CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - Freshman Conner Hulse earned
his first career victory against league-leading Dartmouth Sunday
afternoon to salvage a doubleheader split in Ivy League action at
O'Donnell Field against the Big Green. Dartmouth took the opener by
a count of 11-5 before Hulse and two relievers pitched the Crimson
to a 4-3 win in the nightcap.
The Crimson finishes Ivy League play at 10-10 while becoming the only team to defeat Dartmouth twice this year. Dartmouth sees its league-best record finish at 16-4 heading into the Ivy League Championship series in one week.
Harvard banged out eight hits in the first five innings of the nightcap with Jeff Reynolds plating a pair of runs on an opposite field single in the fourth and Tom Stack-Babich delivering the eventual game-winning run with a line drive single to left in the fifth against Dartmouth starter Cole Sulser (3-2).
Joe Wren gave Dartmouth a 1-0 lead with a single in the first inning and he scored a run in the fourth when he led off with a single and came around on an opposite field triple from David Turnbull.
Hulse, who struck out six in 8.1 innings, settled in and then got some help from the defense. In the sixth, Jeff Onstott led off with a triple down the right field line but was cut down at the plate by Harry Douglas on a grounder to third. Three batters later the Big Green had runners on the corners and Turnbull pulled a hard grounder between first and second only to be robbed by Taylor Meehan, who laid out to snare the grounder before quickly getting up to throw out the speedy Turnbull.
Dartmouth added a run in the seventh as the first two batters got on base and pulled off a double steal to put runners in scoring position with no outs. Jonathan Santopadre plated a run with a single to left but Hulse struck out leadoff batter Jake Carlson and received a great turn at second base by Meehan once again as the Crimson pulled off a 5-4-3 inning-ending double play.
Hulse struck out three of the next four batters he faced before being lifted with one out in the ninth inning as Dartmouth went to left-handed pinch hitter Nick Santomauro, who was batting .479 in league play but got the game off to start. Harvard head coach went to lefty Will Keuper and the freshman got his man, inducing a flyball to center. Walsh then brought Meehan in from second base to close the game out and the senior did so with two nasty curveballs to end the game.
Meehan added a pair of hits out of the second spot in the batting order.
In game one, Dartmouth jumped on Dan Zailskas for eight hits and took a commanding 9-3 lead in the fourth after Ray Allen lifted a three-run homer just over the right field wall.
Freshman Kyle Hendricks threw a complete game for the Big Green, allowing five hits and four earned runs while striking out four. He got into trouble in the second by allowing a single to Tyler Albright and a double to Stack-Babich but retired the next three batters. In the third, Harvard pushed three runs across with Stack-Babich delivering an RBI single.
Stack-Babich added another RBI single in the seventh to finish the game with three hits to lead the Crimson.
Harvard returns to action Tuesday afternoon in a nonleague game against nearby Northeastern.