Pictured: Rachel Brown pitched the second no-hitter of her
career against Columbia.
Photo Courtesy: Gil Talbot Photography
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Rachel Brown recorded her second no-hitter of the season in game one as the Harvard softball team swept Columbia in a pair of Ivy League games. The Crimson held off the Lions in game two to earn a 2-1 win.
Brown needed 90 pitches to silence the Lions, allowing just one baserunner on a first inning error and striking out 12 for her ninth win of the season. Columbia pitcher Maureen O’Kane nearly matched Brown through the first five innings, holding the Crimson scoreless until the Harvard sixth.
Harvard plated the first runs of the game in the bottom of the sixth as Jennifer Francis led off with a single to right field, followed by consecutive bunt singles by Emily Henderson and Ellen Macadam to load the bases. Stephanie Krysiak ripped the next pitch up the middle, scoring Francis and Henderson to give the hosts a 2-0 lead. Whitney Shaw dropped a two-out single into left field to score Krysiak to give Harvard a 3-0 lead after six full innings. At the plate, Shaw went 2 for 3 with an RBI and Krysiak went 1 for 3 with two RBIs and a run scored.
In the second game, Julia Moore surrendered one run and struck out one batter in three-plus innings of work. Margaux Black and Brown each pitched two solid innings of relief, giving up no runs on two combined hits. Black picked up her second win of the year and Brown recorded three more strikeouts on the day to earn her second save of the season and finished the day with 15 strikeouts over nine innings of work.
Moore got out of a jam in the second inning thanks to solid defense behind her. After Columbia loaded the bases with one out, Macadam recorded the second out of the frame with a heads-up play. The second baseman fielded a groundball and gunned it home to get the force out at the plate. Moore helped her own cause by gobbling up a comebacker and flipping it to first base to get out of the inning unscathed.
Harvard pushed two runs across the plate in the second inning as Francis plated Ferri and Mari Zumbro scored Jessica Pledger. Columbia put up its first run of the day in the fourth inning. Jennifer Bergeron hit into a fielder’s choice which scored Stephanie Yagi from third. Ferri finished the game 3 for 3 with a run scored and Zumbro was 1 for 1 with an RBI.
Harvard upped its record to 14-16 overall and 6-2 in the Ivy League. Columbia drops to 8-20 overall and 1-7 in the conference. The Crimson returns to action April 13 as it takes on Providence College in a single road game.