|Line Score (Game 1)|
|Maura Lynch (L, 2-3)||6.0||9||5||5||0||1|
|Line Score (Game 2)|
|Tonia Wu (L, 2-8)||6.0||6||2||2||0||2|
NEW YORK — The Columbia softball team dropped two close decisions at Penn, 5-2 and 2-1, on Saturday in its final outing of the 2017 season.
Columbia finishes the year 20-28 overall with an 8-12 mark in the Ivy League. The Lions won 20 games for the first time since 2014 and came up one Ivy League win shy of the program record (9-11) from that same season.
The 2017 campaign was a record-setting one on the offensive side. Columbia set new team records in home runs (37), RBIs (184), runs (205) and total bases (539). Individually, junior Madison Gott and first-year Sommer Grzybek tied the single-season home run record with 10 apiece. Gott also broke records in batting average (.381), RBIs (40), hits (59) and total bases (102). Meanwhile, Grzybek slugged .690 to set the program's new mark in just her first season. Her 100 total bases also eclipsed the previous record of 93.
Seniors Tonia Wu and Kerry Cook played their final games in a Lions uniform. Wu got the start in the finale, making it count by allowing just two runs in a complete-game performance. Cook ended her career with 152 hits and 28 doubles, both of which rank among the top-10 in program history.
Game 1 Recap: Penn 5 – Columbia 2
Two solo home runs were the only offense Columbia provided and Penn used a four-run third to win the opener of Saturday's season-ending doubleheader, 5-2.
Junior Taylor Troutt and sophomore Bonnie Schipper hit the blasts. Troutt tied the game, 1-1, in the third with her fourth of the season to center. Schipper cracked her third of the year an inning later, crushing a two-out shot to left center.
In-between the pair of Columbia homers, Penn scored four runs in the bottom of the third that proved to be the difference. The first three batters of the inning all singled off starter Maura Lynch to set the table. Lynch did well to record the next two outs with just one run coming across, including a nice stop on a comebacker to force an out at home. However, with two down, Jurie Joyner sent a 3-1 pitch over the wall in center, driving in three runs to make it a 5-1 game.
Lynch (2-3) didn't allow a run the rest of the way, earning her first complete game of the season and fourth of her career. She worked around a one-out double in the fourth and found ways to strand Penn runners on third in both the fifth and sixth innings. The junior struck out one when she retired the side in order in the second.
Penn senior Alexis Sargent (13-9) took the win, striking out six and surrendering the two home runs. Columbia totaled four hits in the game and worked out one walk.
Penn senior Leah Allen fired the opening salvo with a solo shot in the first, upping her school-record career home run total to 33.
Game 2 Recap: Penn 2 – Columbia 1
Columbia senior Tonia Wu and Penn senior Courtney Cuzick made the final starts of their collegiate careers and treated the Penn Park crowd to a pitcher's duel. However, it was the Quakers that broke through on a two-run homer in the bottom of the sixth, hanging on to earn a four-game series sweep, 2-1.
Columbia put up a fight facing a two-run deficit in the seventh. First-year Sommer Grzybek led off the inning with a hard-hit single past short and the next two batters, Bonnie Schipper and Taylor Troutt, nearly tied the game on long foul outs to the warning track.
The Quakers went to the bullpen for game-one starter, Alexis Sargent, for the final out, but Sargent walked Jordan Townsend to put the tying run on base and was called for two illegal pitches during the next at-bat to first-year Amanda Nishihira. The second illegal pitch resulted in a run and placed Townsend 60 feet away.
With the game on the line, Penn reentered Cuzick, who got senior Kerry Cook to ground out to end the ball game. Cuzick (4-3) was credited with a full seven innings, allowing the one run on three hits and a walk while striking out a pair.
Wu (2-8) didn't allow a hit until the third inning and spread just four through the first five. The native of Carlsbad, California, retired six in a row her first time through the order and worked past a couple of two-out singles in the fourth. Penn placed a runner on third for the first time in the fifth, but the senior got out of it with the help of a nice running grab by shortstop Madison Gott. Wu ended the game with two strikeouts, both of which came in the first inning.
Freshman Corey Burrough hit the game-winning home run in the sixth. Sarah Cwiertnia led off the inning with a single over the glove of second baseman Taylor Troutt. She was sacrificed into scoring position with the first out, but it didn't matter, as Burrough sent the second pitch of the next at-bat over the fence in right to break the scoreless tie.