MSDA Wins Third ECT in Four Years
Kelsey Oh masterful as No. 7 Mount St. Dominic wins third ECT in four years
By Jeremy Schneider | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com on May 20, 2017
NEWARK — It was the match-up softball fans in Essex County had been expecting all season. Mount St. Dominic and West Essex, the clear-cut top teams in the county and both state title contenders, met in the Essex County Tournament final for the second time in three seasons on Saturday.
While it was closer than the 18-1 game when these teams met in 2015, the result was the same — a Mount St. Dominic title.
Kelsey Oh struck out 14 batters, including seven looking to power Mount St. Dominic, No. 7 in the NJ.com Top 20, past No. 5 West Essex for a 3-0 victory at Mike Sheppard Sr. Field that clinched the program’s third Essex County Tournament title in four years and seventh overall.”
Kelsey has been the two-time, probably three-time Gatorade Player of the Year the last couple of weeks. She’s turned it up a notch and she’s relaxed, she’s out there and she’s in the zone right now,” Mount St. Dominic co-coach Rob Stern said. “She’s lights-out, you can count the hits on your hands.”
Oh was dominant throughout the game and working out of the little trouble she encountered. When West Essex notched two singles in the fourth inning, the South Carolina-bound senior worked a strikeout to end the threat. She scattered five hits over seven innings and walked none.”
It’s an amazing feeling, especially missing the finals last year,” Oh said. “I think it lit a fire under everyone, even the people who weren’t here, they almost wanted it more. We were all fighting.”
Top-seeded Mount St. Dominic wasted no time building a lead, bringing home a run in the bottom of the first inning. Sarah Taffett hit a single to right field that was misplayed, allowing her to go all the way to third base even though she collided with second-seeded West Essex’s first baseman. Julianna Kocenski, fresh off tossing a one-hit shutout over eight innings in the semifinals on Friday night, launched a fly ball to centerfield in the next at-bat to drive in Taffett and give the Lady Lions a 1-0 lead.”
That’s a great at-bat, she’s been here a few times in that spot and came through,” Stern said. “We talk about situational hitting. Right there, do we want a double, do we want a single. She knew her job right there: Get a run.”
The Lady Lion lead tripled in the bottom of the fourth inning when Ali Winters singled and took second on an error, and then was driven in by Dani Dabroski with a single through the left side of the infield. A well-executed Marisa Jenkins squeeze bunt drove her in to bring the lead to 3-0.
West Essex ace Sami Huetter was strong in the circle as well, limiting the damage when Mount St. Dominic did score, but was outdueled by Oh — and fittingly, Oh struck Huetter out to seal the victory.”
It means so much, everyone has worked so hard,” Oh said. “West Essex is a great team, and for it to come down to that, I think that was really great.”
See the NJ.com article, photos, and video.