No. 16 Softball Blanks Rutgers-Camden in NJAC Doubleheader

Camden, NJ (4/5/08) - The Montclair State University softball team proved why it is one of the top programs in the country.

The Red Hawks, ranked No. 16 in the latest National Fastpitch Coaches Association Division III poll, used a no-hitter from senior pitcher Carolyn McCrea (Wharton, NJ/Jefferson Township) to post a 9-0 five-inning victory over Rutgers-Camden in the opening game of a New Jersey Athletic Conference doubleheader here Saturday.

Montclair State added a 7-0 victory in the nightcap as the Red Hawks extended their winning streak to 13 games and raised their record to 20-2 overall and 6-0 in the NJAC.

Rutgers-Camden falls to 3-14 overall and 1-3 in NJAC play.

In the opener, McCrea (10-2) struck out six and walked one as she tossed the first no-hitter against the Scarlet Raptors since Rowan’s Jamie Elias accomplished the feat in a NJAC playoff game April 29, 1999. It was the sixth no-hitter against Rutgers-Camden in program history and the third time it was done by a Montclair State pitcher.

McCrea had a perfect game going until she hit Raptor senior shortstop Kathleen Dreitlein (Berkeley Heights, NJ/Governor Livingston) with two outs in the fourth inning. The walk came to freshman catcher Ashley McDonald (Woodbury, NJ/Woodbury) with two outs in the fifth.

Montclair State scored all the runs McCrea needed with a five-run second inning, which featured four walks and two hits. A fielder’s choice by freshman left fielder Leslie Gonzalez (North Bergen, NJ/North Bergen) plated the first run. Senior third baseman Jackie Ferranti (Bergenfield, NJ/Bergenfield) singled home one run in the inning and senior center fielder Maureen Shockley (Magnolia, NJ/Triton) forced home a run with a walk. Junior shortstop Jennifer Jimenez (Linden, NJ/Linden) capped the frame with a two-run single.

The Red Hawks added four runs in the third, highlighted by a two-run triple from Ferranti, on their way to the win. Ferranti went 2-for-3 with two runs and three RBIs, while Jimenez went 2-for-3 with two RBIs.

Montclair State junior Kelly Karp (Edison, NJ/Edison) and sophomore Elia Persico (Marlton, NJ/Cherokee) combined on a two-hit shutout in the nightcap. Karp (8-0) allowed both hits in six innings, walking one and striking out six. Persico retired the side in order in the seventh inning.

Montclair State scored all the runs it needed in a three-run first inning. The Red Hawks finished with seven hits on the day, two by freshman catcher Kacie Neurouter (Wayne, NJ/Wayne Valley).

After losing to the 16th-ranked Red Hawks, the Scarlet Raptors have to travel to Ramapo College for a 1 p.m. makeup doubleheader Sunday. The Roadrunners are ranked No. 9 in the country.

Montclair State hosts Ramapo Tuesday at 3 p.m. in a battle of national powers.