Brown’s 12 K’s Helps Softball to 5-0 Victory, 1-0 Series Lead Over Cornell

Rachel Brown against Cornell in Game 1 of the 2011 Ivy League Championship Series
Rachel Brown against Cornell in Game 1 of the 2011 Ivy League Championship Series

Rachel Brown earned her 21st victory of the year with a complete-game shutout of Cornell Saturday (Harvard Athletic Communications).

Rachel Brown Postgame Comments

Full Video of Game 1

While the weather washed away hopes of playing two games, the Harvard softball team didn't let a two-hour and 48-minute rain delay break its stride, blanking Ivy League South Division champs Cornell, 5-0, in Game 1 of the 2011 Ivy League Championship Series Saturday at Soldiers Field.

The win marks Harvard's first shutout victory in an Ivy Championship game since a 4-0 blanking of Penn in Game 1 of the 2007 championship. It also gives Harvard 35 wins this year, a new school record for victories in a season.

Ellen Macadam helped Harvard get to Cornell starter Elizabeth Dalrymple early, punching a single to right to start the game for the Crimson. Macadam promptly stole second and moved to third on a Stephanie Regan sacrifice bunt. Regular-season RBI leader Kasey Lange picked up her first postseason RBI with a sacrifice fly to right, putting Harvard up 1-0.

Harvard manufactured another run in the third inning, which began with Shelbi Olson reaching second on a throwing error by the Big Red third baseman. The rain came swiftly after and halted play for nearly three hours, but the Crimson didn't have much trouble staying loose during the delay. Play resumed with a Macadam sacrifice bunt to move Olson to third and Regan pushed the score to 2-0 with Harvard's second sacrifice fly of the game.

Rachel Brown did a stellar job keeping the Big Red bats quiet, not allowing more than one hit in any inning of Game 1. The offense further padded her lead in the bottom of the fifth when Olson and Regan reached base with a double and single, respectively. Rookie catcher Allison Scott laced a two-strike pitch to left field that dropped just in front of a sliding outfielder, bringing home two runs on the play. Ashley Heritage followed with a single down the left field line to bring in Harvard's fifth run of the game, sealing the 5-0 win.

Brown allowed just three hits in her complete-game shutout, sitting down 12 Big Red batters while walking just three. Lange and Regan both finished 1 for 1 with an RBI and Heritage was the only player in the game to record multiple hits with a pair of base hits.

The series will resume Sunday morning with Game 2 beginning at 11 a.m., and if necessary, Game 3 starting 30 minutes after the end of Game 2.