If only Sunday’s loss were an April Fools joke, Penn softball would have come out of the triple-header against Brown unscathed.
Despite a tough 4-0 loss in the final of three games, the Quakers won their first Ivy series of the season on the road against the Bears. Penn came out on top in the two games on Saturday, winning the first 13-4 and the second 6-2.
Junior second baseman Sam Pederson helped lead the way in the wins, with five hits out of eight at bats between the two first games.
“I think we play a lot better when we are loose. It’s been a common theme amongst the past couple games; whenever we are having the most fun and thinking the least about trying to place the ball and what pitches are coming, we hit the best,” Pederson said.
It was in the first game, specifically, during which the Quakers' offense really shone. Brown (8-14, 2-4 Ivy), looking to prove itself in the Ivy League after an inconsistent start, could not stop this Quakers' offense.
In this first game, Penn (7-15, 4-5) scored the most runs in one game since it played Cornell in 2016. It was also the largest margin of victory against Brown since 1989. The Quakers ended game one with 14 hits, their highest this season.
“We practice as much hitting as we do defense. We focus a lot on being able to defend plays that we can run as an offense,” said Pederson.
Junior first baseman Sarah Cwiertnia and senior catcher Jurie Joyner also contributed on offense, with four and two RBI apiece. Both had big hits in the first inning to blow the game open from the get-go.
In game two, the Quakers had a rough start, with freshman pitcher Abigail Abramson allowing a home run in the bottom of the first. Abramson quickly turned it around, however, and did not allow any other runs for the next three innings. On offense, Joyner and Cwiertnia again provided a boost, combining for three RBI.
It was in the final game on Sunday that the Quakers lost their stamina. It was the fourth time this season that the Quakers didn’t get any runs. The team had six runners on base that never made it home, with the bases being loaded at one point. Freshman Ciana Curran started as pitcher for her first time in an Ivy League game and had two scoreless innings. She eventually let two runs in and was taken out of the circle.
Despite the third game loss, the series win for Penn gave the team confidence for the rest of the season.
“I feel really good about where we are as a team,” said Joyner. “I know that we are going to work really hard this week to ensure another series win.”
The Quakers play Villanova next on Wednesday, a team that Penn has yet to beat since 2003. If the Quakers can keep hitting, the team may have a fighting chance.
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