"Do you have a sister? Asking for a friend," Nick Viall joked in the comments of Jessica Clarke's post

By Aurelie Corinthios
March 30, 2020 10:59 AM
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A beloved Bachelor is off the market: Ben Higgins is engaged.

Higgins, who headlined season 20 of The Bachelor in 2016, popped the question to his girlfriend Jessica Clarke over the weekend — and the congratulations from stars of the franchise have been pouring in.

In the comments of Clarke’s Instagram post announcing the news, fellow former Bachelor Nick Viall joked, “Do you have a sister? Asking for a friend.”

Ashley Iaconetti, who co-hosts the iHeartRadio Almost Famous podcast with Higgins, sweetly congratulated the couple, who started dating in early 2019 after Higgins slid into Clarke’s DMs on Instagram.

“I’m soooo happy for you guys!!!” she gushed. “Your love is so beautiful! I’m so glad you found each other! Look at what Instagram did!!”

“Question: How’d he convince you to put jeans on?” Iaconetti joked, referring to Clarke’s outfit in the engagement photos.

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Becca Tilley, who came in fourth on Higgins’ season of The Bachelor, wished her ex and his bride-to-be the best.

“Y’all are the best!!!” she wrote. “I am so thrilled for both of you! Congratulations!”

Added former Bachelorette Becca Kufrin, “So flipping happy for you two and can’t wait to celebrate with so much champagne! Your love, support and respect for one another is beautiful, and I can’t wait to see where this life will take you together.”

Several other Bachelor and Bachelorette stars also commented their congratulations, including Wells Adams, Blake Horstmann, Cassie Randolph, Jared Haibon, Danielle Maltby, Caelynn Miller-Keyes, Kristina Schulman, Raven Gates and Kendall Long.

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Higgins, 31, told Entertainment Tonight he was originally planning to propose in New York City’s Central Park but had to adjust his plan due to the coronavirus pandemic. Instead, he popped the question in Franklin, Tennessee, where Clarke’s family lives.

“I was super nervous,” he admitted. “She’s my best friend, my partner and I love her. I was nervous to kind of do this whole thing in front of her. I wasn’t anxious, it’s just a big moment!”

“I still just can’t believe it,” Clarke said. “This is exactly how I would have wanted it to be. Central Park would have been magical and special in its own way. But it’s really cool that we just got to be together last night and not really have to talk to anyone else but my family. It was great. It was perfect. I couldn’t imagine it a better way.”

“I’ve shared some ups and downs,” added Higgins, who split from his fiancée and Bachelor finalist Lauren Bushnell (who is now married to country singer Chris Lane) in May 2017. “But now it’s time for a new chapter, and I think that excites me.”

“It’s a chapter for me to have a lot of peace when it comes to romantic love, a lot of confidence in our partnership and who we are to each other, and kind of to start a chapter of no more tears and no more heartbreak,” he continued. “I’m not going to break this girl’s heart and I know she’s not going to break mine. It’s time to start a new, more confident journey forward.”