Bulldogs Open Ivy Play With Two Wins
NEW YORK, N.Y. – The Yale softball team opened Ivy League play in impressive fashion. Ashley Sloan’s two-out RBI single capped a six-run sixth inning as Yale rallied from a 7-2 deficit to beat Columbia 8-7 and earn a doubleheader sweep in the Ivy League openers for both team. Kayla Kuretich tossed a five-hit shutout to lead the Bulldogs to a 6-0 victory in the first game.
Kuretich was outstanding in the circle in the opener. She struck out five in earning her third win of the season. Holly Gutterud knocked in three runs, and Meg Johnson went 3-for-3 with three runs scored to pace the offense.
The Bulldogs jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the second inning on Gutterud’s sacrifice fly to centerfield.
Christy Nelson started a two-run rally in the fourth with a double. Johnson followed with a bunt single and promptly stole second. Gutterud then delivered a two-run single to centerfield.
Sloan’s speed helped Yale manufacture a run in the fourth. She led off with an infield single and moved to second on Allie Canulli’s ground out. Sloan then stole third and scored on an error by the shortstop.
The Bulldogs added two more runs in the sixth. Johnson doubled and scored on Mariclaire Rebman’s single to center. Rebman later scored on Kelsey Warkentine’s sacrifice fly.
The situation looked bleak for Yale in the second game after Maggie Johnson’s two run single in the fourth gave Columbia a 7-2 lead. The Bulldogs’ bats, though, came alive in the sixth with the help of some defensive miscues by the Lions. Canulli started the rally by working a walk. After Lauren Huddleston reached on an error, Nelson belted her third home run of the season to cut the deficit to 7-5.
Walks to Johnson and Jennifer Ong kept the inning going, and when Lexi Peacock’s single was misplayed by the centerfielder, Yale had tied the score at 7-7. Peacock was credited with one RBI on the play. Sloan’s RBI single up the middle capped the scoring.
Gutterud pitched 4.1 innings of relief without allowing an earned run to earn the victory. She had to work out of a jam in the bottom of the seventh. With two outs, Stephanie Yagi and Aimee Kemp both singled. Gutterud, though, got Anne Marie Skylis to ground out to end the game.
Sloan went 3-for-4 with a run scored, an RBI and a stolen base for the Bulldogs, who had eights in the game.
Yale (6-11) is 2-0 in Ivy play for the first time since 2003. The Lions (0-2 Ivy) dropped to 5-16 overall with the losses.
The Bulldogs travel to Penn for a doubleheader on Saturday beginning at 2 p.m. The Quakers swept two games from Brown on Friday.
Report filed by Tim Bennett, Yale Sports Publicity