Seven innings just weren’t enough for the Yale and Marist softball teams Wednesday.
The Bulldogs (14-14-1, 1-3 Ivy) dropped two extra-innings games, 3-2 and 2-1, to the Red Foxes (7-14-1) in Poughkeepsie, N.Y. The Eli squad struggled all afternoon at the plate and in the field, dropping its fifth game in its last six. In contrast, Marist freshman Nichole Rawson carried her team in both games, going 5-6 with four RBIs on the afternoon.
“She beat us in the first game single-handedly,” said head coach Andy Van Etten, who last year recruited Rawson to play at Yale.
In the first game, Rawson went 4-4, including a solo home run that tied the game at two in the bottom of the fifth. Three innings later, Rawson singled in Katherine McEvily, giving her the RBI on all three of Marist’s runs.
Despite Rawson’s heroics, the Bulldogs were disappointed with Wednesday’s effort.
“We just didn’t come out ready to play today, and we lost two games to a team that wanted it more than we did,” captain Laura Beckert ’03 said. “They just came up with a big hit in the bottom of both eighth innings.”
Rawson also pitched for Marist in the first game, giving up five hits and striking out four.
“She did a pretty good job keeping us off balance at the plate,” Beckert said.
Eli starter Jillian Miles ’04 suffered her second loss in a row, dropping her record to 7-4. But it was the Yale offense’s inability to score that was the decisive factor in both games.
“Our pitchers did fine; they kept us right in the game,” Beckert said. “We just couldn’t produce any runs.”
Rawson also made her mark in the second game, giving the Red Foxes a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the third with an RBI single. Game two starter Shayna Filson ’04 tied the game in the top of the fourth with her fourth home run of the season.
But a costly error by the Elis in the bottom of the eighth allowed Marist freshmen Allison Bartley to score the winning run.
“We ended up kicking the ball around, that’s how we lost it,” Van Etten said of the team’s six errors on the afternoon.
Filson allowed just two runs, but freshman Danielle Blake earned the win for Marist. Blake came in for junior Nicole Fox in the fifth inning. While the two pitchers gave up a combined seven hits, Yale was unable to capitalize on its offensive opportunities.
“When we hit the ball solidly, we hit it at people,” Beckert said. “We just couldn’t string anything together.”
In both eighth innings, the teams instituted the tie-breaker rule by automatically placing a runner on second base. Normally, the rule does not go into effect until the 10th inning, but officials were worried about having to call the games due to darkness.
The Bulldogs return home to take on Cornell and Columbia this weekend.