PRINCETON, N.J. -- Harvard continued its impressive conference form by posting a four-game sweep against Yale as Divisional play opened in both the North and South Divisions. With the wins, the Crimson improved to 11-1 in Ivy play, six wins ahead of second place Brown. The Bears held onto second by rallying for two wins after Dartmouth had won the first tow of the series on Saturday.
The top two teams in the South Division, Penn kept pace with Cornell for the second weekend in a row. With a 3-1 mark versus Columbia, Cornell improved to 10-2 in Ivy play, while Penn’s three wins at Princeton moved the Quakers to 8-4, two wins behind the Big Red.
This weekend, Penn welcomes Cornell in a battle for South Division supremacy that could go a long way to determining the Division champion. But with eight Ivy games remaining on each team’s schedule, a lot of movement could take place within the standings.
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Harvard sophomore Kasey Lange (Ladera Ranch, Calif.) put up 11 hits, 11 RBI and eight runs scored last week as she led Harvard to a 5-1 record, including a 4-0 mark versus North Division foe Yale. Lange, who has hit a double in her last four games, had two games against Yale where she went 3-for-4 with three RBI. She was error free at third base for the week, collecting six putouts and eight assists.
All told, she batted .579, had an ob-base percentage of .609 and
slugged .947. In Harvard’s 6-2 game one win at Rhode Island
on April 10, she hit her fifth home run of the season. Lange has
now earned Ivy Player of the Week honors three times this season
(March 6 & April 10) and five times in her career (April 19 and
May 3 of 2011).
Lange's Weekly Stats
6GP, 19 AB, 8 R, 11 H, 4 2B, 1 HR, 11 RBI, 3 BB, 1 K, .579 Avg., .609 OBP, .947 Slg.%
PITCHER OF THE WEEK
Senior Rachel Brown (San Diego) helped Harvard to a 5-1 week by winning all three of her starts. She allowed just one earned run in each start and posted a 1.40 ERA to go along with 28 strikeouts in 15 innings pitched. She collected a season-high 14 strikeouts in 6-2 win over URI on April 10. Against Yale on Saturday, Brown the struck out nine of the first 11 batters she faced.
Brown, the 2011 Ivy League Pitcher of the Year, has now earned
Ivy League Pitcher of the Week honors four times this season and
has 11 such honors in her career, including three as a junior and
two as a freshman and sophomore.
Brown's Weekly Stats
1.40 ERA, 3-0, 3 App., 3 GS, 2 CG, 15.0 IP, 9 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 4 BB, 28 K
ROOKIE OF THE WEEK
Penn freshman Alexis Borden (Yorba Linda, Calif.) posted three wins over South Division foe Princeton over the weekend. She threw her league-leading sixth shutout to beat the Tigers on Saturday, 8-0 (the game was 0-0 going into seventh). She then started both games on Sunday and threw two more complete games, allowing just one run in each. In the three complete game wins, she posted a 0.67 ERA and added 21 strikeouts in 21 innings of work, while walking just three. It marks Borden's third Rookie of the Week honor of 2012 (March 13 and March 20) and she was also named the Pitcher of the Week on April 2.
Borden's Weekly Stats
0.67 ERA, 3-0, 3 App., 3 GS, 3 CG, 21.0 IP, 15 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 21 K
Hillary Barker, Dartmouth (Sr., P - Duvall, Wash.)
4GP, 13 AB, 2 R, 6 H, 2 2B, 2 HR, 5 RBI, 2 BB, 1 K, .462 Avg., .533 OBP, 1.077 Slg.%
2.05 ERA, 1-1, 3 App., 2 GS, 2 CG, 1 Sv., 13.2 IP, 16 H, 7 R, 4 ER, 5 BB, 4 K
Meredith Brown, Princeton (Fr., P/1B - San Diego, Calif.)
1.00 ERA, 1-0, 1 App., 1 GS, 1 CG, 7.0 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 7 K
Maddie Cousens, Princeton (So., C/OF - Albany, Calif.)
5GP, 11 AB, 2 R, 5 H, 2 2B, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 0 K, .455 Avg., .500 OBP, .636 Slg.%
Emily Gusse, Harvard (Fr., INF - San Diego, Calif.)
6GP, 12 AB, 3 R, 5 H, 1 2B, 4 RBI, 1 BB, 0 K, .417 Avg., .462 OBP, .500 Slg.%
Jessica Melendez, Penn (Jr., OF - Miami, Fla.)
4GP, 16 AB, 2 R, 7 H, 2 HR, 5 RBI, 1 K, .438 Avg., .438 OBP, .812 Slg.%
Tristin Moone, Columbia (So., UT - Waterflow, N.M.)
