Princeton, Cornell Come to Cambridge for First Home League Softball Weekend

Princeton, Cornell Come to Cambridge for First Home League Softball Weekend

Ellen Macadam is second in the Ivy League with a .441 batting average (Harvard Athletic Communications).


The Harvard softball team opens its home Ivy League schedule, facing South Division foes Princeton and Cornell at Soldiers Field this weekend. The Crimson went 6-2 against South Division opponents last season in regular-season play and faced the Big Red in the 2010 Ivy League Championship Series, falling in three games.   

Last Time Out
Rookie Kasey Lange took the Crimson on her shoulders, driving in six runs over two games to help Harvard to a pair of 4-2 wins at Columbia Sunday. Lange's grand slam in Game 1 gave the Crimson all the offense it needed, and her two-run single in the fifth inning of Game 2 plated the winning and insurance runs. Rachel Brown and Laura Ricciardone both picked up wins on the day and Ellen Macadam and Mari Zumbro also had home runs on the afternoon. 

About the Tigers
Princeton (10-14, 2-2 Ivy) kicked off its 2011 Ivy League schedule last weekend at home, splitting a pair of doubleheaders against Brown and Yale. The Tigers captured a pair of one-run wins on the weekend, including downing the Bears in extra innings in their first Ivy action of the season.

Lizzy Pierce ended last week as the Tigers' top hitter with a .368 batting average and also leads the team in doubles (seven), triples (one) and slugging percentage (.632). Kelsey Vandebergh has a team-high tying total of four home runs and has a team-best 18 RBI in 24 games played. Alex Peyton also has four home runs and is tied for second with 15 RBI. Three pitchers have rotated starts for Princeton this season with Peyton topping the list with 60.1 innings pitched on the season, 42 strikeouts and a 4.18 earned run average.

About the Big Red
Cornell (14-12-1, 3-1 Ivy) took three of four games last weekend to open Ivy play, sweeping Yale and splitting with Brown. The Big Red handled the Bulldogs, blanking them, 3-0, in the opener and posting a 10-2 final in six innings in Game 2. Cornell edged the Bears the following afternoon in Game 1, 2-1, and fell by a 9-3 outcome in the second game for its first Ivy loss of the season.

Marissa Amiraian enters the weekend with a team-best .370 batting average, to go along with team leading totals of 34 hits, 18 runs and three triples. Kristen Towne has provided the pop for Cornell, bashing six longballs on the season and driving in a team-leading 23 runs. Erin Belles has a .362 batting average in 21 games this season, and is second on the team with four home runs. Elizabeth Dalrymple remains one of the most dominant pitchers in the league, boasting a miniscule 0.77 ERA in 91.1 innings, while fanning 102 opposing batters.

What a Week!
The Crimson had a stellar week last week, winning six games and limiting opposing teams to two or fewer runs in all but one contest. The Harvard bats were in full swing as the Crimson plated 45 runs and cut three games short due to the mercy rule. After the first weekend of Ivy League play, Harvard stands as the only team in the league with an unblemished conference record. Harvard also has the most total wins (18) of any team in the Ancient Eight. 

Freshmen Forces
The class of 2014 has made a major impact through 28 games this season. Kasey Lange has been an offensive force for the Crimson as she leads the league in RBI (28), doubles (11) and ranks fourth in hits (30) and fifth in batting average (.366). Laura Ricciardone ranks third in the league in earned run average (1.91), wins (6) runs allowed (27) and earned runs allowed (19). Allison Scott has been solid behind the plate this season and leads the team in walks with 12.

Crimson Statistical Leaders
Batting: Macadam, .441; Lange, .366; Shaw, .350; Regan, .301
Slugging: Macadam, .710; Lange, .634; Shaw, .575; Scott, .421; Zumbro, .408
On-base: Macadam, .495; Shaw, .438; Lange, .426; Scott, .414
Runs: Macadam, 27; Lange, 15; Heritage, 13; Henderson/Regan, 12
RBI: Lange, 28; Shaw, 18; Macadam, 15; Zumbro, 12; Regan, 11
Home runs: Macadam, 6; Shaw, 4; Lange/Zumbro, 3
Steals: Heritage, 8; Macadam/Shaw, 5
ERA: Brown, 1.69 (103.1 IP); Ricciardone, 1.91 (69.2 IP)
Record: Brown, 12-4; Ricciardone, 6-3
Strikeouts: Brown, 178, Ricciardone, 48