The Harvard softball seniors just didn’t want the game to end.
In the team’s final contest of the year, and the seniors’ last game, the Crimson (22-20-1, 7-5 Ivy) fell to a tough Boston College (31-21, 9-9 Big East) squad 5-2 in 13 innings.
For six innings, Harvard had held the Eagles scoreless and allowed only three hits. With a 2-0 lead and co-captain ace Kara Brotemarkle coming to the circle to close the seventh inning, it appeared that the Crimson would finally take one from their cross-town rivals.
But Ashley Obrest, the inning’s first batter, sent Brotemarkle’s offering over the fence in left for a lead-halving home run.
Brotemarkle dropped her head and took off her glove, while sophomore catcher Erin Halpenny and coach Jenny Allard came out to calm her.
Still flustered, Brotemarkle walked the next batter, Erin Mackey, and Sara Kellner came in to run.
After a sacrifice bunt moved Kellner to second, Elise Meredith sent a hard grounder to co-captain second baseman Sara Williamson and all hell broke loose.
Williamson fielded the ball cleanly, but her throw to junior Cecily Gordon at first was low. Unable to come up with the toss, Gordon went to the ground to grab the rolling ball.
By the time she had it in her hand, Meredith was safe at first, and Kellner had rounded third and was heading home.
Gordon popped up and threw to Halpenny at the plate, but the ball arrived late and Kellner scored the game-tying run. Halpenny then gunned down Meredith, who was attempting to move to second amid the action at home.
“I screwed up,” Williamson said, “and cost my team the game.”
Brotemarkle got Elena Ferrero to fly out to sophomore center fielder Kerry Flaherty to keep the score tied and give the offense a chance to take back the game in the bottom of the inning.
“After they scored that second run, all I wanted to do was stop them from scoring any more,” Brotemarkle said.
Leading off, Williamson hit the ball right on the nose, but right at BC’s left fielder.
Halpenny grounded out, but senior shortstop Rachel Goldberg worked an 0-2 count to 2-2 and then dumped a single into left. Freshman Julia Kidder, solid all year, came up with a clutch shot into center that put runners on first and second with two outs.