The Harvard softball team suffered five consecutive losses in the San Diego Classic II tournament this weekend to open its 12-game spring break trip in California.
The Crimson (3-9) had to play from behind this weekend against a handful of teams that began playing games in early February and had nearly three times as much game experience as Harvard up to this point.
“We traditionally play a very tough preseason schedule,” Harvard coach Jenny Allard said. “We want to play a tough schedule. We want to be battle tested. We want to learn how to succeed and we are getting tested right now.”
UTAH STATE 1, HARVARD 0
The Crimson’s seven hits matched its hit total from the previous two games, but the team failed to plate a run for the third consecutive game, spoiling the strong pitching performances of sophomore Taylor Cabe and senior Laura Ricciardone.
In the sixth inning, Harvard rallied to put runners on second and third with nobody out in one last attempt to even the score. But the Crimson could not capitalize, and the offense sputtered with a pop out, an out at the plate on a wild pitch, and a groundout to third.
Utah State (7-16) capitalized with the bases loaded in the fourth inning when second baseman Victoria Saucedo scored on a fielder’s choice to give the Aggies the only run it needed for the win.
SAN JOSE STATE 3, HARVARD 0
Spartans senior Madison Fish surrendered just two hits en route to a complete game shutout against the Crimson on the hill for San Jose State (19-11).
Ricciardone could not keep pace with Fish but only scattered three runs and eight hits over seven innings. Ricciardone minimized the damage in the first and seventh innings with timely outs to strand a pair of runners in each.
“Defensively, I thought we learned how to be really tough with runners on base,” Allard said. “We had a lot of innings where we had runners on base, and I think we really learned how to bear down in that situation.”
SANTA CLARA 3, HARVARD 0
In the bottom of the third inning, the Broncos strung together five singles to plate two runs and break a scoreless tie. Santa Clara (8-19) added a run in the fourth to take a decisive 3-0 lead.
Junior Morgan Groom shut out the Broncos in two innings of work to keep Harvard in the game. The Crimson had runners on first and second in the seventh inning with the tying run at the plate, but sophomore third baseman Catherine Callaway grounded into a double play to end the game.
NEW MEXICO STATE 7, HARVARD 2
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