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Just five games from the end of the Harvard softball team’s 2014 season, everything was looking up for the Crimson.
Instead of staring down opposing teams’ batters from the mound, Laura Ricciardone was facing a much bigger challenge. Then a rising junior, she made the decision not to return to campus for the academic year in order to stay home and take care of her mother after she received a cancer diagnosis.
After a slight delay due to rain, the Crimson (28-15, 14-3 Ivy) hosted Dartmouth (29-16, 18-2) on Monday, dropping both games of a home doubleheader after splitting a pair of contests on Sunday in Hanover.
Harvard’s softball team headed to Dartmouth to play a crucial doubleheader on Sunday. The Crimson split the games, winning the first game 2-0 in the eighth inning and losing the second on a walk-off solo home run in the bottom of the seventh inning.
After seeing its 18-game winning streak snapped in a 2-1 loss to Boston University (26-18, 8-4 Patriot League), the Harvard softball team (27-12, 13-0 Ivy) was quick to turn the page.
Either the Crimson or the Big Green could clinch the North Division title this weekend.
The Crimson employed solid pitching and an explosive offensive attack in order to swept Yale with four convincing wins, maintaining its unblemished record in conference play.
Harvard (23-11, 9-0 Ivy) halted Princeton’s (14-22, 6-7) three-game win streak and maintained its undefeated record in the Ivy League.
Named to the second team All-Ivy in her sophomore campaign, Ricciardone has pitched at an even higher level in 2014. The Slidel, La., native is 11-5 in the circle this year and has posted a team best 1.90 ERA.
The Harvard softball team did not trail once against Brown this weekend to remain undefeated in the Ivy League.
The Harvard softball team is riding an 18-game winning streak into the final stretch of its season. With wins this weekend against Dartmouth, the squad could clinch the Division Title.
Though Ivy League play has commenced, Harvard continued its hot streak against the Rams with another dominant performance in the 5-1 victory. Junior pitcher Laura Ricciardone took the circle and the spotlight for the Crimson on the day.
The Crimson went undefeated this weekend against Penn and Columbia, winning three and storming back to tie up a game against the defending conference champion Quakers, which will be completed at a later date.
In conference play, Harvard will need more clutch hitting, especially if it hopes to overtake Dartmouth and Penn in the Ivy League standings.
Last season, then-freshman pitcher Morgan Groom started 19 games, posted the third-best ERA in the Ivy League at 2.58, and finished in the league’s top five with 96 strikeouts. Despite those electric numbers, Groom has gone from the number one option in the circle to the third for the Harvard softball team.