The Big Green Weekend Primer

by Blaze Joel and Brett Drucker | 4/9/15 6:01pm

Surprise! Despite what the weather may indicate, it’s actually April, meaning we’re in the heart of the spring season. Luckily for them, the majority of Dartmouth’s teams will escape the snow by hitting the road this weekend with only women’s tennis and men’s lacrosse sticking around in Hanover. Nevertheless, this should still be a critical weekend as teams try to establish themselves midway through the Ivy League slate.

Men’s Lacrosse vs. Princeton University (Saturday at 1 p.m.)

After a dramatic double overtime win against Harvard University in its first Ivy matchup of the season, the men’s lacrosse team has fallen on hard times after losing its past two league contests. The Big Green will look to right the ship this weekend when they welcome Princeton to Hanover on Saturday. The men will attempt to recreate the scene from the Tigers’ last visit to snowy New Hampshire two seasons ago when the Big Green knocked off then-No. 9 Princeton 10-9 in an upset for the ages.

The visitors enter this matchup with a 2-1 league record, having defeated the University of Pennsylvania and Yale University in addition to notching an impressive overtime victory at Johns Hopkins University in February. Princeton’s offense is led by Mike MacDonald and Kip Orban who are second and fourth in the league in goals on the season, respectively. The Big Green will need to shut down this dynamic duo if they are going to survive, but they have experience in close games this season which should keep it interesting.PREDICTION: Princeton 12 - Dartmouth 10

Women’s Tennis vs. Princeton University (Saturday at 12 p.m.)

The Ivy League’s top ranked team at No. 37, the Big Green has its work cut out for it this weekend as it will host league-leading Princeton, likely indoors at the Boss Tennis Center. Last weekend, the women’s team struggled against perennial powerhouse Columbia University before defeating Cornell University in a close 4-3 match. Princeton has raced out to a 3-0 conference start, but the Big Green will provide them with the toughest test on their schedule so far.

Jacqueline Crawford ’17 will have a critical match at No. 4 singles against Princeton’s freshman Katrine Steffensen who was honored as the ECAC player of the week last weekend after going 2-0 and 1-0 in doubles. Although it is bound to be an exciting match, last weekend Columbia exposed that the Big Green might come up a bit short against some of the toughest Ivy competition.PREDICTION: Princeton 4 - Dartmouth 3

Softball at Yale University(Saturday at 12:30 and 2:30 p.m.; Sunday at 12:30 and 2:30 p.m.)

The defending Ivy League champions enter North Division play this weekend in the driver’s seat with a 7-1 Ivy record, two games ahead of second-place Harvard University. This weekend, the Big Green heads down to New Haven, Connecticut to face a Bulldogs squad that has been struggling but has also caused trouble for the Big Green in the past. Last year in a four-game sweep in Hanover, Dartmouth and Yale went 9 innings before the home team came out ahead 3-2 in the first game before winning the remaining three.

This weekend, the Big Green will again turn to its ace Kristen Rumley ’15, who leads the Ivy League in the circle with 9 wins and sits second the strikeout leaderboard with 89. She saw a 26-inning scoreless streak end last weekend. Her 18 strikeouts over 16.3 innings on the mound last weekend in addition to eight hits and seven RBIs earned the senior Ivy Softball Player and Co-Pitcher of the Week honors.

The women have also been supported this season by an offensive explosion led by Katie McEachern ’16, who leads the Ivy League with an astonishing .479 batting average and eight home runs — three ahead of teammates Karen Chaw ’17 and Maddie Damore ’17 who are tied for second with five homeruns each. Dartmouth’s 28 round-trippers as a team put it far and away in first place in the league with second-place Harvard tallying only 16 so far. If all goes according to plan, the Big Green looks prime to extend its lead in the division and set itself up for a run at repeating as Ivy League Champs.PREDICTION: Dartmouth Sweeps 4-0