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College Baseball:
Raptor of the Week: Nick Faragasso

Monday, March 14, 2005

By Mike Ballard
RutgersCamden Sports Correspondent

Nick Faragasso (Sewell, NJ/Gloucester Catholic)

It didn’t take Nick Faragasso long to make the transition to Rutgers-Camden baseball. In his first five games with the Raptors since transferring from Div. II University of New Haven (CT), the junior second baseman hit .500 (10-for-20) with three runs and eight RBIs. He had three doubles, one triple and one walk, and was successful on his lone stolen base attempt. Faragasso’s addition paid off immediately for the Scarlet Raptors when he collected one RBI in each of his four plate appearances in a season-opening win over Albright, going 2-for-3 and adding a sacrifice fly. In his first four games he hit .625 (10-for-16) before having his four-game hitting streak snapped in a win over Occidental.


Mon., Mar. 7 Rutgers-Camden 10, Albright College 2
Sat., Mar. 12 Linfield College 8, Rutgers-Camden 7 (10 innings)
Sat., Mar. 12 Rutgers-Camden 4, University of Redlands 3 (6 innings, darkness)
Sun., Mar. 13 Rutgers-Camden 12, Wisconsin-La Crosse 7
Sun., Mar. 13 Rutgers-Camden 14, Occidental 2


Tue., Mar. 15 vs. Wesleyan (CT) @ Claremont-Mudd Scripps 11 a.m.
Wed., Mar. 16 vs. Puget Sound (WA) @ Claremont-Mudd Scripps 11 a.m.
Fri., Mar. 18 vs. Occidental (CA) @ Whittier 8:30 a.m.
Fr., Mar. 18 at Whittier (CA) 11:30 a.m.
Sat., Mar. 19 vs. Wisconsin-La Crosse @ Pomona-Pitzer 8:30 a.m.
Sat., Mar. 19 at Pomona-Pitzer (CA) 2:30 p.m.

After having five early-season games postponed by inclement weather, the Rutgers-Camden baseball team was singing its own version of California Dreamin’ while looking forward to its spring break.

The Scarlet Raptors found plenty to be happy about, in addition to the perfect baseball weather, going 3-1 during their first four games in the Golden State. They also found a few milestones, as head coach Keith Williams captured his 100th career victory at Rutgers-Camden with the Raptors and junior first baseman Matt Calloway (Blackwood, NJ/Highland Regional) collected his 100th hit and set a career record for putouts.

The Scarlet Raptors defeated Wisconsin-La Crosse, 12-7, in the opening game on a split California Classic doubleheader March 13, giving Williams his 100th career victory at Rutgers-Camden.

In the nightcap, Calloway went 5-for-5 and passed the 100-hit plateau for his career as the Raptors toppled host Occidental College, 14-2, in a game called after seven innings by a 10-run rule.

The sweep left the Raptors with a 4-1 record, Williams with 101 wins at Rutgers-Camden and Calloway with 104 hits in his career. Calloway went 7-for-11 on the day with three runs scored and one RBI. He became the 10th player in program history to reach the 100-hit milestone.

Calloway added another milestone to his credit, making 21 putouts in the two games to raise his career total to 618 and setting a new Rutgers-Camden program record. He passed the 615 putouts by Jamie Schwantes from 1994-97.

Williams, meanwhile, now stands at 101-114-1 early in his seventh year with the Scarlet Raptors. He is 94-65 in the four-plus years from 2001 to now, following a 7-49 mark while building the program in his first two seasons.

Trailing Wisconsin-La Crosse (0-3), 4-2, the Raptors exploded for eight runs in the bottom of the fifth inning to pull out the first game. Senior catcher Dustin Roach (Marlton, NJ/Cherokee) doubled home the tying runs and scored the go-ahead run on a double by junior third baseman Tyler Inkster (Audubon, NJ/Audubon). Freshman center fielder Joe Midili (Sewell, NJ/Washington Township) added a two-run double, Calloway singled home one run and senior right fielder Ed McDonnell (Marlton, NJ/Cherokee) hit a run-scoring double in the frame. The last run scored on a ground out by junior second baseman Nick Faragasso (Sewell, NJ/Gloucester Catholic).

For the game, Roach went 3-for-4 with two runs and two RBIs, while Faragasso went 3-for-5 with one run and two RBIs and Midili was 3-for-6 with one run and two RBIs. The Raptors’ 18-hit attack also featured two hits apiece by Calloway, McDonnell and Inkster.

Junior righty Derek Heritage (Cedarbrook, NJ/Edgewood) worked seven innings, allowing 12 hits, seven runs (five earned) and three walks to pick up his first decision of the season. He struck out four.

In the nightcap, sophomore righty Jason Ronca (Eastampton, NJ/Rancocas Valley) was in command, throwing a four-hitter with one walk and six strikeouts. The only runs he allowed were unearned, reaching base on back-to-back errors in the sixth inning.

