The Mount St. Dominic softball team has advanced to the championship game of the North Jersey, Non-Public A state tournament for the third straight year. It did so by defeating Immaculate Heart Academy, which it lost to the past two years in the championship game.

The fourth-seeded Lions (24-7) defeated top-seeded IHA, 3-1, in 11 innings in the semifinal round on Tuesday, May 29, in Washington Township. They will next take on second-seeded Holy Angels on Thursday, May 31, at Ivy Hill Park, Seton Hall University. MSDA is attempting to win their first sectional title since 2014 when they also won the Non-Public A group title.

Julianna Kocenski pitched 11 innings, giving up four hits and one run and striking out 13.

Sarah Taffet hit a two-RBI single to bring in the winning and go-ahead runs. Dani Dabroski hit an RBI sacrifice fly to score the Lions’ first run.

‘Great Program’

It was the first time that the Lions defeated IHA since 2014 when they defeated IHA in the sectional final. IHA defeated the Lions in the sectional final in 2016 and 2017.

“IHA has a great program and we seem to match up every year, which is a testament to both programs,” said Mount St. Dominic co-head coach Rob Stern. “We always look forward to the game. They have a very good lineup and it’s always a close game.”

The Lions defeated Paramus Catholic, the fifth seed, 2-1, on Wednesday, May 23.

Dani Dabroski was 3-for-3 with a two-RBI triple to knock in our runs,” Stern said. “Dani has been clutch for us all season.”

Kocenski pitched 6 1/3 innings, giving up one run and four hits and striking out 13. Kayla Oh had three hits.

The Lions defeated Bergen Tech, 15-0, on Friday, May 25. Kasey Sekula had five RBI and a home run.

Mount St. Dominic lost to Morris Knolls, 3-2, on Saturday, May 26. Sekula and Oh each drove in a run.

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