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IN THE NEWS: MSDA Softball Wins ECT

No. 3 Mount St. Dominic softball beats No. 5 Cedar Grove to win ECT (PHOTOS)

By Gerry Davidove | Click here to view NJ Advance Media article on May 18, 2019 11:10 PM, updated May 18, 2019 11:24 PM
Photo by Chris Monroe

With her teammates providing two runs to work with before she even stepped in the circle, Mount St. Dominic freshman Sophia Kiseloski did the rest.

The right hander went the distance on a two-hitter, striking out 10 and walking two to lead Mount St. Dominic, No. 3 in the NJ.com Top 20, to a 3-0 victory over No. 5 Cedar Grove in the final of the Essex County Tournament at Mike Sheppard, Sr. Field at Ivy Hill Park in Newark.

The title is the eighth overall and fourth in the last six seasons for Mount St. Dominic (23-3), the second-seed. It was the ninth appearance in the title game for top-seeded Cedar Grove (21-4), which defeated Mount St. Dominic 1-0 in last year’s final.

“I was a little overwhelmed in the beginning,” Kiseloski admitted. “To go out with two runs, it helped me a lot. “We started off well and it helped me to see that my team was behind me with two runs and it was just amazing to come out here with that.”

After walking the first batter she faced, Cedar Grove’s shortstop Katie Peterson, Kiseloski worked out the inning by striking out the cleanup hitter to strand Peterson at third.

With Alyssa Coletta on second after leading off the second with a single and being sacrificed into scoring position with one out, Kiseloski reared back and struck out the final two batters to emerge unscathed.

Kiseloski, who at one point had retired 12 straight batters, had three innings with multiple strikeouts, including striking out the side in the fifth. She ended the game by striking out her final batter with a runner on first.

“My curveball and screwball were really working well for me today and my drop was on and off sometimes, but it worked,” she said. “Whenever I was feeling a little overwhelmed, I said to myself ‘take a deep breath and you’ll do great.’” I knew that I had to take a deep breath and get myself together.”

Senior second baseman Johanna Rivera helped Kiseloski escape the sixth when, with one out, the freshman hurler had found herself with runners on first and second after an error and a single. Cedar Grove cleanup hitter stroked a hard liner on Kiseloski’s first offering right to Rivera, who caught the ball and alertly threw to first for the inning ending double play.

“Every time I’m on that field, I’m looking for that ball,” Rivera said. “That ball came to me and I knew that my first instinct was going to first with that line drive and that double play ended that inning. It felt great.”

Kasey Sekula drove in the only run that Kiseloski would need with a long double to right in the first that brought home Dani Dabroski, who reached on an error. After taking third on the throw to the plate to get Dabroski, Sekula scored when Allison Winters grounded out to second.

“This was not the first time we played Cedar Grove, so I walked into the box confident and with a lot of energy,” Sekula, a junior, said. “I was just searching for my pitch, and I saw that pitch coming in and I knew I had to swing. The best thing we could do was score in the first inning, and that’s what we did, score first and get on top.”

Cedar Grove hurler Mia Faieta allowed two hits, struck out nine, issued three walks and hit four batters. This was the third game between the teams this season with Cedar Grove taking a 2-1 decision on April 3 and Mount St. Dominic earning a 5-3 victory on May 2.

“This win is for the kids,” Mount St. Dominic co-head coach Lorenzo Sozio said. “For all the hard work we put in and the competitive schedule that we play, winning the Essex County championship means a lot to us.”

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