The Harvard baseball team picked up two victories over Ivy League rival Brown on Friday at O’Donnell Field, downing the Bears, 7-4 and 4-2.
With its fifth and sixth league wins, the Crimson snapped a two-game losing streak and moved into second place behind Dartmouth in the Red Rolfe Division of the Ivy League.
“We came in, knew we had to sweep, and took care of business,” sophomore captain Andrew Ferreira said. “It feels pretty good, especially because it was our first sweep of the year.”
HARVARD 4, BROWN 2
For Harvard, a late spark from the bench was enough to beat the Bears in the second game of the doubleheader.
In the first pitch of an eighth-inning at-bat, Crimson sophomore pinch hitter Carlton Bailey knocked a two-run ground rule double inning to break the 2-2 tie and pull Harvard (11-27, 7-9 Ivy) ahead of Brown (8-29, 5-11).
“I was hoping he would get one out to the outfield,” Walsh said. “I had no idea he would put one up the centerfield fence.”
In his only at-bat Saturday, Bailey, who has seen little playing time in his last four games as he recovers from a knee injury, gave Harvard a much-needed boost.
“He’s been clutch all year,” sophomore co-captain Andrew Ferreira said. “He came in and really stepped up for us. It was huge.”
Walsh explained that an Ivy League team traveling rule gave him some flexibility with lineup adjustments.
“It’s a nice advantage when Brown can dress only 20 guys and we have our team, so we were able to make some moves in both games,” Walsh said. “Getting some pinch hitters and pinch runners in helped us.”
The Bears scored first in a four-hit second inning, as sophomore infielder J.J. Franco grounded into a double play that advanced freshman outfielder Will Marcal home from third.
The Crimson answered in a two-run third inning, with junior second baseman Kyle Larrow and senior infielder Jeff Reynolds recording RBIs on singles to right field.
Brown tied the game at 2-2 in the top of the sixth inning when sophomore catcher Wes Van Boom scored after his triple to left-center field. But thanks to solid defense and relief pitching, the Crimson held the Bears scoreless in the visitors’ final four at-bats, and a Harvard rally in the bottom of the eighth clinched the win.
Harvard senior starting pitcher Conner Hulse tallied six strikeouts and allowed two runs on seven hits and two errors in game two. In two innings of relief action, sophomore right-hander Baron Davis allowed no hits and no runs to earn the win.