KISSIMMEE, FLA. – The Penn softball team (3-4) saw its bats awaken on Monday morning, and they continued to surge into the afternoon as well. The Quakers swept a morning-afternoon doubleheader at the Rebel Spring Games in Kissimmee, Fla., bashing Holy Cross (0-3), 12-4, and besting Sacred Heart (3-4), 5-1. The Red and Blue totaled 22 hits on the day, breaking out from a slump that had plagued them throughout the prior tournament at Central Florida.
WP: Lauren Li (1-0), 3 IP, 3 H, ER, K
LP: Julia Barrett (0-2), 3 IP, 8 H, 3 ER (10 R), 2 BB, K
After a quiet first inning in which both teams went down in order, the Quakers bats were jumpstarted by a couple Crusader errors in the top of the second. Penn scored three runs on four hits and two errors, led by Brooke Coloma’s (2-for-2, 2 R, 2B, SB) leadoff double to deep left center. Jess Melendez (2-for-3, 2 R, RBI) followed that with an infield single to the shortstop.
Korinne Raby (2-for-2, 2 R, 2 RBI, BB, HR) loaded the bases with a single between third and short as well. The Holy Cross third baseman accounted for both throwing errors in the inning. Her first allowed Bridget Ellsworth (0-for-3, 2 R, RBI) to reach safely and Coloma to score. The second came a few plays later, allowing Vanessa Weaver (1-for-2, R, 2 RBI, BB, 2B) to grab an extra base after the errant throw following her double – Ellsworth and Raby both scored on the play.
The Quakers followed up their three-run inning with a seven-run explosion in the top half of the third on four hits and two Holy Cross errors. Stephanie Caso (1-for-4, R, 2B) led off with a double to left center, and was brought home by the next batter, Kayla Dalerbruch (1-for-3, R, RBI, 2B), who also hit a double. Coloma was next up, and she reached safely with a single to left, advancing Dalerbruch to third. With runners on the corners, Coloma stole second, allowing her teammate to trot home for a run. A couple more RBIs from Melendez and Ellsworth and unearned runs scored by Sydney Turchin (0-3, R), Weaver and Ellsworth, and Penn had scored seven.
The Red and Blue got two more across in the fourth via Raby’s two-run blast to deep center field, widening the gap to 10 runs. They needed to get through the next inning allowing two runs or less in order for the eight-run rule to come into effect after five innings. Penn did just that, giving up two runs in the bottom of the fifth, allowing the game to be called early.
WP: Alexis Borden (1-3), 7 IP, 6 H, ER, 3 BB, 10 K, 2 WP
LP: Taylor Lane (1-1) 2.1 IP, 7 H, 3 ER, BB, K
Borden earned her first win of the season on Monday afternoon, pitching her fourth complete game in as many chances. The sophomore was extremely close to shutout if not for her two wild pitches in the top of the first inning. Melendez (2-for-3, R, RBI) came through in a two-out situation to even the game at one in the bottom half of the first with her RBI single to left centerfield.
The second inning went scoreless for both teams, as it looked like we could be in for a pitchers’ duel. In the bottom of the third inning, though, Penn exploded for four runs on five hits. Jess Arneson (1-for-3, R, RBI) finally cracked the stat sheet with her first hit of the season, scoring Melendez on the RBI single. Caso (2-for-2, R, 2 RBI) followed that with a two-RBI single through the left side – she would eventually score on an RBI single from Turchin (2-for-4, RBI).
The rest of the game went smoothly for Borden, as she totaled six innings of shutout ball. The reigning Ivy League Rookie of the Year would finish the contest with 10 strikeouts, just two off her career high from last season.
Penn will be back on the field for day two of the Rebel Spring Games. The Quakers will face Loyola-Illinois at 9 a.m. and South Dakota at 11 a.m. Live stats for both games will be available HERE and follow @UPennSoftball for a live blog of both games as well.