DURHAM – The eighth-seeded Blue Devils are set to open their NCAA Super Regional round against ninth-seeded Stanford at Duke Softball Stadium.
The best-of-three series is set to begin on Friday at noon on ESPN2, with game two slated for 3 p.m. on Saturday. The teams will play a winner-take-all game on Sunday, if necessary, with the winner advancing to the Women’s College World Series in Oklahoma City, Okla., from June 1-9.
Duke (48-10) is coming off a weekend sweep in the NCAA Durham Regional last weekend. The Blue Devils opened regional play against George Mason on Friday where sophomore Ana Gold sent a solo shot over the centerfield wall to defeat the Patriots, 2-1. The Blue Devils then matched up with Charlotte on Saturday to record their fifth shutout win in NCAA tournament play after they blanked the 49er’s, 5-0. Duke faced Charlotte again in the regional championship game on Sunday, where the Blue Devils pulled off a three-run seventh inning to defeat the 49er’s, 4-2, to advance to the super regional round for the second consecutive year.
Stanford (43-13) is making its seventh all-time appearance in the super regional round. The Cardinal own a 50-43 record in NCAA Championship play after defeating Long Beach State and Florida (x2) in their home regional last weekend. Stanford claimed a 1-0 victory over the Sharks in its opening games before defeating Florida in back-to-back contests, 8-0 and 11-2 on Saturday and Sunday, respectively.
HOW TO FOLLOW
Friday’s contest will be broadcast on ESPN2 with Pam Ward and Jenny Dalton-Hill on the call. The remainder of the weekend series will be streamed on ESPN’s family of networks. Live stats will also be available for all contests.
THE ROAD TO OKLAHOMA CITY CONTINUES
Duke softball earned its third-consecutive bid to the NCAA Softball Championships after being selected as the No. 8 seed, the highest in program history, during the NCAA selection show.
Overall, Duke is 8-5 in the NCAA Championship after reaching the program’s first NCAA Super Regional last season. The Blue Devils have outscored opponents at the event 55-35, including five shutouts and their first NCAA run-rule win over No. 19 Georgia in 2022.
Should Duke advance out of super regional play, the Blue Devils will make their first appearance in the NCAA Women’s College World Series.
INSIDE THE SERIES
Duke and Stanford have only met once prior to this weekend, with Duke claiming the 4-2 victory during the Mark Campbell Invitational in Irvine, Calif., earlier this season.
LAST TIME OUT
No. 5 Duke softball defeated Charlotte (35-23), 4-2, on Sunday afternoon in the championship game of the NCAA Durham Regional at Duke Softball Stadium.
Freshman D’Auna Jennings led the way on offense, batting 4-for-4, while accounting for two of Duke’s final four runs. Graduate student Deja Davis, freshman Aminah Vega and sophomore Kelsey Zampa each added one hit and one RBI during the contest.
Freshman Cassidy Curd came in for relief and picked up the win after allowing just one run off two hits in 5.1 innings of work. The Port St. Lucie, Fla., native also struck out 10 during her time in the circle. Junior Lillie Walker earned her fourth save of the season after coming in to close the door on Charlotte in the bottom of the seventh.
The winner of the super regional round will move on to the Women’s College World Series in Oklahoma City, Okla., on June 1-9. Duke would be making its first appearance should it advance.
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