Softball crushes Rutgers-Newark in latest NJAC win

The Ramapo College softball team once again displayed dominance in the New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC), sweeping its fourth straight conference doubleheader, this one against Rutgers-Newark. The Roadrunners won both games in five-inning mercy rules, coming out on top in game one by a score of 12-0 and in game two, 11-2. Ramapo is now 26-7-1 on the year, including going 10-1-1 in the conference, putting them in second place on the season.

Ramapo got on the board early as the team scored three runs in the bottom of the first inning. Kori Gargiulo got the scoring started with an RBI single, her ninth RBI on the season. A few batters later, Hannah Hensler drove in two more with a single up the middle.

The Roadrunners’ offense exploded for six runs in the second inning. Mahogany Wheeler brought home the first two runs of the inning with an RBI double. The next batter, Avery Bartolomeo, drove in Wheeler with an RBI double of her own then came around to score on a wild pitch. Gargiulo scored on an error and then Hensler came in on a Katie Rygiel RBI single.

Ramapo scored their final three runs of the game in the fourth inning on an Alexis Corra RBI double, Wheeler sacrifice fly and Bartolomeo RBI single. In total, the Roadrunners pounded out 18 hits in just five innings against pitchers Madison Umlauf and Kayla Cardozo. 

Kassy Stefanski recorded her ninth win of the year, lowering her season ERA to 3.14. She went four shutout innings, gave up one hit, struck out six and walked two. She was relieved by Sara Cappetti, who went two-thirds of the inning, and Brooke Knight, who recorded the final out.

Game two started off a bit more uneventful, with neither team recording a run in the first two innings. Rutgers-Newark took a 1-0 lead in the top of the third after Cardozo came home on an error by Hensler.

The softball team improved to 10-1-1 in the NJAC. Photo courtesy of Ramapo Athletics

The Roadrunners picked up their shortstop in the bottom of the inning, scoring eight runs. Rygiel tied the game with a solo blast to left field, her second of the season. After Corra reached base via a single, Wheeler hit her third home run of the season, giving Ramapo a 3-1 lead. After a Hensler sacrifice fly, Anna Messina drove home two runs on a single and then later came around to score on a wild pitch. Wheeler brought home another run with a double to round out the inning, giving Ramapo an 8-1 lead.

After Rutgers-Newark got one back in the fourth, Wheeler put an exclamation mark on her day, hitting her second home run, this time a three-run homer to give her six RBIs in the game. This blast put the game into a mercy rule and ended with a score of 11-2. 

In addition to her 3-4 day at the plate with two homers and six RBIs, Wheeler also recorded the win, her eighth of the season. She went five innings, gave up two runs (one earned), five hits, struck out one and walked one.

In addition to the wins, Ramapo had two players earn NJAC honors this week. Gargiulo was named NJAC Rookie of the Week, batting .467 with two doubles and three RBIs. Knight was named NJAC Rookie Pitcher of the Week as she pitched 8.1 shutout innings in relief, giving up only one hit and striking out 12.

The Roadrunners will finish out their regular season with three road NJAC doubleheaders. The first is against New Jersey City University on Saturday. They will then travel to Glassboro to take on first-place Rowan on Tuesday and will play The College of New Jersey on Saturday, April 29 in the final game before the NJAC Playoffs begin on May 6.

Featured photo courtesy of Ramapo Athletics