PRINCETON, N.J. -- With the arrival of spring, the eight Ivy League softball teams are putting the finishing touches on their spring break trips and will participate in one more week of complete non-conference play before turning their attention to the impending chase for the 2011 Ivy League title. Each team will be looking to advance to the 2011 Ivy League Championship Series by finishing atop its respective division.
But, with the busiest week of the 2011 schedule now in the books, it is time to honor some of last week’s top performers.
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Kelsey VandeBergh (Beaverton, Ore.) helped lead Princeton to an impressive spring break swing last week in which the Tigers posted a 6-2 record. The junior infielder opened the week with a 2-for-4 performance in a 9-1 win over Georgetown and kept the momentum going for the duration of the trip. She hit .417 for the week, including three doubles and three home runs, added 11 RBI and slugged .916 all while striking out just twice. VandeBergh is Princeton’s first Ivy League Player of the Week since April 28, 2009 when Collette Abbott earned the honor.
VandeBergh’s Weekly Stats
7 GP, 24 AB, 10 H, 5 R, 3 2B, 3 HR, 6 BB, 2 SO, 11 RBI, .417 Avg., .916 Slg.%
PITCHER OF THE WEEK
Harvard junior Rachel Brown (San Diego, Calif.) tossed complete games against Wisconsin, San Diego State, Ohio State and San Diego during the Crimson’s spring break trip to California last week. In her four starts, she struck out 47 batters (11.75 per game) while yielding only eight earned runs for a 2.67 ERA. Brown closed out the trip in style when she led Harvard to a 1-0 win over San Diego in a pitcher’s duel. She threw seven innings of shutout ball against San Diego, fanned a season-high 15 and conceded just an infield single in the win. Brown was also named the Ivy League Pitched of the Week on March 8 and has now earned the honor seven times in her career.
Brown’s Weekly Stats
2.67 ERA, 1-3, 4 App., 4 GS, 4 CG, 1 SHO, 27.0 IP, 23 H, 13 R, 8 ER, 47 SO, 10 BB
ROOKIE OF THE WEEK
Freshman pitcher Prophet Gaspard (Abbeville, La.) went an impressive 3-1 last week for the Columbia Lions. She posted a 2.01 ERA for the week, which included wins over reigning Patriot League champion Bucknell and BIG EAST foe Connecticut, while striking out 20 batters. Gaspard was dominant against the Bison, allowing only three hits and one earned run while striking out five in a complete-game victory. The next day against Youngstown State, the right-hander surrendered just one hit after the second inning against a team currently batting .333. Then, at last weekend’s Hyatt Place Hofstra Invitational, Gaspard was once against tremendous, allowing just two earned runs in 10 1/3 innings pitched while striking out seven. She is Columbia’s first Ivy League Rookie of the Week since March 30, 2010 when Alison Lam took home the accolade.
Gaspard’s Weekly Stats
2.01 ERA, 3-1, 4 App., 3 GS, 3 CG, 24.1 IP, 18 H, 11 R, 7 ER, 20 SO, 8 BB
Melissa Amiraian, Cornell, Sr., OF (Latham, N.Y.)
5 GP, 21 AB, 10 H, 2 R, 1 SO, 2 RBI, .476 Avg., 1.000 Fldg.%
Lauren Bucolo, Cornell, Fr., IF (Palo Alto, Calif.)
5 GP, 13 AB, 5 H, 3 R, 1 2B, 2 SO, 1 BB, 2 RBI, .385 Avg., .462 Slg.%, 1.000 Fldg.%
Elizabeth Dalrymple, Cornell, Sr., P (Devon, Pa.)
0.38 ERA, 1-1, 3 App., 2 GS, 2 CG, 1 SV, 18.2 IP, 10 H, 4 R, 1 ER, 18 SO, 3 BB
Meg Johnson, Yale, Jr., SS (New Milford, Conn.)
4 GP, 11 AB, 5 H, 1 R, 2 2B, 1 SO, 1 BB, 1 SB, 1 RBI, .455 Avg., .636 Slg.%, .923 Fld%
Kasey Lange, Harvard, Fr., 3B/DP (Ladera Ranch, Calif.)
7 GP, 18 AB, 9 H, 2 R, 3 2B, 1 HR, 2 BB, 1 SO, 4 RBI, ,500 Avg., .833 Slg.%
Kristi Munoz, Brown, Fr., C (La Verna, Calif.)
4 GP, 8 AB, 5 H, 2 R, 2 HR, 2 SO, 4 RBI, .625 Avg., 1.375 Slg.%, 1.000 Fldg.%
Tory Roberts, Princeton, Fr., IF (Ramona, Calif.)
8 GP, 25 AB, 10 H, 7 R, 2 2B, 3 SO, 2 BB, 2 RBI, .400 Avg., .440 Slg%, 1.000 Fld%
Anne Marie Skylis, Columbia, Sr., C (Ortonville, Mich.)
8 GP, 20 AB, 7 H, 3 R, 2 2B, 4 BB, 3 RBI, .350 Avg., .450 Slg.%, .978 Fld%
Stephanie Thompson, Brown, So., 3B (Chino, Calif.)
4 GP, 15 AB, 9 H, 5 R, 2 2B, 1 SO, 1 BB, 2 SB, 4 RBI, .600 Avg.
Michelle Tolfa, Princeton, Sr., P (Corona del Mar, Calif.)
1.36 ERA, 3-0, 5 App., 3 GS, 2 CG, 1 SHO, 25.2 IP, 17 H, 6 R, 5 ER, 13 SO, 10 BB
Brown plays just two games this week as it faces cross-town rival Providence on Thursday in a double header at the Friars’ Ray Field. Brown is looking to snap a three-game losing streak.
Columbia also plays a city rival on Thursday when it meets the Jaspers of Manhattan for a two-game set. Then on Saturday, Columbia hosts Saint Peter’s for two in its home-opening series.
Cornell is set for a 12-game week, including four games at the Mount St. Mary’s Invite in Emmittsburg, Md., where it will play the hosts from Mount St. Mary’s as well as Bucknell. The Big Red are in the midst of a 25 road games in a row to open the year.
Dartmouth closes out its stay in Florida with a neutral site double header versus Stetson on Thursday as it looks to end a five-game losing skid.
Harvard heads back out on the road, albeit for more local destinations, this week with seven away games, against Boston University (1), Bryant (2), Quinnipiac (2) and Iona (2).
Penn will play host to Lehigh and Rider for two games apiece on Friday and Saturday, while Princeton will welcome Marist for a two-game set on Sunday. It will mark Princeton’s first home games of the season.
Before heading to Princeton, Marist will play two games at Yale on Wednesday. The Bulldogs will then round out the week with two games at Army on Saturday.