PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Brown University softball closes out its 2017 season with a four-game series against Yale, playing a road doubleheader on Saturday and a home twin bill on Sunday at the Brown Softball Field with both game days beginning at 12:30 p.m.
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THE FIRST SEASON
The 2017 season marks the first season for Brown softball at its new field. Softball has a rich and storied tradition at Brown University, and to commemorate this historic season, there will be a ceremonial first pitch prior to every game at the Brown Softball Field. This new facility was made possible through the generous support of donors, alumni, and fans.
As part of the continued celebration of the new Brown softball field, the Bears will welcome former Brown softball head coach Pam McCreesh – who led the Bears to the 2004 Ivy League title – to throw out the ceremonial first pitch for Sunday's opening game and will welcome four-time All-Ivy shortstop, Janet Leung, Brown Class of 2016, to throw out the ceremonial first pitch for Sunday's second game.
Prior to Sunday's opening game, Brown will honor the six members of its senior class – Christina Andrews (Southlake, Texas), Gina Chieffallo (Eynon, Pa.), Lauren Hanna (Milford, Mass.), Leah Nakashima (San Jose, Calif.), Julia Schoenewald (Jamison, Pa.), and Sarah Syrop (Kennesaw, Ga.). – for their hard work and dedication to the program over the last four years.
LAST TIME OUT
Senior Gina Chieffallo threw her first career shutout, and senior Julia Schoenewald hit a two-run home run as Brown beat Harvard University, 4-0, on Thursday afternoon at the Brown Softball Field. The Bears scored twice in the fourth and twice in the fifth while blanking the Crimson in an Ivy League North Division game rescheduled from Saturday, Apr. 22.
SCOUTING THE BULLDOGS
Yale enters the weekend with a 15-26 overall record and an 8-8 Ivy League mark, sitting two games back of first place Dartmouth in the Ivy League North Division standings. Francesca Casalno leads the Bulldogs with a .379 batting average while Madison Sack paces the team with seven home runs and 24 RBIs. In the circle, Casalino has registered a team-best 4.15 ERA while Lindsay Efflandt and Terra Jerpbak have tallied ERAs of 4.30 and 4.43 respectively.
HOME RUN RECORD
Brown has set a program record for team home runs in a single season with 30 homers thus far in 2017. The 2011 and 2012 teams established the previous record with 28 home runs in each of those seasons. This year, the Bears have hit 18 home runs in 16 Ivy League games.
Junior Annie McGregor (Carlsbad, Calif.) leads this year's team with seven homers while freshman Kaitlin Okimoto (Burbank, Calif.) and senior Christina Andrews (Southlake, Texas) have tallied six and five blasts respectively. Sophomore Cat Seitz (Poway, Calif.) and freshman Raquel Blanchard (Valencia, Calif.) have contributed four homers apiece.
OKIMOTO LEADING OFF
Freshman Kaitlin Okimoto (Burbank, Calif.) has tallied a .328 batting average, .426 on-base percentage, 30 runs, 41 hits, four doubles, six homers, 25 RBIs, and 20 walks while serving as the Bears' lead-off hitter in her rookie campaign. She ranks first in the Ivy League in runs, second in walks, second in assists (88), seventh in homers, eighth in RBIs, and ninth in hits. In Ivy competition, she has notched a .327 average with 18 hits, 11 runs, three homers, and eight RBIs.
MCGREGOR PRESENTS POWER
Junior Annie McGregor (Carlsbad, Calif.) has provided the Bears with power in the middle of the lineup, registering a .339 average, .622 slugging percentage, 26 runs, 43 hits, nine doubles, three triples, seven homers, and 26 RBIs. She ranks fifth in the league in homers, fifth in slugging, sixth in hits, sixth in RBIs, eighth in runs, and first in put outs (331). In Ivy games, she has compiled a .340 average, .660 slugging percentage, 18 hits, nine runs, four homers, and 14 RBIs.
ANDREWS BRINGS SENIOR PRESENCE AT PLATE
Senior Christina Andrews (Southlake, Texas) has hit .319 with 36 hits, 19 runs, eight doubles, five home runs, and 17 RBIs this season. In conference play, she has posted a .351 batting average, .676 slugging percentage, 13 hits, nine runs, three doubles, three homers, and seven RBIs.
METZGER & SEITZ GIVE DEPTH
Junior Grayson Metzger (Severna Park, Md.) and sophomore Cat Seitz (Poway, Calif.) have helped give the Bears depth in the lineup this season. Metzger has posted a .303 average with 16 runs, 30 hits, nine doubles, a homer, and 16 RBIs. She ranks ninth in the league in doubles. Seitz has logged a .298 average with 17 runs, 31 hits, five doubles, four homers, and 20 RBIs while leading the Ancient Eight with 89 assists.
Orona has notched a 3.57 ERA over 21 appearances, 17 starts, and 94.0 innings with five wins, eight complete games and 50 strikeouts. She ranks fifth in the league in ERA, sixth in complete games, fourth in starts, eighth in appearances, and eighth in innings.
Wimmer has recorded a 4.21 ERA over 21 appearances, 13 starts, and 99.2 innings with six wins, seven complete games, and 41 strikeouts. She stands fourth in the league in innings, seventh in wins, eighth in appearances, and seventh in complete games. Wimmer has also provided the Bears a boost at the plate, hitting .467 (7-for-15) in Ivy League games.
OKIMOTO WINS IVY ROOKIE OF THE WEEK
Freshman Kaitlin Okimoto (Burbank, Calif.) earned Ivy League Rookie of the Week honors on Mar. 13. She posted a .462 batting average (6-for-13), a run, a double, an RBI, a walk, and a .500 on-base percentage over five games. She went 2-for-3 with a run, an RBI, and a double against Fordham.
FINISHING PRE-IVY PLAY STRONG
The Bears closed their pre-Ivy League slate with wins in seven of their last eight games in the month of March. Brown won its last two games at the Pirate Invitational and went 3-1 at the Stony Brook Tournament. In their first games at their new field, the Bears swept a doubleheader from Hartford.