Nobody's perfect. Well, nobody except for Jennifer Brann on Sunday.
Brann, a junior pitcher for Penn softball, threw the program's second-ever perfect game in the team's series-finale win against Brown. Brann's historic performance capped off the sweep for the Quakers, as they also beat the Bears in Saturday's doubleheader.
This three-game set was Penn's final home series of the season. The Quakers (21-14, 12-6 Ivy) are currently third in the Ivy League in win percentage, while Brown (10-21, 3-12) is tied for seventh in the League with Cornell. The sweep for the Red and Blue comes after a loss against Saint Joseph’s on Wednesday.
In the first game of the series on Saturday, the Quakers beat the Bears, 6-3. Brown scored three runs in the second inning, but that’s where its offensive production ended. Penn, on the other hand, strung together six runs in the game. Freshman center fielder Emma Nedley scored two runs, one in the fourth and one in the fifth inning. Freshman pitcher Julia Longo pitched all seven innings, and the defense did a nice job of backing her up, committing just one error.
Saturday’s second game was closer, but the Red and Blue managed to pull off the 4-3 win. The first four innings featured a pitcher's duel, as neither team scored a run. Brann threw 4.1 innings and gave up just one run, an outing that would foreshadow her perfect game on Sunday.
Entering the seventh frame, Penn was trailing by one run. The group rallied, with Nedley knocking in sophomore right fielder Kayla Ketring to tie the game at three. The next batter, freshman left fielder Corrie Phillips, had the chance to end the game — and that's exactly what she did. Phillips came up clutch and drove in senior shortstop Jessica England to walk it off.
Sophomore pitcher Abigail Abramson picked up the win for Penn. She pitched the last two frames and allowed no runs to hold the Bears at three until the end of the contest.
As successful as Saturday was for the Quakers, Sunday turned out to be even better. Brann's perfect game included 10 strikeouts, and the offense gave her some breathing room, even though she needed very little. After scoring three runs in the third inning, the Red and Blue extended the lead to five when junior Clare Sebastianelli hit a pinch-hit two-run home run.
Brann's perfect game comes seven years after Alexis Borden threw Penn's first-ever on May 2, 2012. The performance also marks Brann's 11th career complete game.
Penn's Senior Day was also this weekend, as the home fans said goodbye to Sam Pederson, Sarah Cwiertnia, Hannah Gibbons, and England. Up next for the team is a Thursday meeting against Drexel before the Quakers travel to Columbia for their final Ivy series of the regular season.
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