Softball Sets Program Record With 14th Straight Win, Sweeps Princeton, 1-0, 5-1

Softball Sets Program Record With 14th Straight Win, Sweeps Princeton, 1-0, 5-1

Kasey Lange had three RBI in Game 2 against Princeton Thursday (Gil Talbot).

– The Harvard softball team extended its winning streak to a program-record 14 games, as the Crimson took both ends of a postponed doubleheader against Ivy South Division rival Princeton Thursday, 1-0 and 5-1. Harvard improves to 23-11 on the season, eclipsing last season's win total, and ups its Ivy record to a perfect 9-0.

The day's action started in the fourth inning, picking up where the game had been suspended in the first attempt to play it. Laura Ricciardone also picked up where she left off, sitting down the Tigers in order in the fourth and fifth innings, including a looking strikeout to end the fifth. Andrea Del Conte led off the sixth with an infield single and moved to second when Kasey Lange laced a solid single to center two batters later. After a strikeout for the second out in the inning, Del Conte and Lange attempted a double steal, reaching their target bases safely and allowing Del Conte to come home on an error by the Princeton catcher.

The Tigers looked to mount an answer in the bottom of the inning, but Ricciardone masterfully pitched around a pair of singles and went onto record two K's in the final six outs to seal the 1-0 shutout victory. She finished the game with five strikeouts and just five hits allowed, securing her 12th win of the season. Del Conte and Adrienne Hume had a pair of hits each in the game to lead the Crimson.

The hosts scored their first run of the day in the second game, when pinch runner came home from third despite an attempt to cut her down at the plate for a 1-0 lead through the third inning. The Crimson mustered an immediate response in the next half inning when Catherine Callaway went with an outside pitch for a single to right field, bringing home Zoe Galindo from second base. Harvard was unable to extend its lead in the inning, but the top of the fifth proved fruitful for the guests.

Shelbi Olson led off the fifth with a single up the middle and promptly swiped second base. After the next batter made out, Lange stepped to the plate a belted a two-run home run over the right field fence, her sixth of the season, to give Harvard its first lead of the game, 3-1. The Tigers got a second out in the inning, but Ricciardone showed she can swing the bat as well, lifting a drive over the centerfield fence for a solo shot and pushing the score to 4-1. Lange plated the final run of the day in the sixth, bringing home Olson with a single through the left side.   

Ricciardone started the game and went four innings to collect her second win of the afternoon, upping her record to 13-5 on the season. Lange drove in three runs in the game to lead the Crimson, while Olson scored two times and stole two bases.

The Crimson continues its Ivy League road swing this weekend when it travels to New Haven, Conn., for a four-game series against North Division foe Yale.