CLEMSON, S.C. – Behind five first-half goals, the Tigers defeated Syracuse (4-10-1, 0-8 ACC) 8-0 on Thursday night at Historic Riggs Field for two consecutive ACC wins and three straight victories over the Orange. Clemson remains undefeated (7-0-1) in matches against Syracuse.
Clemson (10-5, 5-3 ACC) maintained possession for much of the early going, and the offense generated an array of opportunities. The floodgates finally opened in the 23rd minute with a pair of quick goals. The first was yet another sister-to-sister score, as sophomore Makenna Morris found her older sister, Maliah, on the right side of the penalty area who fired it past the Orange keeper. Then, just 42 seconds later, forward Caroline Conti played in a dazzling cross to midfielder Hal Hershfelt, who went into a slide and used her left foot to slot it home.
Hershfelt found the back of the net again in the 36th minute, when freshman Layne St. George played in a brilliant corner for a header goal. It was St. George’s first career assist, and the brace brought Hershfelt to seven scores on the year. Five minutes later, midfielder Fran Stables connected with senior Abby Hanks, who struck the ball into the bottom left corner of the net. Moments later, Stables crossed it in high to Hanks yet again, who leaped and headed it past the keeper for a sparkling goal. It was the junior’s first brace of her career and put the Tigers ahead 5-0 at the half.
Clemson’s offensive barrage picked up right where it left off in the second period, as Conti registered her third point of the night with her third goal of the year off an assist from Makenna Morris. In the 59th minute, junior Grace Wagner ripped her second goal of the season, before defender Harper White added her second of the year as well, eight minutes later. White became the sixth Tiger to score on the evening and Clemson tied its season high for goals.
Defensively, Hensley Hancuff, Halle Mackiewicz and Ally Lynch split time as Hancuff registered two saves. It was Lynch’s second appearance of her career, and the trio kept Syracuse off the board.
“It’s always good to play at Historic Riggs in front of our home fans,” said Head Coach Eddie Radwanski. “The girls gave a great performance tonight, and we scored a lot of really good goals. We’d been so close in so many games, and tonight the floodgates finally opened up for us so we were fortunate to take advantage of it. We’re excited to get the three points in the ACC, and now we’ve gotta get ready for a tough game against Louisville.”
Next up, Clemson hosts Louisville for its home regular season finale and Senior Day at Historic Riggs Field on Sunday, October 24. The match will kick off at 1 p.m. on ACCNX.