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BaseballHarvard

Baseball takes on Yale (17–17 overall, 11–4 Ivy) at home this weekend, hoping to recover from being swept in a three-game series against Harvard earlier this week.

The Tigers (10–20, 7–8) will play a doubleheader on Saturday and one game on Sunday at Clarke Field. It is imperative for the team to win all three games in the series this weekend — even one loss could put the Tigers out of contention for the Ivy League championship.

When the two teams faced off last year, Princeton lost 0–8 and 1–3 in the two-game series. Yale went on to win the division and Ivy League championship and earned a spot in the NCAA Division I baseball tournament.

The last time the Tigers and Bulldogs played a three-game series was in the 2016 Ivy League championship. Despite having lost both regular season games to Yale, Princeton took two of three in an exciting championship series and advanced to the NCAA tournament. The Tigers lost in the first round of their regional bracket.

Last weekend, the Tigers won their three games against Columbia (14–24 , 9–6) in New York. After losing the first game on Saturday, 2–0, Princeton rallied in afternoon to crush the Lions, 10–5. On Sunday, Princeton clutched the win, 7–6. Columbia had the lead until the top of the seventh inning, when Princeton scored five runs to secure the game. Sunday’s game allowed the Tigers to take the series against Columbia for the first time since 2011.

Two days later, on Tuesday morning, baseball fell to Harvard (19–17, 9–6) in Princeton’s first loss in conference play against the Crimson in three years by a score of 1–5. Later that day, the Tigers lost 6–13 in the biggest loss to Harvard since the 2015 season. On Wednesday afternoon, the Tigers lost again, 3–8, enabling the Crimson to complete a sweep of the series.

The past three games have been the first time Princeton has been swept by an opponent in the Ivy League this season, and the second time the Tigers have conceded a series — the first being against Penn (12–22–1, 6–8–1) two weeks ago. The three other series played with conference opponents, however, have all been wins.

After a local match against Monmouth (16–20) next Thursday, the Tigers will head to Hanover, N.H., for the weekend to finish off their regular season with three games against Dartmouth (10–19–1, 6–5–1). Last year, the Tigers won one and lost one to the Big Green in Hanover.

With the new Ivy League baseball format in effect this year where the two teams with the best records in the conference advance to the championship series, the Tigers’ chance at qualifying relies on important wins against Yale and Dartmouth. But focusing on the present is what is best for the team, according to head coach Scott Bradley.

“You can’t look too far ahead or you’re going to get yourself in trouble,” he said. “You just have to take an attack one weekend at a time.”

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