April 12, 2008
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Jennifer Francis homered in each game to lift Harvard to an Ivy League doubleheader sweep of Yale at Dewitt Family Field. Francis's two-run home run in the fourth inning of the first game snapped a scoreless tie and helped lead the Crimson to a 7-0 victory. In the second game, Francis belted a two-run homer in the seventh inning to cap the scoring in a 4-1 Harvard victory. Lauren Huddleton had two hits and Katie Yanagisawa added an RBI triple in the nightcap for the Bulldogs.
Between games there was a ceremony to commemorate the renaming of the Yale Coaches Award in honor of Andy Van Etten. Van Etten, who passed away nearly one year ago, is the winningest softball coach in Yale history. In his 10 years in charge, the Bulldogs won 234 games, more than double the number of any other coach in school history.
In 1999, Van Etten initiated the Coaches Award, presented annually to the Yale player who best represents the ideals of Yale Softball that go beyond statistics; the player who has shown commitment and dedication through her actions on and off the field, whether as a role player or starter. Starting this year, when it is presented at the team banquet in May, the award will be called the Andy Van Etten Coaches Award. Yale head coach Barbara Reinalda, Associate Athletic Director Amy Backus and Yale Softball Association President Kristen Gengaro presented a replica of the award to Van Etten's wife Monica.
The first game was scoreless for three innings until the Crimson (16-15, 7-3 Ivy) broke through in the fourth. Hayley Bock walked, and Francis followed with a homer over the right-field fence.
Yale (13-19, 2-8 Ivy) threatened in the bottom of the fourth. Holly Gutterud singled with one out. After the second out, Mariclaire Rebman singled and Allie Canulli walked to load the bases. Harvard pitcher Shelly Madick, though, retired the next hitter to end the rally.
The Crimson then scored three times in the sixth and twice in the seventh to seal the victory.
Madick went the first five innings for Harvard, allowed five hits and struck out five. Margaux Black pitched the final two innings. Aracelis Torres, Ashley Sloan and Katie Edwards also had hits for the Bulldogs.
The second game was a pitcher's duel between Harvard's Dana Roberts and Rebecca Wojciak, who kept the Crimson off the board for the first three innings.
Harvard scored twice in the fourth on Melissa Schellberg's two-run single.
Yale pulled to within 2-1 in the fifth. Canulli led off with a walk, but was erased on Courtney Blachford's fielder's choice. Yanagisawa then tripled down the right-field line to score Blachford. Torres followed by drawing a walk, but Roberts retired the next hitter to avoid further damage.
Francis then belted her second homer of the day, this one to left-centerfield, to give the Crimson a 4-1 lead.
The Bulldogs had the tying run on base in the bottom of the seventh but were unable to score.
Yale stranded 10 runners in the game.
The same two teams will play a doubleheader on Sunday beginning at 12:30 p.m. Free audio of the games can be heard at wybc.com.
Report filed by Tim Bennett, Yale Sports Publicity