Rhianna Rich has 43 hits this year, second-most in the Ivy League (Fran Ruchalski).
Harvard (20-14, 9-3 Ivy) vs. Brown (16-16, 5-7 Ivy)
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The Harvard softball team (20-14, 9-3 Ivy) enters the final two weeks of the regular season with a short road trip to Rhode Island to face Providence (15-22) Thursday before hosting Brown at Soldiers Field for a four-game series Saturday and Sunday.
Game time against the Friars is set for 5 p.m. with a broadcast of the game being provided by Providence Athletics. Fans can watch this weekend's series against North Division rival Brown on the Ivy League Digital Network. First pitch of both doubleheaders is set for 12:30 p.m.
Last Time Out
Harvard traveled to Yale over the weekend, taking three of four from the Bulldogs, improving to 9-3 in the Ivy League. The Crimson posted shutouts in the opening game and the series finale, while also taking game two of the series, 5-4.
The Crimson's pitching staff was phenomenal during the series. Freshman Kathleen Duncan allowed just one hit in six scoreless innings to pick up her first career victory Sunday. Morgan Groom worked two complete games, posting a 0.50 ERA with one shutout and 10 total strikeouts. Taylor Cabe earned Harvard's third win of the weekend to improve to 11-3.
Harvard's offense has found its motor from a sophomore and two freshmen this season. Sophomore Maddy Kaplan leads the team and is third in the Ancient Eight with a .420 batting average. The Santa Monica, California native has 11 multi-hit games this year, including a team-best four in which she has had three hits. Her .475 on-base percentage is second in the Ivy League.
Freshman Rhianna Rich has the most multi-hit games with 13 this year and ranks second on the team, and eighth in the conference with a .361 average. Rich's 43 hits are second-most in the Ivy League while her 30 runs scored are tied for the league's best. Fellow rookie Meagan Lantz put together a 19-game hit streak from March 15 at Loyola Marymount until April 16 at Yale and has a .347 average this season. Her 31 RBI leads the team and is third-most in conference.
Burning the Base Paths
Harvard's 39 stolen bases leads the Ivy League by six over Princeton and Penn. Senior Zoe Galindo has set the benchmark with nine steals, fourth in the Ivy League. Lantz is 7-for-7, while Dallas Hogan has seven swipes in eight attempts.
Harvard's pitching staff has kept opposing batters to an average of .279, the second-lowest mark in the Ivy League. It's 3.64 staff ERA is third-best in the conference led by Morgan Groom's 2.26 which ranks second in the Ivy.
Follow the Leader
Who holds the top statistical marks for the Crimson this year?
Brown and Harvard will each play at Providence this week before their weekend series. The Bears will face the Friars Wednesday evening, with the Crimson taking Glay Field Thursday.
The Friars dropped two of three games at home to fellow Big East Conference member St. John's over the weekend. The Red Storm shutout Providence twice in the series, dropping the Friars to 2-9 in the Big East, tied for last place with Georgetown.
Freshman Emma Lee heads up the Providence offense with a .413 average. Senior Kiki Baldassari is second on the team with .362 mark and a team-high 46 hits. Junior Nicole Lundstrom has 13 more RBI than the second-most on the team with 29. In the circle, sophomore Christina Ramirez is an even 7-7 and has a 3.82 ERA in 19 appearances. Freshman Megan McCune has a team-low 2.65 ERA and a 4-2 record.
Providence has the lead in the all-time series, 21-12-1, with wins in the last two meetings in April of 2012 and 2013. Harvard's last win in the series was a 4-3 triumph March 5, 2011.
The Bears were swept last weekend by Dartmouth, pushing its current losing streak to six games, its overall record to 16-16 and its Ivy mark to 5-7. During the Dartmouth series, Brown was outscored 17-6 by the Big Green, never scoring more than two runs in any of the four games.
Brown has the highest team batting average in the conference at .307. Junior Julia Schoenewald ranks fourth in the Ivy League with a .398 average, driving in 15 runs and hitting two homers. Freshman Ashli Lotz is hitting at a .356 clip and is tied for the team-lead with 21 RBI with junior Christina Andrews.
The Bears 2.88 pitching staff ERA ranks second in the league with sophomore Katie Orona and junior Gina Chieffallo each holding 2.55 ERAs. Orona has an 8-7 record with 11 complete games, while striking out a team-high 74 batters.
Harvard leads the all-time series, 56-34, after winning three of the games in last year's four-game set at Brown.
Ivy League Digital Network
The Ivy League Digital Network returns for a third season as the home for all live streaming and on-demand video content for each of the conference's eight institutions. Broadcast in full HD and featuring a live score bug and play-by-play and color commentary, the Ivy League Digital Network provides fans with unprecedented access to the Ancient Eight.
Multiple subscription options are available to fans, including school-specific and league-wide passes. To learn more about the Ivy League Digital Network or to sign-up today, click here.
Use the Social Stream on GoCrimson.com to stay connected with the Crimson on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube this year. The Social Stream brings the conversation from all four platforms into one convenient location, allowing fans of all Harvard Athletics teams to monitor the action in real time.