Following up its split at Harvard Friday, the Princeton softball team did the same Saturday at Dartmouth, dropping the first game 4-1 before winning the nightcap 9-7.
Princeton (20-11, 5-3 Ivy) will head into next weekend's four-game Ivy South opening weekend at Penn two games behind the Quakers, who are 7-1 in the league. Columbia and Cornell are each 4-4, just one game back of Princeton, and Dartmouth and Harvard co-lead the Ivy North at 4-4 with Yale at 3-5 and Brown at 1-7.
In the first game, Princeton fell behind Dartmouth 1-0 on a home run by the Big Green's Kathy Dzienkowski in the second inning but tied it when Nikki Chu drove home Maddie Cousens in the fifth. The tie stood until the Dartmouth half of the sixth, when the Big Green put together three hits and took advantage of two Princeton errors to score three runs and hold on to win the game 4-1.
Alex Peyton (6-4) struck out nine in the complete-game effort but took the loss, giving up seven hits and a walk but earning only one of Dartmouth's (14-16, 4-4) four runs. Cousens led Princeton with two of the team's seven hits in the opener.
In game two, Princeton trailed only early after three first-inning hits gave the Big Green a 2-0 lead. Princeton scored four times on four walks and three hits in the top of the second, with Rachel Rendina, Alyssa Schmidt and Alex Peyton each getting RBI hits as Princeton pulled ahead 4-2.
The Tigers led by as much as 9-3, thanks to five runs scored between the fifth and sixth innings on a two-run Chu home run in the fifth and on three hits and two walks in the sixth. Dartmouth chipped away, but after a two-run home run by Katie McEachern in the bottom of the seventh, 9-7 was as close as the Big Green got.
Rendina led Princeton at the plate in the second game by going 3 for 5, while Shanna Christian (6-3) struck out hits and overcame giving up 11 hits and a walk to get the win.
Before the Tigers head to Penn for next weekend's four-game series, Princeton will head to Rutgers for a single game at 3:30 p.m. Thursday.