CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The Harvard baseball team (26-13, 15-7 Ivy) wins game one of the Ivy League Playoff Series, defeating Columbia (19-22, 13-9), 3-1, Saturday at O'Donnell Field. The Crimson looks to clinch the three-game series in game two tomorrow at noon. A third game will be played if necessary, 40 minutes following the conclusion of the second game. Both games will be broadcast on ESPN+.
Both starting pitchers were dominant in the first six innings of the contest. Junior Hunter Bigge faced the minimum through six innings and did not allow a hit through the first five innings. The junior also scored the first run of the game, leading off the bottom of the seventh inning with an opposite-field home run to right field, giving Harvard a 1-0 advantage.
The following inning, the Crimson added insurance runs, beginning with a lead-off walk to senior Ben Skinner. Junior Quinn Hoffman followed by getting on base with a bunt down the first base line, in between the pitcher and the first baseman. Senior Patrick McColl singled home Skinner with a rip through the left side of the infield. Junior Jake Suddleson followed with a fielder's choice, scoring Hoffman from third to give the team a 3-0 advantage.
Despite a balk, which scored a Columbia runner in the ninth inning, Bigge shut the door with a strikeout, earning the complete game victory.
- Bigge earned his seventh win of the season, throwing his first-career complete game, allowing just four hits, while striking out seven. The ace also started an impressive double play in the fifth inning, snagging a liner and getting the baserunner at first.
- Hoffman led the Crimson batters with two hits, including an important bunt single and a deep double to left center.
- Senior Jake Allen caught Columbia's Jack Chernow stealing to end the threat in the sixth inning.
- With a seventh inning RBI single, McColl now trails the program-record for single-season hits by just two. The current mark was set by David Frost in 1998.
Harvard will look to clinch the Ivy League Playoff Series and earn the automatic bid to the NCAA Regionals with a win on Sunday at O'Donnell Field. Game two of the series will begin at noon and broadcast on ESPN+. A third game would begin 40 minutes following the conclusion of the first game, if necessary.