April 23, 2011

Bulldogs Head To Harvard For Four-Game Series

Yanagisawa Looks To Extend 22-Game Hitting Streak

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – There was much for the Yale softball team to celebrate in Wednesday's doubleheader with Wagner. Jennifer Ong belted her school record 15th double of the season in the opener, and Yale tied the school record with its 57th double of the season in the second game.

Now the Bulldogs must turn their attention to more important matters – staying in the race for the Ivy League North Division title. Yale trails first-place Harvard by four games. The Bulldogs and Crimson, though, have four games coming up. The first two are Sunday starting at 12:30 p.m. and the teams play two more on Tuesday starting at 2 p.m. Success in those games will put the Bulldogs right back in the hunt.

Yale's offense continues to impress. The Bulldogs had 16 hits in the two games with Wagner and are batting .298 as a team. Meg Johnson, who had three hits on Wednesday, has taken over the team lead in batting (.346). Katie Yanagisawa and Ong are both hitting .339, while McKynlee Westman comes in at .333.

Yanagisawa had a hit in each game against Wagner to extend her hitting streak to 22 games, which is the second-longest active streak in Division I. Stephanie Tofft of Northern Illinois has hit in 27 straight games.

To keep it going Yanagisawa will have to have success against a talented Harvard pitching staff. Rachel Brown (1.98 ERA) has 237 strikeouts in 141.1 innings pitched, while Laura Ricciardone (1.96 ERA) has struck out 68 batters in 96.2 innings.

The Crimson (26-13, 10-2 Ivy) also has a potent offense. Harvard leads the league with a .314 batting average, and freshman Kasey Lange far and away tops the league with 48 RBI.

Report filed by Tim Bennett, Yale Sports Publicity