4GP, 12 AB, 2 R, 5 H, 1 2B, 2 HR, 4 RBI, 2 BB, 1 K, .417 Avg., .500 OBP, 1.000 Slg.%
Christy Nelson, Yale (Jr., 3B - San Diego, Calif.)
6GP, 14 AB, 2 R, 5 H, 1 2B, 1 3B, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 2 BB, 1 K, .357 Avg., .438 OBP, .571 Slg.%
Kate Strobel, Brown (Sr., 1B - Denver, Colo.)
6GP, 18 AB, 5 R, 9 H, 2 2B, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 3 BB, 2 SB, .500 Avg., .571 OBP, .778 Slg.%
Kristen Towne, Cornell (Jr., C - Brecksville, Ohio)
6GP, 14 AB, 4 R, 6 H, 3 2B, 3 RBI, .429 Avg., .643 Slg.%
Brown junior infielder Stephanie Thompson is second in the nation in batting average through games played on April 15 with a .489 mark. Sam Fischer of Loyola Marymount is first with a .513 average. Harvard senior Jane Alexander is also in the top-10 with a .449, good for ninth in the nation. Thompson's slugging percentage of .864 is 13th in the nation. Thompson is also the sixth toughest batter in the nation to strikeout, as she has just two strikeouts in 88 at bats. Alexander also cracks the top-15 in triples per game with a 0.12 mark (14th).
Cornell junior catcher Kristen Towne ranks 10th in the nation with a 0.35 doubles per game mark. Harvard senior pitcher Rachel Brown checks in at sixth nationally with a 10.0 strikeouts per seven innings average, while she ranks eighth with a 4.08 hits per seven innings mark. Cornell senior Lauren Marx ranks tied for 7th in the nation with four saves on the year.
A New Home
Dartmouth Athletic Director Harry Sheehy along with head softball coach announced that the Dartmouth Softball Park, an on-campus facility, would play host to the team's home opener on Friday, April 6, which turned out to be a 1-0 win over Penn.
The $3.1 million project includes wrap around seating for 400
fans, sunken dugouts, bullpens, batting cages, press box,
scoreboard and an artificial FieldTurf playing surface with
superior drainage capacity. The team will use a locker room,
training room and public restrooms that are already located within
the Chase Field Complex. The new Dartmouth Softball Park will also
have the capability to live stream all home softball games.
Ivy Title Talk
Dating back to 1980, the first season of Ivy League softball play, six Ivy teams have combined for 35 titles in the 32 seasons of play. Yale won the inaugural title in 1980, while Princeton leads the League with 17 titles. Cornell, Brown and Harvard each have five titles, followed by Yale (2) and Penn (1). In 2010, Cornell prevailed in Game 3 of the Championship Series over Harvard, 3-2, for its second title in as many seasons, before Harvard halted that streak by sweeping the Big Red in 2011.
The softball championship series, which pits the regular season champions of the North and South Divisions against each other, began in 2007. That season, Harvard defeated Penn in consecutive games to win the first Ivy League Championship Series. The Cimson have represented the North in four of the five League Championships series (all but 2009 when Dartmouth won the North Divison).
Ivy League Championship Series History
2007 -- Harvard (North) vs. Penn (South)
Game One: Harvard def. Penn, 4-0
Game Two: Harvard def. Penn, 4-2
Harvard wins series, 2-0 (Soldier Softball Field // Cambridge, Mass.)
2008 -- Harvard (North) vs. Princeton (South)
Game One: Princeton def. Harvard, 4-2
Game Two: Princeton def. Harvard, 5-1
Princeton wins series, 2-0 (Class of 1895 Field // Princeton, N.J.)
2009 -- Dartmouth (North) vs. Cornell (South)
Game One: Cornell def. Dartmouth, 4-0
Game Two: Dartmouth def. Cornell, 5-1
Game Three: Cornell def. Dartmouth, 6-1
Cornell wins series, 2-1 (at Niemand*Robison Field // Ithaca, N.Y.)
2010 -- Harvard (North) vs. Cornell (South)
Game One: Cornell def. Harvard, 3-1
Game Two: Harvard def. Cornell, 4-2
Game Three: Cornell def. Harvard, 3-2
Cornell wins series, 2-1 (at Niemand*Robison Field // Ithaca, N.Y.)
2011 -- Harvard (North) vs. Cornell (South)
Game One: Harvard def. Cornell, 5-0
Game Two: Harvard def. Cornell, 4-0
Harvard wins series, 2-0 (at Soldiers Field // Cambridge, Mass.)
