Softball Pounds Out Doubleheader Sweep of Rutgers-Newark

Game #1 Box / Game #2 Box

Newark, NJ (4/13/10) – Senior leftfielder Kelly Nance (Marlboro, NJ / Marlboro) and sophomore shortstop Shannon Mozek (Wayne, NJ / Wayne Valley) each collected five hits and drove in four runs as Montclair State swept a New Jersey Athletic Conference softball doubleheader from Rutgers-Newark at Alumni Field on Tuesday afternoon.

Freshman first baseman Kelli O’Brien (Edison, NJ / Edison) and junior Leslie Gonzalez (North Bergen, NJ / North Bergen) had three RBI apiece as the Red Hawks (14-10, 4-4 NJAC) scored six times in the top of the seventh for a 13-6 win in the opener.

Freshman righthander Jamie Miller (Spotswood, NJ / St. John Vianney) allowed an unearned run and four hits in the second game as MSU completed the sweep with a 9-1 victory. Miller also picked up a save in the first game.

Junior Jessica Zelaya (Kearny, NJ / Kearny) went a combined 3-for-7 with a pair of runs batted in for the Scarlet Raiders, who fell to 9-17 overall, 0-8 in the NJAC.

The first game was a back-and-forth contest as Montclair State jumped out to a 4-0 lead before Rutgers-Newark battled back with a five-run second to take the lead. Montclair moved back in front in the fourth with two runs in the fourth only to see the Scarlet Raiders knot the game at 6-6 in the bottom of the fifth as junior second baseman Emily Ibarra (Kearny, NJ / Kearny) blasted a solo shot to lead off the inning.

MSU responded with a run in the top of the sixth as two errors led to the eventual go-ahead run. Tori Ferrante (Edison, NJ / JP Stevens) reached on the first miscue and scored on the second.  The Red Hawks broke the game open in the seventh highlighted by Mozek’s two-run double and O’Brien’s single that also plated two.

Senior righthander Elia Persico (Marlton, NJ / Cherokee) got the victory as she went the first five innings improving to 7-6. Miller came on to pitch a scoreless sixth and seventh innings to earn her first save of the season. Freshman Angela Riscinti (Linden, NJ / Linden) took the loss falling to 6-9.

Nance finished 3-for-3 with O’Brien also collecting three hits as Montclair rapped out 14 in the contests. Zelaya and Tina Aita (Waldwick, NJ / Waldwick) had two hits each for Rutgers-Newark.

The Red Hawks bats would remain hot in the second game as MSU pounded out 17 hits.

Montclair scored twice in the bottom of the first in the bottom of the first as Nance plated the first run with a single and she later scored as O’Brien doubled to center as the Red Hawks led 2-0. Rutgers-Newark answered in the second as Monica Bagan (Wallington, NJ / Wallington) scored on an error to trim the deficit to a run.

However, MSU erupted for six runs in the bottom half of the inning as it sent 11 batters to the plate. Mozek had an RBI single and Megan Durkin (West Orange, NJ / West Orange) brought home two more with a single through the middle of the infield. A base hit by Gonzalez brought home two more and Amanda Livsey’s (Congers, NY / Clarkstown North) doubled capped the scoring as Montclair led 8-1.

The offense proved to be more than enough for Miller who upped her record to 7-3 on the year. The righty struck out two and scattered four singles. Samantha Veneziano (North Arlington, NJ / North Arlington) suffered the loss falling to 3-8.

Ferrante and Mozek were both 3-for-4 for Montclair State.

Rutgers-Newark heads right back into action on Wednesday, April 14 as the Scarlet Raiders host Old Westbury at Alumni Field beginning at 5:00 pm. Montclair State off until Saturday, April 17 when the Red Hawks host Richard Stockton in an NJAC twinbill at the MSU Softball Stadium at 1:00 pm.