts. The Virginia native has pitched 61.2 innings, earning a 1.25 ERA. 
Previously the May 2022 ACC pitcher of the week, she has struck out 54 batters and allowed just 13 runs. 
Reagan Spencer 
Righty Reagan Spencer holds a .88 ERA in 24 innings pitched this season. 
The junior has started in four of the 11 games she has pitched, going 4-0 with one save as well. Having struck out 14 batters and allowed just seven runs, Spencer is definitely a weapon for the Tigers. 
In her 2022 season, she held a 1.37 ERA. With four conference series left in the schedule, Spencer looks to be on track to continue her success of previous years. 
Valerie Cagle
Valerie Cagle is currently one of the top pitchers in the nation. 
If her impressive statistics did not prove enough, this accolade was emphasized by the conference’s announcement of Cagle as ACC pitcher of the week — her third consecutive weekly honor and fifth this season.
In her time in the circle this year, she has thrown for 110.1 innings, allowing for just 11 runs, to earn a 0.44 ERA. Her 17-1 win record also includes a perfect game — the first in program history — when she pitched against Mercer in early March. She also leads the Tigers in strikeouts with 125. 
The right-handed pitcher has earned national recognition multiple times, including National Player of the Week, Pitcher of the Week and ACC Player of the Week. Unsurprisingly, she is ranked second in the country and first in the ACC for ERA. 
Also a powerhouse at the plate, Cagle is seventh in the NCAA for her .481 batting average. Clemson is ranked No. 4 in the nation for their batting performance as a team.    
Cagle’s versatility as Clemson’s ace and her consistent performances on both sides of the ball has made her a fan favorite, in addition to her leadership in the program since its 2020 inception. 
Brooke McCubbin
Sophomore Brooke McCubbin has had nine circle appearances this season and has been a primary reliever for the team in her 32 innings pitched. 
She holds an impressive 0.44 ERA on top of her 3-0 record in wins and one save. The Georgia native has only allowed four runs this year and still has plenty of time with the Tigers, given her underclassmen status. 
Last year, she had five wins in her 18 appearances, including six starts.
*All statistics updated as of April 4, 2023

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Kiley Bouchard
Kiley Bouchard, Senior Reporter
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