The 17-Ivy Win Plateau
Since the Ivy schedule format change in 2007, a team has finished with 17 or more League wins five times and won its division on each of those five occasions. In 2008, Princeton set the record with an 18-2 mark en route to claiming the South Division title. In 2009, Cornell became the second team to crack the 17-Ivy win plateau with a 17-3 record to take the South Division. Then in 2010, both the North (Harvard) and South (Cornell) Division winners reached 17-wins. In 2011, Harvard tied for the most League wins all-time at 18-2 while becoming the fifth squad to win at least 17 Ivy games and win its division.
College Sports Madness
College Sports Madness names National Players of the Week for NCAA Division I softball and the website also selects Players of the Week for 30 conferences, including the Ivy League:
March 5 - Stephanie Thompson, Brown
March 12 - Rachel Brown, Harvard
March 19 - Kasey Lange, Harvard
March 26 - Georgia Guttadauro, Penn
April 2 - Alexis Borden, Penn
April 9 - Lauren Bucolo, Cornell
April 16 - Kasey Lange, Harvard
2012 PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
March 6 - Kasey Lange (Harvard)
March 13 - Alyssa Schmidt (Princeton)
March 20 - Jane Alexander (Harvard)
March 27 - Stephanie Thompson (Brown)
April 3 - Stephanie Thompson (Brown)
April 10 - Kasey Lange (Harvard)
April 17 - Kasey Lange (Harvard)
2012 PITCHERS OF THE WEEK
March 6 - Rachel Brown (Harvard)
March 13 - Rachel Brown (Harvard)
March 20 - Rachel Brown (Harvard)
March 27 - Laura Ricciardone (Harvard)
April 3 - Alexis Borden (Penn)
April 10 - Liza Kuhn (Princeton)
April 17 - Rachel Brown (Harvard)
2012 ROOKIES OF THE WEEK
March 6 - Liz Caggiano (Columbia)
March 13 - Alexis Borden (Penn)
March 20 - Alexis Borden (Penn)
March 27 - Kristen Rumley (Dartmouth)
April 3 - Brooke Darling (Columbia)
April 10 - Linda Laeufer (Cornell)
April 17 - Alexis Borden (Penn)
2012 HONOR ROLLS
March 6 - Meredith Brown (Princeton), Kara Curosh (Dartmouth) Jenny Edwards (Cornell), Alyson Onyon (Cornell), Kristen Rumley (Dartmouth), Stephanie Thompson (Brown), Sydney Turchin (Penn), Kelsey Vandebergh (Princeton).
March 20 - Tori Balta (Yale), Jennifer Bergeron (Columbia), Kara Curosh (Dartmouth), Kayla Dahlerbruch (Penn), Evan Gray (Dartmouth), Liza Kuhn (Princeton), Nicole Ontiveros (Princeton), Rachel Rendina (Princeton), Kalli Schultea (Columbia), Kate Strobel (Brown).
March 27 - Alexis Borden (Penn), Trista Chavez (Brown), Alix Cook (Columbia), Maddie Cousens (Princeton), Kara Curosh (Dartmouth), Brooke Darling (Columbia), Georgia Guttadauro (Penn), Meg Johnson (Yale), Linda Laeufer (Cornell), Lauren Marx (Cornell), Shelby Olson (Harvard), Emily Snodgrass (Columbia).
April 3 - Jane Alexander (Harvard), Katherine Applebe (Harvard),
Lauren Bucolo (Cornell), Trista Chavez (Brown), Morgan Cook
(Columbia), Kat Hicks (Dartmouth), Jessica Melendez (Penn), Christy
Nelson (Yale), Sarah Onorato (Yale), Alex Peyton (Princeton), Jenna
Stoller (Cornell), Sydney Turchin (Penn).
April 10 - Alix Cook (Columbia), Kayla Dahlerbruch (Penn), Brooke Darling (Columbia), Meg Johnson (Yale), Erin Keene (Cornell), Katherine Lantz (Harvard), Tristin Moone (Columbia), Alex Peyton (Princeton), Noelle Ramirez (Dartmouth), Laura Ricciardone (Harvard), Kristen Rumley (Dartmouth), Kate Strobel (Brown).
April 17 - Hillary Barker (Dartmouth), Meredith Brown (Princeton), Maddie Cousens (Princeton), Emily Gusse (Harvard), Jessica Melendez (Penn), Tristin Moone (Columbia), Christy Nelson (Yale), Kate Strobel (Brown), Kristen Towne (Cornell).