NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The Dartmouth softball team dropped the final two games of the season series to Yale, 3-2 in Game 1, before falling 6-3 in the second game of the twinbill on Sunday afternoon.
The Big Green drop to 11-24-1 overall, 10-6 in conference play, while the Bulldogs improve to 15-26 overall, 8-8 in conference play.
In Game 1, both hurlers were locked in what became a pitcher’s dual in the Elm City. For Yale, it was Lindsay Efflandt who got the start in the circle, for Dartmouth it was its ace Breanna Ethridge. The Loganville, Georgia native threw five scoreless and hitless innings with just four walks and strikeout.
The Big Green recorded just one base hit in the first and a double by Micah Schroder in the second, but could not get anything across until the top of the third. Alyssa Jorgensen was hit by a pitch and then stole second to get into scoring position. This brought Maddie Damore to the dish where she hit an RBI single to right-center, scoring Jorgensen for the 1-0 lead.
Both pitchers continued to pitch well as the team’s combined for zero hits through the fourth and fifth innings. A pair of singles put two runners on for Dartmouth in the top of the sixth via a pair of singles, but both were left on base. The Bulldogs finally got their first hit of the game in the top of sixth after two walks put runners on first and second. With a swing of the bat, Madison Stack launched a three run homer into left field to give Yale a 3-1 lead.
Trailing by two in the top of the seventh, the Big Green began a late game rally that fell just short. With one out, Calista Almer walked and advanced to second on a ground out. Damore came to the plate and smacked a double to left-center, scoring Almer to cut the Bulldogs’ lead to 3-2. Two consecutive walks loaded the bases for Dartmouth and chased Efflandt from the ball game. Terra Jerpback came into the game as well as Schroder at the plate as a pinch hitter. After a decent at bat, Schroder grounded out to second to end the game.
In Game 2, it was Ethridge who got the start again as Jerpback went to the circle for the Elis. Yale took an early 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first after Shelby Kennedy scored on a wild pitch. This would be the only run the Bulldogs would get across after Stack grounded out to end the inning.
The Big Green responded in the top of the third, tying the contest at one run apiece when Jorgensen singled to left field, scoring Lourlin Lara from second. With two outs, Jorgensen was eventually caught stealing to end the inning.
A scoreless fourth gave way to the fifth when Dartmouth took the lead for the first time in the contest. With runners on first and second, Lara hit a triple over the left fielder’s head to give the Big Green a 3-1 lead. Yale responded in its bottom half of the inning, scoring five runs off of three hits. Rachel Paris was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning before Jerpbak walked after Camille Weisenbach’s sacrifice bunt. This set up Annie Tarte for an RBI double to right-center. Shelby Kennedy then singled to the shortstop to load the bases for the next batter Laina Do, who hit a grand slam homer to left field to give the Bulldogs a 6-3 lead.
After a quick one-two-three top half of the sixth, Yale threatened to score in its turn at the plate, but Ethridge was able to get out of the inning, stranding three Bulldogs on base. Dartmouth had one last chance in the top of the seventh to extend the game, but the Big Green were retired in order.
Dartmouth returns to action next weekend to conclude the regular season with a home-and-home series with the North Division crown on the line. All four games can be seen live on the Ivy League Digital Network with Brett Franklin on the call for Saturday’s doubleheader at 2 p.m. before the series shifts to Cambridge on Sunday.