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McEachern Leads Softball's Home Opening Sweep Over Columbia

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By Mark Washburn

HANOVER, N.H.  –  Sophomore Katie McEachern led the Big Green with six hits, including a big two-run homer, as the Dartmouth softball team swept Columbia, 8-1 and 4-3, on Friday afternoon at the Dartmouth Softball Park.

McEachern was a perfect 4-for-4 with a two-run homer in the first game and then added two more hits in the second to lead the Big Green to a perfect 6-0 record in Ivy League play. The team also moved three games over .500 and are now 16-13 overall.

Freshman Karen Chaw also sent a blast over the left center wall in the third inning of the opening contest.  Junior Kristen Rumley picked up her 10th win of the season in the 8-1 win and then closed out the final outs for her third save of the season.

In the first game, Dartmouth scored runs in the first four innings and then added an insurance marker in the sixth with McEachern’s shot.

Freshman Chloe Madill led off with a walk and then scored on a double by Rumley. The Big Green loaded the bases on a single by McEachern and a walk by sophomore Kelsey Miller and then added their second run on a seven-pitch walk by freshman Maddie Damore.

In the second, Columbia cut the deficit with an RBI double by Liz Caggiano. In the bottom of the stanza, McEachern picked up her second hit with an RBI single to left field, to give the Big Green a 3-0 lead.  Chaw extended the lead with a solo blast in the following frame. 

Dartmouth scored two more runs on three hits in the fourth, but left three runners on.  After walks to Madill and Rumley, McEachern singled up the middle to put runners in scoring position. The next batter, sophomore Morgan McCalmon singled to score Madill and then Damore singled up the middle to plate Rumley.

Leading 6-1 in the sixth, Rumley walked on six pitches and was pinch run by senior Alex St. Romain. Looking to increase her batting average, McEachern stepped up to the plate and unleashed a deep home run into the snowy center field forest.

Rumley was at her best in the circle with eight strikeouts and just one walk allowed. McCalmon relieved her in the seventh and pitched a quick 1-2-3 innings.

McCalmon took the ball for the second game and retired the first nine batters. In 5.0 innings, McCalmon allowed one unearned run on three hits and fanned three hitters.

The Big Green once again scored in the opening frame as Chaw plated Rumley and McCalmon on a single to the outfield.  The hosts added another run in the third with runners in scoring position as senior Kara Curosh sent a single to left field to score Damore who walked.

The Lions offence began to come alive in the fourth, with a single by Alix Cook who advanced to third on a defensive error and then scored on a sacrifice fly RBI by Kayla Shimoda.

Dartmouth added the eventual game-winning run in the fifth on a groundout RBI by Curosh. 

Columbia forced Dartmouth to use three pitchers in the seventh inning, as the Lions scored twice on three hits. Rumley got the final two outs for her third consecutive save in Ivy play.

The Big Green will host Penn on Saturday with the doubleheader beginning at 12:30 p.m.