April 14, 2011

Crucial Four-Game Series With Dartmouth Starts Saturday

Bulldogs Enter Weekend Tied For Second Place With Brown

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NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The Yale softball team made it through its eight-games against Ivy League South opponents in good shape. The Bulldogs won five. That sets up an important four-game series with Dartmouth as Ivy North action begins this weekend. Yale and the Big Green play doubleheaders on both Saturday and Sunday, and the action gets under way at 12:30 p.m. each day.

At 5-3, the Bulldogs (13-15 overall) enter the weekend tied with Brown for second place. Both the Bulldogs and Bears trail Harvard by one game.

Yale also brings a six-game winning streak into the series, its longest winning streak since 2007. The Bulldogs have put up some impressive offensive numbers during the stretch. Yale has outscored its opponents 47-28 and is batting .361 as a team. The Bulldogs lead the league in batting (.305) and have seven players hitting better than .300, led by Jennifer Ong (.350). Christy Nelson has a team-best four home runs.

Despite that offensive prowess, it was a pitcher who was honored by the Ivy League this week. Chelsey Dunham, who earned four of the wins, was named the Rookie of the Week. She tossed 30 innings, struck out 20 and allowed only nine earned runs in five appearances.

Dunham and the rest of the pitching staff will face a stiff challenge in Dartmouth (11-14, 4-4 Ivy). The Big Green is averaging nearly 7.5 runs per game in its last nine games. Dartmouth is second in the league in home runs (23) and third in slugging percentage (.425). Evan Gray (3.85 ERA) and Hillary Barker (4.41 ERA) have handled most of the pitching duties for the Big Green.

Dartmouth won all four games last year in Hanover, despite a big weekend from Yale's Meg Johnson. Johnson hit two home runs and was 8-for-12 against the Big Green in 2010.

Report filed by Tim Bennett, Yale Sports Publicity

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