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Penn softball (beat/was beaten by) LaSalle this past Wednesday at Warren Field Credit: Pete Lodato

Following back-to-back .500 finishes in Ivy play, the women’s softball team finds itself in a welcome position after its first two conference games — first place.

And if a clutch grand slam and a one-hit defensive effort in separate games this weekend are any indication, the Quakers could be sticking in the top spot for awhile.

Sweeping Brown and Yale over the weekend, the Quakers now lead the Ivy League with a 4-0 Ivy record.

After getting off to a slow start, the team has hit its stride and is now riding a six game winning streak.

Penn (9-12, 4-0 Ivy) started off its season with a limited bullpen, losing two of its strongest pitchers from last year.

However, if this weekend was any indication, filling the void on the mound has proven to be no challenge.

Sophomore Chelsea Ott pitched the first game against Brown on Friday, tossing 6.2 innings and giving up only six hits.

Ott held on to Penn’s two-run lead until the top of the seventh inning, when the Bears tied the game. Junior Taylor Tieman came in to get the final out.

The Quakers struck gold in the final inning. With the bases loaded and two outs in the bottom of the seventh, freshman Brooke Coloma hit a game-winning grand slam, giving the Red and Blue the 6-2 victory.

In the nightcap, Tieman continued her dominance on the mound. Pitching a complete game, she gave up only one hit to the Bears. The Quakers went on to win 5-0.

Penn took that momentum into its doubleheader against Yale.

Sophomore Chelsea Ott again pitched a strong five innings, but was pulled after giving up three runs in the fifth.

However, the Quakers came storming back in the bottom of the sixth, stringing together five runs on five hits to give the Red and Blue a 5-3 lead. After replacing Ott in the sixth and earning the first out in the seventh inning, sophomore Cailyn Hennessy was replaced by Tieman, who preserved the lead by securing the final two outs.

In the nightcap, Tieman contributed another stellar performance. Earning her third win in only two days, she pitched another complete game, shutting out the Bulldogs and giving up only four hits.

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