The softball team (3-11, 1-2 Ivy) opened Ivy League play this weekend with three road games against Columbia (5-11, 2-1). Bruno won its first game of the weekend Saturday with a score of 8-0, defeating the Lions on the run-ahead rule. But the Bears dropped the weekend’s other two games, losing 2-1 Saturday evening and 5-3 Sunday.
“Overall, we had a much stronger start this year than last year. We came out strong with a run-ahead rule win and although we lost the next two, both were close games,” wrote Laurel Moody ’25 in a message to The Herald via Brown Athletics. “I am optimistic for the rest of the season.”
“I genuinely believe this season will be remarkable. I have seen so much greatness on this team, and our roster is endlessly talented,” wrote Jasmine Hsiao ’26 in a message to The Herald via Brown Athletics.
During Saturday’s opening game, the Bears were led by an overpowering offense that forced the game to end in five innings. The team totaled eight hits and four walks throughout the game. Pitcher Alexis Guevara ’25 shined, allowing only three hits and zero runs across all five innings and earning her second win of the season on the mound.
After a scoreless first inning, the Bears came up with their first run of the game in the second on an RBI single by Cameron Zytkewicz Ray ’26, bringing in Leah Carey ’25.
Guevara showed resilience in the second inning after loading the bases on two walks. In the high-pressure situation, Guevara immediately retired the next batter on a foul out, saving the inning and keeping the Bears up 1-0.
The third inning was electric for the Bears. A bunt by Dara English ’24 and an error by the Columbia defense helped Vanessa Alexander ’25 reach home plate. Subsequent singles by Brianna Rodriguez ’24 and Meghan Gormley ’23 scored English and Hsiao and brought the game to 4-0 for the Bears. Rodriguez then scored on a sac fly to center field, ending the inning 5-0 in favor of Bruno.
In the fourth and fifth innings, the Bears went on to score three more runs. After the bottom of the fifth inning went scoreless for the Lions, Brown won on the run-ahead rule.
“The energy on and off the field was electric throughout the whole game and I am a firm believer that when there is energy, the momentum shifts in your favor,” Hsiao added. “It was great to win our first game of Ivy League play and we were determined to carry that momentum into our next game.”
Hsiao stood out during Saturday’s first game, recording a hit and a walk — both of which led to runs — on two at-bats. She led the team with four runs scored across the weekend series.
“A large part of the game is mindset,” Hsiao wrote. “The key to hitting and performing well in general is having unwavering confidence and persistent energy.”
But Bruno was unable to continue its momentum into the next two games against the Lions. The Bears’ bats went mostly stagnant Saturday evening, notching only four hits and two walks over the course of the complete seven-inning game.
A pair of home runs off Jodie Aguirre ’24 proved too much for Bruno to overcome. Aguirre was ultimately replaced by Anniece Finch ’26, who only allowed two hits over three and two-third innings.
In the fifth inning, Hsiao hit a home run, bringing the game within one run. But neither team was able to add anything more on offense, leading to a 2-1 win for the Lions.
The third game got off to a strong start for the Bears: In the first inning, a single down the line by Gormley scored English, ending the inning with Brown up 1-0. But Columbia scored in the bottom of the first inning, tying the game at one apiece.
A two-run single by Moody in the second scored Hsiao — her fourth run scored of the weekend — and Alexander, helping the Bears take a 3-1 lead.
But Bruno was unable to keep the lead, giving up a pair of runs to tie the game at 3-3 by the fourth inning. A walkoff two-run homer off of Finch in the bottom of the seventh then led the Lions to a 5-3 victory.
The Bears will look to get back in the win column next week during a weekend series against Princeton. The series will be played at the Brown Softball Field and can be streamed live on ESPN+.
“Princeton has a good record, but we are ready for the challenge,” Hsiao wrote. “We have already demonstrated that we can win big with solid pitching and hitting.”
Dennis Carey is a sports senior staff writer for The Brown Daily Herald. He previously contributed to the Arts and Culture section. In his spare time, he enjoys watching Atlanta sports and collecting vinyl records.