Some of the faces have changed, but Livingston keeps on winning. The Lancers remained No. 1 in the FMTC Top 10 for 2014 after winning its first three games of the season last week, defeating West Essex, Cedar Grove and Pascack Hills.
Jason Daily’s team will face some big tests this week, starting on Monday when it hosts Nutley. The Livingston-Nutley rivalry has become one of the better ones in the Super Essex Conference. I still say Nutley’s come-from-behind, 5-4 win over Livingston in the 2011 Essex County Tournament semifinals, was one of the better games I’ve ever seen.
Anyway, following Monday’s game, Livingston travels to Mount St. Dominic on April 9. Those two teams have clearly been the two best in Essex County since 2012.
Mount St. Dominic is also 3-0, including an impressive 4-2 win over DePaul Catholic last Saturday at the IHA Tournament.
This may not be breaking news, but MSD is good. Real good.
What was most impressive about last Saturday’s win was the way the Lions responded to an early 1-0 deficit. Its 6, 8 and 9 hitters were a combined 3-for-6, with a homer, two doubles, two walks and three runs scored. Helyna Bissel homered and Bria Bartsch’s run-scoring double in the fifth tied the game at one, but clearly gave the Lions the momentum.
Later in that inning, Alexandra Dabroski hit a big two-out, two run double that plated Ashley Kowalski, who had walked, and Sam Platt, who reached on a fielder’s choice.
This team has experienced players and some talented youngsters, including winning pitcher Kelsey Oh, a freshman, who fanned 11 and walked one against DePaul.
So, a big week approaches. Let’s take a look at the updated rankings. It’s still kind of early, so past the top four, it’s still a process to see which teams qualify for the top 10.
2-Mount St. Dominic (3-0)
4-West Essex (1-1)
7-Newark Academy (1-1)
9-Cedar Grove (1-2)
10-Glen Ridge (2-1)