PHILADELPHIA - The Quakers look to extend their season-best five-game win streak this weekend when they begin the second week of Ivy League play by traveling to face Yale on Saturday and then Brown on Sunday in a pair of doubleheaders beginning at noon.
Penn is 13-10 on the season and a perfect 4-0 to start league play. The Bulldogs are 13-10 overall and went 2-2 in the Ivy League last week while Brown is just 3-17 with a 1-3 mark in league play.
Last Time Out: Close Call
The Quakers picked up Keystone College in a mid-week game on Wednesday and nearly got upset by the Giants before finishing with the 8-7 victory. The Red and Blue jumped out to a 4-0 lead after one inning but allowed the Giants to come back and eventually grab a 7-5 lead. Penn tied the game up with a pair of unearned runs and then took back the lead in the bottom of the eighth with a two-out single from Brandon Engelhardt to score junior Derek Vigoa.
Following the Red and Blue
Fans can follow the Quakers at Yale through live stats by clicking here or follow Yale student radio here. Live stats will be available (click here) for Brown and a live blog.
Scouting the Quakers
Penn is now hitting .284 on the season and has scored eight runs or more in four of the team's last five games. Senior Jeremy Maas leads the team with a .424 average and also leads the team in slugging percentage (.652), on-base percentage (.490), hits (39), runs (23), home runs (5) and is tied for the team lead in steals with eight. Freshman Brandon Engelhardt and junior Derek Vigoa are also hitting over .300 this year. Engelhardt is batting .330 and leads the team with 19 RBI, including an impressive 16-for-31 mark (.516) with runners in scoring position. Vigoa is hitting .301 overall, but has been on a tear as of late, batting .394 over his last ten contests with a .444 on-base percentage
On the Mound
The Red and Blue will send the same four starters to the mound as last weekend. Last weekend senior Paul Cusick and Vince Voiro tossed complete games as Cusick struck out 12 and Voiro fanned nine batters. On the season Cusick has a 2.87 ERA while Voiro is just ahead of him at 2.65. They are also ranked second and third in the Ivy League with 44 and 41 strikeouts respectively. Penn's other two starters are lefties Matt Gotschall and Chris McNulty. A freshman, Gotschall has a 3.86 ERA with 22 strikeouts and 11 walks in 28.0 innings. McNulty has a 5.04 ERA in five starts this season and has 18 strikeouts to 11 walks in 30.1 innings of work.
Scouting the Bulldogs
Hitting: Yale comes into the weekend with a .278 team batting average but has five players hitting over .300. Josh Scharff leads the team with a .354 average,. 583 slugging percentage and .456 on-base percentage. The Bulldogs don't really hit for power, with only nine home runs, however they do have 41 doubles and average six runs per game. Andy Megee has also been key for the team this year, batting .327 with a team-high 32 hits, 19 runs and eight doubles. He also has a pair of home runs and is 10-for-13 in stolen base attempts.
Pitching: Yale's pitching staff is led by a pair of aces with three wins apiece. Brook Hart leads the team with a 1.95 ERA and is 3-2 in five starts. He has gone the distance in three games this year and has 26 strikeouts and seven walks in 32.1 innings of work. Vinny Lally has been equally impressive with a 3-0 record and 3.03 ERA in 38.2 innings. He has two complete games and leads the Ivy League with 46 strikeouts, however he does have 21 walks on the year. Pat Ludwig is tied for third on the team with four starts and has a 4.56 ERA in 23.2 innings.
Scouting the Bears
Hitting: Brown is hitting .217 this year with only player batting .300. The Bears are also slugging .295 and have an on-base percentage of .293. Mike DiBiase is the team's top hitter, batting .300 with 18 hits, three doubles, one home run and six RBI. John Sheridan has also poven key for Brown, batting .288 with 17 hits and nine steals on the year.
Pitching: The Bears' three wins this season have come from three different pitchers and the team has a collective ERA of 7.67. Starters Matthew Kimball and Kevin Carlow have been the most consistent hurlers. Kimball is 0-4 but has a 4.85 ERA in 26.0 innings of work with 13 strikeouts and four walks. Carlow, meanwhile, has 11 strikeouts and ten walks with a 5.48 ERA in 21.1 innings of action.
100 Hits and Counting
Senior Will Davis recorded his 100th hit on Sunday and became one of four active Quakers with over 100 hits. Junior Derek Vigoa has 127 career hits while Maas has 130 and Williams is the active leader with 184. Davis also hit his 22nd career home run over the weekend, moving him into a tied with William Gordon for second all-time in school history.
Second to One
With his eight hits over the weekend, senior Dan Williams moved into second place on the school's all-time hit list. The senior surpassed Nate Moffie (183) and now has 184 career hits, just ten shy of matching Nick Italiano's school record of 194 set back in 2003. Williams is also fourth all-time in runs scored with 124 and fifth in doubles with 36.
Late Inning Lockdown
Penn's bullpen arms threw 12.1 innings over the weekend and allowed just one earned run for an ERA of 0.73. Relievers Patrick Brennan, Cody Thomson, John Beasley and Alex Ott all threw at least two innings over the four games. In those 12.1 innings they combined to walk one batter and strike out eight.
Freshman Brandon Engelhardt has reached base safely in every game of his college career. The second baseman currently has an eight-game hit streak going and has reached base by a hit or walk in all 23 games this year. There have only been three games this year in which he did not record a hit.
After struggling with their offense to open the season the Quakers have scored eight runs in four of the team's last five games. During that span the team is hitting .313, slugging .500 and has an on-base percentage of .379. Penn has hit six home runs and 12 doubles during that span, but has also manufactured runs as evidenced by the team's 12-for-13 mark in steals.