Calloway, Inkster and sophomore DH Butch Amato (Haddon Heights, NJ/Paul VI) powered the Raptors’ 20-hit attack. Calloway went 5-for-5 with two runs, while Amato went 4-for-5 with four runs and three RBIs, tying a single-game program record with three doubles. Inkster, meanwhile, was a one-man wrecking crew, going 4-for-4 with two runs and six RBIs, including a grand slam to cap a five-run second inning. It was the first grand slam for the Raptors since fellow teammate Jim Slade (Williamstown, NJ/Williamstown) hit one against New Jersey City University in the first inning of the second game of a doubleheader April 19, 2003.

Roach also homered in the game, hitting a two-run shot in the fourth inning.

In a 4-3 victory over the University of Redlands on the evening of March 12, Amato singled home the winning run in the bottom of the sixth inning and the game was called due to darkness as Rutgers-Camden edged the Bulldogs, 4-3, at the California Classic.

In their win over Redlands (4-7), the Raptors received a complete-game effort from junior righty Tom Ford (Laurel Springs, NJ/Paul VI) in his first outing of the year. Ford worked six innings, allowing seven hits and three earned runs. He struck out four and didn’t walk a batter.

After Redlands built a 3-0 lead through 1-1/2 innings, Rutgers-Camden scored two in the bottom of the second inning. McDonnell who went 3-for-3 with two runs, singled to left. He advanced to third on a double by Faragasso, who went 2-for-3 with one run on the day.

After Amato walked, Inkster hit a sacrifice fly and Faragasso also advanced to third. Faragasso and Amato then pulled a double steal, with Faragasso swiping home.

The Raptors tied the game in the fourth on a double by McDonnell and a two-out RBI double by Roach.

With darkness approaching in the bottom of the sixth, McDonnell opened the frame with a single and was removed for pinch-runner Dean Straga (Mullica Hill, NJ/Clearview Regional). Faragasso singled Straga to second, and Amato ended the game with a run-scoring single to right.

In their California opener earlier that same day, Linfield College senior center fielder Tommy Paterson hit a game-winning RBI single with two outs in the 10th inning to lift the Wildcats over Rutgers-Camden, 8-7, in a game at the California Classic March 12.

In a back-and-forth battle, the Raptors held a 7-6 lead entering the ninth inning before the Wildcats, ranked No. 8 in the pre-season NCAA Division III poll, tied the game. The tying run scored on a one-out RBI single by senior first baseman Alex Justus, who went 4-for-5 with one run and three RBIs on the day.

Linfield won it in the 10th after senior shortstop Grant Boustead drew a one-out walk. He advanced one out later on another walk and scored on Paterson’s single.

The Scarlet Raptors were trailing, 1-0, before they exploded for five runs in the sixth inning, aided by back-to-back RBI singles from Faragasso and sophomore right fielder Nate Buchter (Blackwood, NJ/Highland Regional). The big frame was capped by a three-run double from Roach.

Linfield, however, bounced right back with its own five-spot in the bottom of the sixth, aided by a two-run triple from senior right fielder Aaron McFarland. McFarland then scored the go-ahead run on a sacrifice fly by Boustead.

The Scarlet Raptors rebounded with two runs in the seventh on back-to-back RBI triples by McDonnell and Faragasso. They held that 7-6 lead until the ninth inning.

After a snowy start to its season, which forced five postponements, Rutgers-Camden finally opened its season with a home game March 7. The Scarlet Raptors rode the strong pitching of senior Matt Ulmer (Beverly, NJ/Holy Cross) and a 12-hit attack to a 10-2 win over Albright College.

Leading the Rutgers-Camden offense was a quartet of juniors: Faragasso, shortstop Brian Jakubowski (Audubon, NJ/Audubon), catcher Nick Turekian (Cherry Hill, NJ/Cherry Hill East) and Calloway.

Faragasso, in his first game at Rutgers-Camden after transferring from the Division II University of New Haven (CT), collected one RBI in all four of his plate appearances, going 2-for-3 with a sacrifice fly. Jakubowski went 2-for-4 and scored four runs, while Turekian went 3-for-4 with two RBIs and Calloway went 2-for-4 with two runs.

Ulmer, who hurled shutout ball until being reached for three doubles and two runs in the seventh inning, finished with a seven-hitter over his seven innings, walking one and striking out one. It was his 13th career win, four shy of the Rutgers-Camden record set by Gar Miller (1957-60).

Rutgers-Camden scored a pair of runs in the first inning after a single and stolen base by Jakubowski and a walk to Calloway. McDonnell singled home the first run of the season and Faragasso followed with another RBI single.

