Bulldogs Salvage Split At Brown, But Not Enough To Keep Pace With Dartmouth
PROVIDENCE, R.I. — With the Ivy League's Red Rolfe Division crown on the line this weekend, along with a spot in the Ivy League Championship series, the Yale University baseball team needed only to keep pace with Dartmouth to ensure at least one additional game this season.
Unfortunately for the Bulldogs, they ran into a Brown pitching staff that proved that it was up to the challenge of playing spoiler.
After falling in both games Friday on Senior Day at historic Yale Field to Brown, Yale traveled to Providence needing to win both games of the final Ivy League doubleheader of the regular season to keep its hopes alive of remaining in contention for the Rolfe Division title.
For the third consecutive game, the Bulldogs were hampered by a strong pitching performance by Brown's starting pitcher and could not string together enough clutch hits to pull out the victory.
Brown's starter, Matthew Kimball, tossed a complete game in the opener of the doubleheader Saturday, limiting Yale to one run on six hits with six strikeouts as Yale dropped the opener 6-1. The Yale bats came alive in Game 2, using two six-run innings to outrun the Bears 18-8, but the one victory in the four-game series against Brown proved to be not enough in the race with Dartmouth for the Rolfe Division title.
Brown's three wins in the four games, combined with Dartmouth's sweep of Harvard in the opening doubleheader of that four-game series, eliminated Yale from the Rolfe Division race, allowing Dartmouth to clinch its fourth-consecutive Rolfe Division title.
Brown jumped on the scoreboard in the bottom of the inning when Mike DiBiase was hit by a pitch and scored on Wes Van Boom's RBI double to tie the game.
Brown then scored three runs in the fourth inning and two more in the fifth to put the game out of reach for the Bulldogs.
Kolmar doubled twice in three at-bats to lead the Yale offense in the opening game.
John Sheridan, Graham Tyler, Josh Feit, and Van Boom each had two hits to lead Brown.
The clutch hits that eluded the Bulldogs in the first three games finally came In the second game.
Yale sent 10 batters to the plate in a six-run fourth inning that broke a 2-2 tie and put the Bulldogs ahead 8-2. Yale had five hits in the inning, including a clutch two-run double by Andy Megee and an RBI single by Jacob Hunter.
Brown jumped back in the game with a four-run sixth inning that trimmed Yale's lead to 9-7, but the Bulldogs bounced right back with six more runs in the seventh inning to put the game out of reach.
Megee and Trey Rallis each had RBI singles in the inning. Charlie Neil doubled to lead off the inning and scored on Cale Hanson's bases-loaded walk. Kolmar was hit by a pitch and scored on Megee's single and Elmore reached on that error and scored on Rallis' single. Hunter later added a two-run single that drove in the fifth and sixth runs of the inning, giving Yale a 15-7 lead.
Yale tacked on three more runs in the ninth inning, two coming off of Kolmar's two-run double and the last off of Elmore's RBI single to cap the scoring.
The Bulldogs pounded out 19 hits in the season finale. Megee was 4-for-6 with four RBIs, while Rallis, Hunter, Neil and Elmore each added three hits. Every Yale batter except Hanson had a hit, but Hanson walked three times, driving in one run, and scored three runs. Eight batters had at least one RBI and eight batters scored at least one run.
However, it was not enough to extend the Bulldogs' season.
Ten seniors will graduate from a squad that gave Yale its best chance at contending for the Ivy League championship since the 1995 season. All 10 seniors will be sorely missed from the team when it returns to the field in the fall.
Report filed by Jon Erickson Jr., Yale Sports Publicity