Softball Begins Seven Games in Southern California with Loyola Marymount Invitational

Softball Begins Seven Games in Southern California with Loyola Marymount Invitational

Harvard travels to southern California for the Loyola Marymount and UC Riverside Invitationals (Katie Lockhart).

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Harvard softball returns to the diamond this weekend with seven games in five days in southern California. The Crimson begins its west coast trip with a pair of games on March 9 at the Loyola Marymount Invitational. Following the invitational, Harvard will remain in southern California for a pair of games against Colgate and UC Riverside on March 13.

Last Time On The Diamond
Harvard is coming off a 1-3 mark at the Carolina Classic this past weekend. The Crimson picked up its first victory in program history against North Carolina on Friday evening, defeating the Tar Heels, 4-3. Junior Kathleen Duncan earned her third win of the season tossing a complete game allow just two unearned runs, while striking out five Tar Heels. Senior right fielder Maddy Kaplan powered the Crimson offense, batting .364 (4-11) with two walks over the four games.

Ivy League Honors
Junior left-hander Kathleen Duncan grabbed the Ivy League Pitcher of the Week accolades for the second straight week after posting a 1-1 record with a 3.06 ERA, 1.63 WHIP, and nine strikeout at the Carolina Classic. Currently, Duncan has a 3-4 mark on the season with a 2.53 ERA, 1.50 WHIP, and 23 strikeouts in eight appearances this season. 

Why Harvard? – Rhianna Rich

Scouting Loyola Marymount
Loyola Marymount (9-10-1) is coming off a doubleheader sweep of Boston University, 4-2, 4-3 at home in southern California. Freshman Andrea Gonzalez has appeared in all 20 games for the Lions, posting a .321 (17-53) batting average with a double, two homeruns, and six RBI. Classmate, Delanie Wisz leads the Lions driving in eight baserunners in 18 games. 

Scouting Southern Utah
Southern Utah (2-6) is coming off its second win of the season, a 6-5 victory over Seattle University at the St. George Red Desert Classic on March 4. Freshman Taylei Williams leads the Thunderbirds with a .385 (20-52) batting average with four doubles, four homeruns, and 13 RBI to go along with a staggering 1.078 OPS (.692 SLG%, .386 OBP). 

Scouting Providence
Providence (3-11) has been on the west coast since Sunday, March 4 after four games against San Jose State, Pacific, and California State-Northridge in the Louisville Slugger Tournament. Sophomore Miranda Trinidad leads Friar pitchers with a 2.96 ERA, and a 1.50 WHIP, while senior Christina Ramirez has a 3.33 ERA and leads the team with 16 strikeouts.   

Scouting Florida Gulf Coast
Florida Gulf Coast (16-4) enters the Loyola Marymount Invitational winning its past three games over Hoftstra and UC Santa Barbara. Junior outfielder Racquel Fournet and senior Brittany McGuire have powered the Eagle offense early in the year, while junior Brooke Clemens has driven in a team-high 11 runners. In the circle, Eagles pitchers have combined to post a 1.36 ERA with a 1.07 WHIP and 104 strikeouts.

Scouting Colgate
Colgate picked up its first win of the season at the Stetson Tournament with a 6-4, extra innings win over Brown. Sophomore Virginia Irby leads the Raiders with .375 (9-24) batting average with an .840 OPS (.417 SLG%, .423 OBP).

Scouting UC Riverside
Hitting over .300 as a team, UC Riverside has won eight of his last 10 games, including four straight at the Highlander Classic. Senior right-hander Tayler Misfeldt leads Highlander posting a 7-2 record with a staggering 1.86 ERA, 1.02 WHIP and 68 strikeouts.

2018 Ivy League Preseason Poll
The first year the Ivy League conducted a preseason ranking, Harvard was picked to finish second receiving a total of 114 points, including five first place votes in a vote by media members, sports information directors, and national media. 

Full Release: Softball Tabbed Second in Ivy League Preseason Poll

All-Ivy Returners
Harvard tied Dartmouth, Penn and Princeton with the most All-Ivy League selections in 2017, and will return all seven All-Ivy honorees in 2018. Lead-off hitter and shortstop Rhianna Rich, who was one of the nation's top hitters last season, earned first team honors along with outfielder Maddy Kaplan.  

Full Release: Seven Members of Softball Team Earn All-Ivy Recognition

Classroom Success
Harvard garnered the NFCA's Top-10 Academic Team honors for the third straight year, earning a combined 3.588 GPA, the highest mark of all the Ivy League institutions. Additionally, a program-best, 17 Crimson athletes received individual All-America Scholar-Athlete honors.   

Full Release: Softball Earns NFCA Top-10 Academic Team Honors 

The Class of 2021
Harvard softball welcomes three newcomers to the squad in 2018: Morgan Melito (Westlake Village, Calif./Westlake), Aubree Muse (Rineyville, Ky./Central Hardin), and Alyssa Saldana (Riverside, Calif./Martin Luther King, Jr.). 

At the Helm
Jenny Allard is in her 24th season as the head coach of the Harvard softball program, posting a 587-436-3 overall record, including a 281-107-1 mark against Ivy League opponents. Team and individual success has always gone hand-in-hand with Allard with six Ivy League titles, six 30-win season, and five NCAA Championship berths. In addition, she has produced 67 first team, 64 second team, and 41 honorable mention All-Ivy selections as well as seven Ivy League Player of the Years, six Pitcher of the Years, and six Rookie of the Years.

Harvard Magazine: Steering Softball 

Ivy League Network
The Ivy League Network returns for a fifth season as the home for all live streaming and on-demand video content for each of the conference's eight institutions. Broadcast in full HD and featuring a live score bug and play-by-play and color commentary, the Ivy League Network provides fans with unprecedented access to the Ancient Eight.

Multiple subscription options are available to fans, including school-specific and league-wide passes. To learn more about the Ivy League Network or to sign-up today, click here

What's Next 
Harvard opens Ivy League action next Saturday, March 17 for a three-game series with rival, Yale in New Haven, Conn. First pitch is slated for 12:30 p.m.