HANOVER, N.H. – Kristen Rumley and Katie McEachern both drove in two runs in a five-run sixth as Dartmouth defeated Penn, 7-3, in the deciding game of the Ivy League Softball Championship Series.
Dartmouth (30-17) won the best-of-three series for the first time ever. The Big Green won the opener, 5-1, before Penn won game two, 5-3. Penn defeated Dartmouth in last year’s series that also went three games.
The Big Green, who became a Division I program in 1981, will make their first trip to the NCAA Tournament. Selections will be announced next Sunday (May 11) with regional action beginning May 16.
Rumley (18-7) earned the win in the circle going the distance and allowing just five hits and one walk, while striking out eight.
Penn (19-22-1) had a 3-0 lead heading into the bottom of the fifth, but Kara Curosh gave the Big Green life with a two-run homer to left.
The Big Green then gained the lead in the sixth. Alexis Borden, who pitched all three games in the series for the Quakers, walked the first two batters to open the inning. After an infield fly for the first out, Rumley doubled to left-center, scoring two and giving Dartmouth the lead.
An infield single put runners at the corners. With the infield in, Megan Averitt grounded out to short, setting up second and third with two outs. Borden then uncorked a wild pitch, scoring the runner from third. After a walk and a hit batter, the bases were loaded for McEachern, who singled up the middle to plate two more and chase Borden from the game.
From there, Rumley retired the Quakers in order and the celebration was on.
The host team has now won all eight Ivy League Championship Series. The North and South Division winners have each won four.
The Quakers had built a 3-0 lead for the second-straight game. Kanani Datan's RBI single in the third opened the scoring. Penn scored two more in the fourth on RBI singles by Kayla Dahlerbruch and Korinne Raby.
It is the second-straight year that the Ivy League champion will make its NCAA Tournament debut. Last year, Penn made its first appearance in the tournament field, nearly upsetting Arizona in an elimination game.
With Sunday's win, Dartmouth reached the 30-win mark for the first time since 2000.