Raritan earns spot in sectional final

Raritan earns spot in sectional final

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Raritan earns spot in sectional final

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Raritan head coach Aado Kommendant recently has talked about his squad “getting over the hump.” The “hump” is Robbinsville, and the Rockets are going to get another crack at the Ravens.

On Wednesday, the seventh-seeded Rockets (21-8) scored a 7-1 Central II semifinals victory over sixth-seeded Carteret to earn a spot in Friday’s sectional final against the top-seeded Ravens. It was that same score by which Raritan lost to Robbinsville a year ago.

“We’ve gone out of our way to play a tough schedule, and we are as well-prepared as possible,” Kommendant said. “The lumps we took in April have paved the way to where we are now.”

In the second inning against Carteret (16-10), the Rockets scored five times to break open the contest. With one out, Lindsey Carver doubled to left-center and went to second when Bethany Budner walked, before Nicole Coppolino stroked a double to right-center to score Carver with the first run. Emily Schaffer then swatted a single to center to score Budner and Alexa Sammarco, running for Coppolino, and Daniella Marino slugged a two-run home run to center.

Brianna Rinaldi and Schaffer ended up 2-for-4, Schaffer with three RBI. In the circle, Schaffer allowed four hits and a walk while striking out four.

IN OTHER NJSIAA SOFTBALL GAMES:

SJ VIANNEY 7, RB CATHOLIC 0: Kate Beriont fanned seven and walked two while tossing a two-hitter, allowing a double to Laura Wickham and a single to Gabby Bram, and Amanda Durham led off the bottom of the first with a homer to left to provide all the scoring the Lancers (24-1) needed in a Non-Public South A quarterfinal.

Following Durham’s homer, Jackie Gallagher singled before Kate Baron whacked a double to right-center for a 2-0 lead, then Erica Krumbine walked and Beriont drove in Baron and Krumbine with a double down the first-base line. Baron, who went 2-for-3, added a solo homer to center in the third. Durham finished 3-for-4.

MATER DEI 11, ST. ROSE 1: Larisa Chiesa went 5-for-5, including triples in the fourth and fifth innings, with three RBI, and winning pitcher Jackie Nash fanned four and walked none while firing a three-hitter, as the Seraphs (23-2) soared past the Purple Roses in the Non-Public South B quarterfinals.

Kaitlyn Kretzmer staked St. Rose (11-13) to a 1-0 lead in the top of the first when she belted a solo homer to left, but Mater Dei erased the deficit and grabbed the lead with two in the bottom half of the inning. The Seraphs then scored once in the second, four times in the fourth, once in the fifth and three in the sixth to end the contest. Emilie Boman went 3-for-3 with two RBI and Nash went 2-for-3 with an RBI.

WASHINGTON TWP. 11, TR NORTH 1: Sam Reilly whacked a double as one of the Mariners’ three hits against the Minutemaids, but North (18-8) managed only a run in the top of the fifth as top-seeded Washington Township (26-3) used a 12-hit attack, took advantage of four errors and scorched the Mariners in five innings.

IN SHORE CONFERENCE TOURNAMENT ACTION:

TR EAST 1, FREEHOLD TWP. 0 (10 inn.): With Sarah Bencivenga on second to start the bottom of the 10th, winning pitcher Jordan Weed dropped a sacrifice bunt to put Bencivenga on third, and Val Hirschfeld scored Bencivenga on a fielder’s choice to first base, as the Raiders (23-4) got past the Patriots (18-8) in the SCT quarterfinals and gave head coach Debbie Schwartz career victory No. 499.

Weed allowed three hits, fanned 15 and walked none, while Cassie Varvaro, Bencivenga and Hirschfeld each had two hits. Third-seeded East will play either seventh-seeded Howell or 15th-seeded Mater Dei in the semifinals.

MIDD. SOUTH 1, CENTRAL 0 (9 inn.): Golden Eagles pitcher Stephanie Pepper carried a no-hitter into the ninth, but the fourth-seeded Eagles (16-9) managed a pair of hits in their last at-bat to win the Round-of-16 contest and advance to the quarterfinals to meet 12th-seeded Red Bank Catholic. After Hannah Milano led off with a single, pinch-runner Hannah Wisialko went to second on a wild pitch and then scored on a double down the left-field line by Alex Corrigan.

Pepper fanned 13 and walked one, while South pitcher Alli Podmajersky whiffed seven and walked two while allowing three hits, including two to Kylie Smolock and another to Brittany Buehrer.

HOWELL 3, MIDD. NORTH 0: Alyssa Ruiz scattered five hits, and the Rebels (16-7) scored a run in each of the first, fourth and fifth innings while banging out 10 hits, en route to an Round-of-16 victory over the Lions (12-10). Seventh-seeded Howell will play a quarterfinals matchup against 15th-seeded Mater Dei on Thursday.

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