LANCASTER, Pa. – The Haverford College softball team suffered a pair of tough setbacks on the road Sunday at Franklin & Marshall. Originally, scheduled to play the Diplomats on Saturday, the Fords were overtaken in the sixth inning of game one in an eventual 8-7 defeat. Franklin & Marshall kept that momentum from the rally rolling into game two during a 9-1 victory.
The Fords took the lead early in the opening game as Ashley Sisto doubled to lead off the first and came around to score on Julia Blake's two-run home run in the following at-bat. Nevertheless, F&M answered right back in the bottom of the first with four runs, capped by Megan Ryan's two-run home run. Haverford cut the deficit to 4-3 in its next turn at-bat as an RBI groundout from Rachel Wolfson scored Sisto who earlier reached via an error. Once again, it was the Diplomats who came right back to extend their lead with a run in both the third and fourth innings.
Haverford loaded the bases in the fifth inning with just one out as the Diplomats made the call to the bullpen. Briana Quinn pushed across one run with an RBI groundout, but eventual winning pitcher Izzy Schaefer got out of the jam with a strikeout. Just one inning later, the Fords would have the bases loaded again with three straight singles from Sisto, Blake, and Wolfson. This time, a double from Kendall Chambers drove in two of those runs while an RBI hit back through the middle from Temma Levis gave the Fords a 7-6 advantage.
Franklin & Marshall started its final comeback with two singles to start the bottom of the sixth. A sacrifice fly and two-out single scored both of those runners and allowed the Diplomats to claim an 8-7 advantage. That score held up as Blake tripled with two down in the seventh but was left stranded as the potential game-tying run. She finished the game 4-for-5 at the plate with two runs scored and two more runs driven in. She singled twice to come up just a double shy of the cycle with her two other extra-base hits.
In game two, the Diplomats scored in four of their five innings at-bat during the run-rule victory. A two-run blast in the first by Taylor Long and three-run home run in the third off the bat of Lexi Piccinich provided over half of Franklin & Marshall's offense during the second game. Haverford scored its only run of game two as Blake continued her hot hitting at the plate with an RBI single in the third that scored Sisto to give her four runs scored between the two games. Blake finished her day a combined 6-for-8 at the plate and was not kept off of the base paths until her final plate appearance of the afternoon.
The Diplomats carried a 7-1 lead into the bottom of the fifth and did not relent with a double and single to start that inning. A two-run single with one down allowed the Diplomats to walk-off with their second win of the afternoon. Schaefer also got the win in the circle for the Diplomats during game two as she did not allow an earned run in her five innings of work despite allowing six hits to the Fords.
Softball will have three doubleheaders in Centennial Conference play during the upcoming week. Up first will be a trip to Swarthmore on Tuesday for a 3 p.m. doubleheader. A Fords sweep would guarantee at least a share of the Hood Trophy as Haverford leads the friendly competition by an 8-2 score with eight sports to be contested this spring. Haverford will also be at home Thursday against Muhlenberg and Saturday against Gettysburg.