PHILADELPHIA, Pa. – The Harvard softball team (9-10, 1-1 Ivy League) split a pair of games at Penn (10-9, 1-1 Ivy League) in its Ivy League opening series, falling 5-4 in the first game of the doubleheader before earning a 2-1 victory in the second game. Sophomore catcher Elizabeth Shively was the offensive hero for Harvard, going a combined 2-for-6 with four RBI and a run scored in the two games. Harvard pitcher Kathleen Duncan (2-4) had her strongest outing of the year in the circle for Harvard in game 2, pitching a complete game, allowing four hits in seven innings with no earned runs.
Harvard will take on Columbia in a doubleheader tomorrow beginning at 12:30 p.m.
The Crimson bats went to work early in game 1 of Harvard's doubleheader at Penn, as doubles by Maddy Kaplan and Kaitlyn Schiffhauer put two runners in scoring position before Shively's opposite field double plated two runs for the Crimson, putting Harvard up 2-0 early on.
That was enough offense for Duncan, who after a one-out single in the bottom of the first inning, retired 11 straight Penn batters. She worked out of a first and third jam in the bottom of the fifth inning by inducing a groundout to end the frame. An unearned run crossed the board for Penn in the bottom of the sixth inning on Jurie Joyner's RBI single, but Duncan retired the last three batters of the game in the bottom of the seventh inning, all on groundouts, to preserve the win for Harvard.
PENN 5, HARVARD 4
In Harvard's Ivy opener, the host Quakers rallied from a four-run deficit to earn the win after the Crimson posted four runs in the first inning to take an early 4-0 lead.
The Crimson loaded the bases on walks by Rhianna Rich and Schiffhauer wedged around a single from Kaplan before Shively plated two runs with an RBI single to left field, making it 2-0 Harvard. An error on a fielder's choice allowed Schiffhauer to score from third base before a sacrifice fly from Catherine Callaway made it 4-0 Harvard.
Harvard starting pitcher Taylor Cabe threw four shutout innings to start the game before running into trouble in the fifth inning. With the bases loaded and one out, Cabe allowed an RBI groundout, and then was lifted from the game after another walk to load the bases again.
A walk from Lainey Dorris and a 2-RBI single from Jess England tied the game for Penn before Sarah Smith got out of the inning. In the bottom of the sixth, a two-out infield single allowed the go-ahead run to score from third base.