On an overcast April day at Soldiers Field, Harvard (22-12, 6-2 Ivy) took two games from visiting Holy Cross (12-17, 6-2 Patriot) in convincing fashion. Freshman third baseman Kasey Lange knocked three out of the park to propel the Ivy League-leading Crimson, and the home team coasted past Holy Cross, 8-1 and 13-4.
“It was definitely chilly out there today,” Lange said. “I’m from California, so I’m still adjusting to this New England weather. Everything worked out for me today though.”
With the two victories, Harvard has now won 10 of its last 12.
HARVARD 13, HOLY CROSS 4
The Crusaders opened game two with a pair of runs in the first and the third. But five-run bursts from the Crimson in the bottom of the fourth and the sixth innings gave the team a dominant nine-run lead. Umpires called the game at the end of the sixth on account of the mercy rule.
Harvard’s comeback was sparked by a two-run homer from Lange in the third, cutting Holy Cross’ lead down to one.
“I’ve been working hard in the cage,” Lange said. “I’m seeing the ball really well right now, so that’s always good.”
Lange struck again in the sixth, knocking in the seventh homer of the season and third of the day. She finished the game with six RBI.
Co-captain and second baseman Ellen Macadam went 2-for-2 with a pair of RBI and a steal to further catalyze the comeback-turned-mercy-rule victory. Macadam currently leads the team with a .416 batting average on the year.
“We knew we were better than them, and we knew we could hit their pitchers,” Macadam said. “We stayed calm in the dugout, played tough defense, and kept firing at the plate.”
Two key coaching decisions facilitated Harvard’s 13-run spree. Junior pitcher Mari Zumbro relieved struggling starter and classmate Julia Moore after the Crimson fell behind by four in the top of the third. Zumbro then proceeded to pitch shut-out ball for the rest of the game for her first win of the season.
In the bottom of the fourth, sophomore catcher Olivia Piccione pinch-hit for freshman outfielder Jackie Cooley and drove in the go-ahead run on a two-RBI double to put Harvard up, 5-4. This sparked a five-run inning, and Holy Cross never caught up.
Junior shortstop Jane Alexander added two RBI of her own, both off of stand-up doubles. Harvard only left four runners on base in the game, something it had been struggling with earlier in the season.
HARVARD 8, HOLY CROSS 1
Lange demonstrated her power early, going yard on an 0-2 pitch in the bottom of the first to get the Crimson started. The team never looked back on the way to a dominant 8-1 victory in the first game of the afternoon.