Softball Travels to Dartmouth, Harvard this Weekend

Live stats (Dartmouth) | Live stats (Harvard) | Facebook | Twitter

PHILADELPHIA - Coming on the heels of a perfect 4-0 weekend at home to start the Ivy League season, softball heads north for its first Ivy road weekend of the season. The Quakers' record (19-10, 4-0 Ivy) is the most victories softball has recorded through 29 games in program history. They are also riding their second six-game winning streak, becoming the second team in program history to have two separate winning streaks of this length. The 1981 team had separate seven and nine-game winning streaks.

Up first on the weekend will be a trip to Dartmouth on Friday for a 2 p.m. doubleheader. The Big Green (7-12, 0-4 Ivy) started out the year winning seven of 12, but have dropped seven in a row, including sweeps at the hands of Princeton and Cornell this past weekend. On Saturday, Penn makes the trip to defending Ivy League Champion Harvard. The Crimson (15-9, 3-1 Ivy) sit in first place in the North Division and after sweeping Princeton and splitting with Cornell in the first weekend.

The offense continued to show signs of improvement this past weekend and looks to be hitting its stride at just the right time. Sydney Turchin continues to set the table at the top of the order for Penn. She leads the league in runs (22), walks (18), and stolen bases (11). She is also third in the league in on-base percentage (.471) and fifth in batting average (.353). Fellow freshman Karina Rios has raised her batting average to .316 with a 10-game hitting streak. She also has three extra-base hits in her last three games, including her first career home run against Yale in the last game.

Overall, Penn has shown great patience at the plate as Kayla Dahlerbruch and Stephanie Caso are second and third in the league behind Turchin in walks. Dahlerbruch is also tied for the league lead in home runs (5) and third in the league in runs batted in (17). She maintains a .506 slugging percentage to go along with .408 on-base percentage, both top seven marks in the league. Caso drew a total of six walks in the final three games of last weekend and has an on-base percentage of .329.

Elysse Gorney is batting .294 entering the weekend and is a perfect eight-for-eight in stolen base attempts. She is also third in the league in runs (13) and fifth in hits (25). She has hit safely in nine straight games. Jessica Melendez and Brooke Coloma provided the power for the Quakers' offense this past weekend. Melendez homered three times against Brown and drove in seven runs during that doubleheader. Her five home runs have her tied for the league lead. Coloma has driven in 16 runs, which is the fifth-most in the league. She hit a grand slam against Yale to open up the scoring in that game.

Samantha Erosa brings a .408 on-base percentage into the weekend. In addition to a .269 batting average, she has walked seven times and been hit-by-pitch seven more times. She also has four sacrifice bunts this year. Jessica Arneson is leading the team with five sacrifice bunts. She has also recorded a hit in each of her last four games. Georgia Guttadauro was limited to just a pinch-hit at-bat vs. Brown. She has six RBI in her last four games and two multi-hit games in her last six.

Kristen Johnson has five hits and two RBI for Penn this year, while Laura Placentra has four hits and has reached base three times in her last 10 at-bats. Bridget Ellsworth has scored six runs this season, while Justine Payne and Vanessa Weaver each have two hits. Meg Krasne has not seen any game action to date.

In the circle, Alexis Borden (12-2, 1.18 ERA) was just named Ivy League Pitcher of the Week, her third weekly honor in the first five weeks. She leads the league in wins, ERA, shutouts (5) and innings pitched (94.2). She has 100 strikeouts, while allowing just 74 hits during that time. She has thrown a complete game in each of her last 12 starts and picked up three wins in the last Ivy League weekend after coming on in relief against Brown.

Mikenzie Voves (5-4, 2.02) is third in the league in ERA and fourth in the Ivies in wins. She has thrown 66 innings, the fifth-highest in the league and struck out 56 hitters, which is also the fifth-highest total. She has started 11 games and thrown a complete game in six of them, including one shutout. She also has a save in relief. Lindsay Mann (1-0, 2.92 ERA) worked 3.2 innings this past week, including a three inning start against La Salle where she did not allow a run. Jen Retzer has pitched in five games, starting three this season. She has thrown a total of 13.1 innings and has one victory.

Up first on Friday will be a meeting with Dartmouth. Kara Curosh leads all regulars on the Big Green with a .349 batting average. Seven different players have scored a run for Dartmouth, while Kat Hicks, Noelle Ramirez and Meghan Everett all have one home run. In the circle, Kristen Rumley (3-5, 2.78 ERA) has seen the most innings, while Hilary Barker (2-4, 4.97 ERA) and Evan Grey (1-3, 5.04 ERA) have seen basically equal time. Last season, Penn needed a pair of rallies down 7-4 in the bottom of the seventh, but managed to walk-off with two victories despite trailing in the last inning of both games.

On Saturday, the defending Ivy League champion Harvard Crimson bring the second-highest batting average in the league into play, led by three starters batting .346 or higher. Jane Alexander is batting .443 with 10 extra-base hits, 14 runs and 15 RBI. Shelbi Olson is batting .369, while reigning Ivy League Rookie of the Year Kasey Lange is hitting .346 with four home runs and 21 RBI. In the circle, Rachel Brown (9-4, 1.67) is the returning Ivy League Pitcher of the Year and has a league-best 125 strikeouts through 92 innings. Laura Ricciardone (6-5, 2.30 ERA) is allowing just over one hit per inning, but only 10 extra-base hits all year. These two pitchers have three shutouts each and have thrown almost 93 percent of the team's innings.

This weekend will be the final cross-divisional play until the two division winners play each other in the Ivy League championship series. Penn will open up South Division play next weekend with Princeton.