Essex softball tidbits, after 1 day, no less

Welcome to the world of Essex County high school softball, where no day is uneventful.

If ‘All My Children’ ever decided to make a comeback, it could be filmed throughout Essex County during the three months of March-June.

Obviously, I’m kidding. I’ve always said the softball season is eight weeks of fun, when it comes to dealing with the coaches and kids who make up the landscape.

Anyway, Day 1 of the regular season began on April 1, with some interesting games.

In the Super Essex Conference’s (SEC) American Division, Livingston, Mount St. Dominic, Cedar Grove and Nutley all won their games against SEC American opponents.

Livingston’s 9-1 win, at The Stable, against West Essex, was impressive, especially considering the team had not practiced, once, on its home field during the entire pre-season. In fact, there were rumors the game was going to be played at West Essex, because the field, which is owned by the Town, might not be ready in time for the opener. Livingston had actually played the final week of March at Diamond Nation, in Flemington, at the indoor softball facility.

best_70eb59715b999e4ef674_1044631_10201216813889944_325606993_nLivingston coach Jason Daily will rely on senior Kylie McLaughlin (AKA Seattle Slew), who played second base in the season opener but will most likely see action in centerfield, too.

As West Essex coach Andrea Mondadori said after the season opener, Livingston can flat out hit. The Lancers are now 36-1 in conference and county play since the start of the 2012 season. The lone loss came at home to Cedar Grove last April. Livingston will visit Cedar Grove this Thursday, at Panther Park.

And, trust me on this one, West Essex will be heard from in a big way this year. They’re good. And late in the game at Livingston, Mondadori unveiled a new pitching threat in freshman Samantha Huetter, who threw GAS in the one inning she worked, striking out three batters. West Essex’s senior pitcher, Jenny Shaw, is also a talented righty, and there are two other pitchers on that roster who will help the Knights, as well.

Speaking of pitching surpluses, Mount St. Dominic beat Montclair, 10-0, as freshman Kelsey Oh won her varsity debut in the circle. Oh, along with seniors Sam Platt and Olivia Gemma give The Mount three (should I say the word?) stud pitchers. Most baseball/softball coaches will say you can never have enough pitching, so the Mount’s surplus in the circle should make it very interesting.

Nutley defeated Caldwell, 6-2. The Raiders’ Carly Anderson (Stud name: Spectacular Bid) was impressive in the circle and also had two hits. Nutley will swing the bats this year, no question. Breanna DeMaio and Morgan Gualtieri excelled at the plate for Nutley, which faces West Orange on Thursday.  And let’s not forget Caldwell, which returned pitcher Cayla Lombardi to the lineup. Lombardi will be a key to the Chiefs’ success this season. It’s great to see her back and playing again.

1124515785The ‘other’ Spectacular Bid

Cedar Grove defeated West Orange, 5-2. Rianna Marinelli, a freshman, pitched a solid game for the Panthers. Over the last four seasons, Gabby Castelli did just about all the pitching for Cedar Grove, but she’s now a freshman at William Paterson. And speaking of West Orange, how about Jaime DeAngelis, who struck out 12?

In my first ‘Harry’s Corner’ yesterday, it was noted that there will be few surprises this year in the SEC American, meaning most of the teams are pretty well matched. It will be hard to call a particular victory a huge upset within the division. Most of these kids are playing year round, and it’s obvious the pitching is getting better and better.

In the SEC Liberty, Glen Ridge, Bloomfield and Newark Academy all won its April 1 openers. Newark Academy is the slight favorite to win the division, but Bloomfield is always tough, and their 6-3 win over MKA in the opener is evidence of that. And Glen Ridge’s has a really good pitcher in senior righty Tara Kelly, who struck out 10 in a win over Belleville.

So, for one day, there was plenty to talk about. A busy week continues with conference games on Thursday. This Saturday, Livingston and Mount St. Dominic are among the Essex County teams that will travel to “Larezza Country”, better known as the IHA Tournament in Bergen County. That’s always been an excellent tournament and this year should be no exception.

Here are the list of games at IHA this weekend.

2014 Softball Tournament Schedule
IHA Invitational
Saturday, April 5

IHA vs. Pennsbury (PA), 9 a.m.
Ursuline (NY) vs. Pennsbury (PA), 11 a.m.
Mount St. Dominic vs. DePaul, 1 p.m.
Livingston vs. St. John Vianney, 3 p.m.
Sunday, April 6
IHA vs. St. Joe’s, 9 a.m.
Saddle Brook vs. Raritan, 11 a.m.
Caravel Academy (Del.) vs. Ursuline (NY), 1 p.m.
Indian Hills vs. High Point, 3 p.m. – See more at: http://blog.northjersey.com/varsityaces/31809/scoops-the-almost-first-blog-of-2014-softball-season/#sthash.TfOz93N2.dpuf

 

2014 Softball Tournament Schedule
IHA Invitational
Saturday, April 5
IHA vs. Pennsbury (PA), 9 a.m.
Ursuline (NY) vs. Pennsbury (PA), 11 a.m.
Mount St. Dominic vs. DePaul, 1 p.m.
Livingston vs. Pascack Hills, 3 p.m.

Sunday, April 6
IHA vs. St. Joe’s, 9 a.m.
Saddle Brook vs. Raritan, 11 a.m.
Caravel Academy (Del.) vs. Ursuline (NY), 1 p.m.
Indian Hills vs. High Point, 3 p.m.

 

 

 

2014 Softball Tournament Schedule
IHA Invitational
Saturday, April 5

IHA vs. Pennsbury (PA), 9 a.m.
Ursuline (NY) vs. Pennsbury (PA), 11 a.m.
Mount St. Dominic vs. DePaul, 1 p.m.
Livingston vs. St. John Vianney, 3 p.m.
Sunday, April 6
IHA vs. St. Joe’s, 9 a.m.
Saddle Brook vs. Raritan, 11 a.m.
Caravel Academy (Del.) vs. Ursuline (NY), 1 p.m.
Indian Hills vs. High Point, 3 p.m. – See more at: http://blog.northjersey.com/varsityaces/31809/scoops-the-almost-first-blog-of-2014-softball-season/#sthash.TfOz93N2.dpuf
2014 Softball Tournament Schedule
IHA Invitational
Saturday, April 5

IHA vs. Pennsbury (PA), 9 a.m.
Ursuline (NY) vs. Pennsbury (PA), 11 a.m.
Mount St. Dominic vs. DePaul, 1 p.m.
Livingston vs. St. John Vianney, 3 p.m.
Sunday, April 6
IHA vs. St. Joe’s, 9 a.m.
Saddle Brook vs. Raritan, 11 a.m.
Caravel Academy (Del.) vs. Ursuline (NY), 1 p.m.
Indian Hills vs. High Point, 3 p.m. – See more at: http://blog.northjersey.com/varsityaces/31809/scoops-the-almost-first-blog-of-2014-softball-season/#sthash.TfOz93N2.dpuf
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By mike051893

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