Even with no postseason in sight, there were still enough strategic adjustments during Tuesday afternoon’s (May 1) season finale to make the Harvard baseball team’s last game of 2007 a dramatic one. And in the end, a successful one as well for the host Crimson squad, who protected a 4-3 edge versus Northeastern to close out the year at .500 (18-18 overall).
With Harvard holding the single-run lead in the top of the ninth, Northeastern called upon Alex Fox to pinch run on second. Moments later, Harvard head coach Joe Walsh sent pitcher Brad Unger ’08 to the mound, who promptly intentionally walked top Husky slugger Mike Tamsin to load the bases. The Crimson held steady, however, when Unger induced a high foul ball just a few pitches later. Chris Rouches ’10 made the catch for the final out to clinch the game, handing Unger his first save of the season.
Regrettably, the Crimson victory could do little to remedy the team’s losses against Dartmouth this past weekend (April 28-29), which effectively knocked Harvard out of contention for the Red Rolfe Division championship and the chance to play for the Ivy League title. Harvard split the four game series with the Big Green to fall to 12-8 in Ancient Eight play — two wins short of what the team needed to surpass Brown in the standings. The Bears, meanwhile, will face Gehrig Division leader Penn in a best-of-three playoff series.
Just around the same time of Tuesday’s game, the Harvard softball team was scoring a bit of revenge for their male counterparts, rallying past host Dartmouth, 11-8, in the nightcap of a key doubleheader. With her team trailing 7-5 in the top of the sixth, Crimson freshman Melissa Schellberg smashed a three-run homer to help the Crimson clinch the Ivy League North Division championship. Falling to the Big Green in the opening game, 3-2, the win secured a spot for the Crimson (28-13, 13-6 Ivy League) in this weekend’s Ivy championship series opposite South Division champion Penn.
As the Gazette went to press, the women of Cambridge were busy battling for homefield advantage in the upcoming series by hosting the Big Green for a couple of innings. The teams, forced to halt an April 28 game in the fifth inning due to rain, resumed play Wednesday (May 2) with the score tied 4-4. A win gives the Crimson hosting rights for the championship series against Penn. A Dartmouth victory, meanwhile, would force Harvard to travel to Philadelphia for the games. Regardless where, the best-of-three series will be held this Saturday (doubleheader beginning at 1 p.m.) and Sunday (3 p.m., if necessary). Checkhttp://www.gocrimson.com for softball results.