Softball Eliminates Rowan in NJAC Tournament; Will Face WPU Next

Box Score

Glassboro, NJ (5/6/11) –Montclair State turned to NJAC Pitcher of the Year Alex Hill (Parsippany, NJ / Parsippany Hills) to keep their NJAC Tournament hopes alive and the freshman righthander delivered with a two-hit, nine-strikeout performance as the second-seeded Red Hawks eliminated top-seeded Rowan University with a 6-1 victory at the Rowan Softball Field on Friday afternoon.

Senior centerfielder Leslie Gonzalez (North Bergen, NJ / North Bergen) drove in three runs as MSU (27-9) advances and will meet third-seeded William Paterson at Noon on Saturday, May 7 in another elimination contest. The winner will advance to a 2:00 pm contest against the loser of No. 6 Kean and No. 5 TCNJ.

It will be the third meeting between Montclair and WPU in less than a week. The two split a doubleheader in Little Falls last Saturday with the Red Hawks taking the first game 2-1 before Pioneers earned a split with an 8-5 triumph in the second contest.

Hill picked up her 17th victory of the season (17-4) as she held the Profs hitless through the first six innings and faced just one batter over the minimum during that time. Her only blemish came in the top of the seventh as she allowed a leadoff single followed by a double that produced Rowan’s only run. Hill then retired the next three batters to preserve the win for Montclair.

By the time Hill allowed a hit, her teammates had already racked up a 6-0 lead, including five runs in the second inning.
Freshman second baseman Katie Muglia (South Plainfield, NJ / South Plainfield) led off with a single and after an out, Alisha Cumberton (Toms River, NJ / Toms River East) had a base. Stephanie Szeliga (South Plainfield, NJ / South Plainfield) reached on an error to load the bases and Gonzalez cleared them with a triple to left field as Montclair led 3-0.

Still the Red Hawks were not finished as Shannon Mozek (Wayne, NJ / Wayne Valley) doubled to drive home Gonzalez for a four-run advantage. Kelli O’Brien (Edison, NJ / Edison) added a two-out, RBI single scoring Mozek as the Red Hawks led 5-0.

Meanwhile Hill was dominating the Profs. After a one-out error in the first, she retired the next 14 batters she faced until the leadoff single in the seventh.

MSU would add one more run in the fifth inning. O’Brien led off with a double and was sacrifice over to third. The Profs would get the second out, but Cumberton came through with an RBI single.

Gonzalez finished 2-for-4 while O’Brien and Cumberton also had two hits apiece.