The Crimson remain above .500 this season after a series split at Brown. (Gil Talbot)
PROVIDENCE – It was another thrilling day at Murray Stadium as Harvard and Brown split the Sunday doubleheader and season series after a pair of close battles. The Crimson (16-15, 5-7 Ivy) came away with an early afternoon win, 3-2, but its rally versus the Bears (8-20, 4-8 Ivy) fell short in an 8-7 loss in the nightcap.
After pummeling 31 hits on Saturday, Harvard was held to just 13 on Sunday in a much closer day. Freshman Connor Quinn had a team-best three hits in six at bats, driving in a run and scoring another. Once again Ethan Ferreira, who saw his 21-game hit streak snap in Game 1 on the day, put together a solid outing with a club-best three RBI.
On the rubber, Sean Poppen followed up last week's gem with another solid outing, going 6.1 innings, giving up just two runs on five hits. The junior ace struck out a season-best 10 batters and walked just two to earn the win. In the first game, Tanner Anderson came on in relief to earn the save, before turning around to start Game 2. Anderson went just 2.1 innings in the late afternoon game, however, yielding four runs.
Game 1 – Harvard 3, Brown 2
In the front end of the Sunday doubleheader, Harvard got all of the offense it needed in the top of the second inning in the eventual pitchers' duel. After Matt Hink singled to center, Matt Rothenberg moved him up a station after drawing a walk. John Fallon followed up with another walk to load the bases with one out, before Connor Quinn walked Hink in to make it 1-0. From there, Jack Colton sent a two-RBI single into left to make it 3-0 quickly.
Poppen found his groove early, but yielded a run in the bottom of the third after a single from Henry and a pair of ground outs put a run on the board to make it 3-1. The two sides combined for just four hits from the top of the fourth through the top of the seventh, but Brown made it interesting in the final frame of the game.
A leadoff double and a subsequent walk after a fly ball put two on with one out, before a seeing eye single chucked the bases. Anderson then was called in and induced two grounders to end the threat, though one crossed the plate.
Game 2 – Brown 8, Harvard 7
In the second game of the day, the two teams combined for 15 runs on 20 hits, and were able to score early.
After Colton doubled down the left field line, Drew Reid reached on an error, advancing him to third to put runners on the corners. Mitch Klug grounded into a double play, but Colton came across safely to make it 1-0.
The Bears evened the ledger in the bottom half of the frame on a Shulman home run, but the Anderson's baserunning on a Hink double – one he was trying to stretch into a triple – made it 2-1 after two. But Brown tacked on three in the bottom of the third on a flurry of singles to eventually take a 4-2 advantage into the fourth.
In the top of the fifth, however, Quinn came across to cut into the lead after Ferreira sent a blooping ball into right. The Crimson regained the lead, at 5-4, in the top of the sixth after Reid reached on an error and moved to second, which plated both Rothenberg and Hink.
But Brown tacked on two runs on three hits to make it 6-5 in the bottom of the stanza in the back-and-forth affair. Harvard had a runner in scoring position in the top of the eighth after Rothenberg doubled in the leadoff position, but nothing came of it. And then the Bears made it 8-5 on a groundout, a single and a double in the blink of an eye.
The Harvard rally was on in the top of the last inning after Reid reached again on an error, advancing to second on a Klug slow roller to first. With one swing of the bat, Ferreira homered to deep center to cut the lead instantly to just one run, but a pair of induced groundouts ended things in the Bears' favor, 8-7.
The Crimson will turn right around to square off with UMass in the first round of the Beanpot on Monday in Amherst, before taking on Boston College on Wednesday.