Nance's Power-Packed Day Leads Softball to Sweep of NJCU

Game #1 Box / Game #2 Box

Little Falls, NJ (4/27/10) – Senior rightfielder Kelly Nance (Marlboro, NJ / Marlboro) blasted four home runs and drove in nine runs as Montclair State remained in the hunt for a spot in the New Jersey Athletic Conference Softball Championship with a doubleheader sweep of New Jersey City University at the MSU Softball Stadium on Tuesday afternoon.

Nance went 5-for-8 at the plate while Leslie Gonzalez (North Bergen, NJ / North Bergen) was 6-for-7 as the Red Hawks (20-14) evened their record at 8-8 in the NJAC and temporarily moved into the sixth and final spot. MSU is a game ahead of Kean University (7-7) at the moment as the Cougars’ doubleheader with Ramapo in Union, NJ was postponed.

Montclair closes out its NJAC slate on Saturday as they travel to Camden, NJ to face Rutgers-Camden in a 1:00 pm matchup with the Scarlet Raptors. MSU would most likely have to sweep the twinbill to have a chance for a berth in the NJAC Tournament.

Freshman third baseman Rebecca Satz (Morris Plains, NJ / Morristown) drove in three runs for the Gothic Knights, who fell to 14-22 on the season, 1-15 in the NJAC.

NJCU took a 1-0 lead in the opener scoring in the top of the first inning. Megan Ginter (Nutley, NJ /Nutley) singled, moved to second on a ground out and stole third before scoring on Satz’ RBI single to left field. Montclair answered in its half with three runs.  Megan Durkin (West Orange, NJ / West Orange) doubled in the first run and she scored as Nance blasted the first of her round-trippers on the day giving MSU a 3-1 lead. The home run was the first of the year for the Red Hawks as a team.

Leslie Gonzalez (North Bergen, NJ / North Bergen)
singled in a run the following inning to extend the lead and Montclair tacked on four more in the fifth to take an 8-1 advantage. Kelli O’Brien (Edison, NJ / Edison) and Heather Bergman (Berkeley Heights, NJ / Gov. Livingston) drove in the first two runs with base hits and Gonzalez and Shannon Mozek (Wayne, NJ / Wayne Valley) had the last two as Montclair took its seven-run lead.

Nance ended the game in the bottom of the sixth as she led off with her second home run of the game over the left-centerfield fence.

Freshman righthander Jamie Miller (Spotswood, NJ / St. John Vianney) picked up the win as she improved to 9-6. Miller allowed nine hits, struck six and walked one. Tara Perrucci (East Rutherford, NJ / Wallington) took the loss to fall to 6-10.

Goznalez was 4-for-4 for Montclair while Nance went 3-for-4. Bergman and Mozek had two hits apiece for the Red Hawks. Ginter and Taylor Lang (Carteret, NJ / Carteret) had two hits each for New Jersey City.

The second game was nearly a carbon copy of the first as NJCU scored first again, this time with two runs in the bottom of the first as Satz doubled home both runs. Montclair countered with a three-run second to take the lead for good. Stephanie Szeliga (So. Plainfield, NJ / So. Plainfield) and Gonzalez each had an RBI in the inning.

The Red Hawks pushed the lead to 7-2 in the fourth. Durkin drove in two with a double and Nance connected on her third home run of the doubleheader, a two-run shot.  A six-run uprising in the fifth inning helped put the game away for Montclair State. After RBI singles by Priscilla Camacho (Jersey City, NJ / County Prep) and Durkin, Nance came to the plate with the bases loaded. She would deliver again with a grand slam as Montclair led 13-2.

Senior righthander Elia Persico (Marlton, NJ / Cherokee) took full advantage of the run support as she upped her record to 11-7 with the win. Persico allowed four hits, struck out and walked two. Ashley O’Beirne (Wood-Ridge, NJ / Immaculate Conception) took the loss (8-12).

Nance (6 RBI), Durkin and Gonzalez had two hits each for the Red Hawks. Ginter was 2-for-2 for NJCU.