Softball Splits at Columbia; Clinches Second-Straight South Division Title

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Penn Softball Live Stats

Game 1: Columbia 8, Penn 6
Game 2: Penn 6, Columbia 8

NEW YORK, N.Y. – The University of Pennsylvania softball team (26-17, 14-4 Ivy) officially earned its second consecutive Ivy League South Division title on Saturday afternoon after splitting a road doubleheader with Columbia (22-24, 8-10). The Quakers dropped the first game after their late comeback fell short in the seventh, but took control in Game 2 with a four-run victory.

Penn’s magic number is now down to two. If the Red and Blue sweep tomorrow’s home doubleheader against the Lions, they are guaranteed homefield advantage in the Ivy League Championship Series.

Game 1
WP: Emily Kenyon (10-10), 5.1 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, 4 BB, 6 K

LP: Alexis Borden (14-9), 5.1 IP, 9 H, 8 R (6 ER), 2 K

The Lions struck first in the opening game of the series, putting one across for the early lead in the home half of the second inning – Columbia’s shortstop got to Alexis Borden for a solo shot. Penn would come back to even it up in the next half inning. Jessica Arneson led off with a walk and was replaced by pinch runner Kanani Datan. Stephanie Caso would sacrifice Datan over to second with a bunt. Finally, Sydney Turchin would slap an RBI-single through left side to knot things at one.

Columbia would put a three-spot up on the scoreboard in the bottom of the third to take the lead. With two runners in scoring position and no outs, the Lions’ leftfielder smacked a double to left, clearing the bases for two runs. Later in the inning with two outs and a runner at third, Columbia’s shortstop would hit and RBI-single, leaving Penn in a 4-1 whole through three innings.

The Quakers would get one back in the top of the fourth when Kayla Dahlerbruch hit a solo home run to trim the lead to two – the junior had a huge game, hitting two home runs and raking in four RBI. Unfortunately, the Lions would extend their lead in the home half with another couple of runs. Columbia’s centerfielder knocked in an RBI-single and would eventually score an unearned run at the end of the inning.

The Red and Blue would once again put one across in the top of the third, trimming the Columbia lead to 6-3 for the time being via a Jessica Melendez solo home run to centerfield. However, the Lions would score two more runs in the bottom of the inning, stretching their lead to 8-3 with a solo shot and an RBI-single.

Trailing by five in the top of the seventh, the Quakers needed a shot of life in order to mount a comeback. Then, with runners on the corners and two outs, Dahlerbruch would come up big once again. The junior would blast a three-run home run to left, cutting the deficit to 8-6. Melendez would reach on a single in the next at-bat, but the pinch hitter following would groundout to end the game.

Game 2
WP: Lauren Li (6-2), 7 IP, 11 H, 2 ER

LP: Brooke Darling (10-10), 7 IP, 7 H, 6 R (5 ER), 4 BB, 4 K

The nightcap of day one began slowly as each pitcher tossed three scoreless to start. Penn was first to score in the top of the fourth, but Columbia came back to even it up in the home half. With one out, Coloma would reach on a single and then steal second – her team-leading 15th of the year. The senior would score during the next at-bat when Dahlerbruch continued her stellar day with an RBI-single up the middle. Then, with two outs and the pinch runner Datan on second, Georgia Guttadauro would hit an RBI-single up the middle as well – the junior finished the second game with four RBI. Lauren Li would allow a couple runs in the next half inning on an RBI single and RBI double, but was flawless for the rest of the contest.

The Quakers would put another run across in the top of the sixth when pinch runner Karina Rios scored on a fielding error by the Columbia second baseman. Then in the top of the seventh the Red and Blue would seal the deal. With two on and two out, Guttaduaro would step into the batter’s box. The first baseman then launched her fourth home run of the season – a three-run shot – to deep right-center. That extended the lead to 6-2 in Penn’s favor. Li would toss a scoreless seventh for the complete game victory for her sixth win of the season.

Penn will be back in action tomorrow for a pair of afternoon doubleheaders at Penn Park with Game 1 schedule to begin at 12:30 p.m. The double dose will also be Senior Day for seven Quakers in what will be the regular season finale. Live stats will be available HERE for both matchups and make sure to follow @UPennSoftball for live in-game updates and conversation as well.

Download: Penn-Columbia (1) 4-26-13.pdf