Faragasso added an RBI single in the third inning, Turekian singled home a run in the fourth and Faragasso added an RBI single in the fifth as the Raptors took a 5-0 lead.

Albright reached Ulmer in the seventh on three doubles. Freshman DH Chad Mackey started the rally with a one-out double. Junior second baseman Kevin Christine and senior right fielder Patrick Bergmaier added RBI doubles.

The Raptors put the game away with a five-run bottom of the seventh, aided by a two-run pinch-hit double by sophomore Tom Terrill (Sewell, NJ/Washington Township). McDonnell, Faragasso and Turekian added RBIs in the frame.

Mon., Mar. 7 Rutgers-Camden 3, Neumann College 0
Mon., Mar. 7 Rutgers-Camden 12, Neumann College 1
Fri., Mar. 11 Rutgers-Camden 9, Lynchburg College 0
Fri., Mar. 11 York (PA) College 4, Rutgers-Camden 2
Sat., Mar. 12 Rutgers-Camden 7, Christopher Newport University 0
Sat., Mar. 12 Rutgers-Camden 10, Manhattanville College 0

Mon., Mar 14 vs. Ripon College, WI (doubleheader) 10 a.m.
Tues., Mar. 15 vs. St. Thomas Aquinas College, NY (doubleheader) 10 a.m.
Wed., Mar. 16 vs. Ohio Valley College, WV (doubleheader) 6 p.m.
Thur., Mar. 17 vs. Mitchell College, CT (doubleheader) 10 a.m.
Fri., Mar. 18 vs. Molloy College, NY (doubleheader) 10 a.m.

The Rutgers-Camden softball team entered the season ranked No. 16 nationally, and the Lady Raptors lived up to their billing with a torrid 5-1 start during the first week of the season.

Rutgers-Camden swept Neumann College, 3-0 and 12-1, at home on March 7, then won three of its four games against solid competition in the Sea Gull Classic at Salisbury University March 11-12. The Raptors defeated Lynchburg College, 9-0, and lost to York, 4-2, on March 11, then posted a double-shutout sweep over Christopher Newport University (7-0) and Manhattanville College (10-0) March 12.

The Raptors posted four shutouts in their first six games, including three straight by junior Michelle Schlichtig (Barrington, NJ/Haddon Heights), who opened the season with 19 straight scoreless innings. The school record is 33.

Speaking of records, the Raptors already set a pair of new career marks during the first week of the season, and are on the verge of a few others. Both records to fall were held by former Raptor great Sarah O’Malley (2001-2003). Senior shortstop Celeste Chinappi (Bellmawr, NJ/Gloucester Catholic) raised her career hit mark to 123, passing O’Malley’s standard of 120. Senior pitcher/outfielder Becky Johnson (Bridgeton, NJ/Cumberland Regional), meanwhile, raised her career total bases to 194 (passing O’Malley’s 190) and increased her career RBI total to 81, one shy of O’Malley’s school standard. In addition, Chinappi and Johnson own 67 and 65 runs scored, respectively, in their career. O’Malley’s record total is 73, while Kristen Stewart is second on the career list with 70 runs from 1999-2002.

During the first week of the season, meanwhile, Chinappi also raised her own career records to 130 games, 403 at bats, seven HBP and 201 assists. Sophomore catcher Mo Baney (Deptford, NJ/Deptford), meanwhile, raised her ongoing career putout record to 441.

On the mound, Johnson and Schlichtig both raised their career shutout marks to 14. O’Malley holds the school record with 17.

The week ended in Salisbury March 12 when the Lady Raptors blanked Christopher Newport, 7-0, as Schlichtig tossed a two-hitter, and then toppled Manhattanville, 10-0, behind Johnson’s six-hit effort.

In the opening game, junior first baseman Megan Rulon (Sewell, NJ/Clearview Regional) paced a nine-hit Raptor attack, going 4-for-4 with two doubles, one run scored and three RBIs. Her two-run single in the second inning game Rutgers-Camden a 2-0 lead and provided all the support Schlichtig needed as she tossed her third consecutive shutout to open the season. Schlichtig (3-0) walked five, struck out 12 and allowed only a second-inning double and a fifth-inning single against a strong Christopher Newport (7-4) team.

Johnson added a 1-for-4 performance with two RBIs, and it was her fourth-inning RBI single that gave her a school record of 191 career total bases. She passed the mark of 190 set by Sarah O’Malley (2001-2003), and went on to extend her mark to 194 total bases by the end of the second game.

Johnson, who also had four RBIs while pitching her shutout in the second game, finished with six RBIs on the day as she headed off on the Raptors’ Florida trip only one shy of O’Malley’s career mark of 82 RBIs.

Rutgers-Camden also had a big first game from sophomore right fielder Autumn Millett (Richwood, NJ/Clearview Regional), who went 2-for-3 with two runs and one RBI. She also added a stolen base.

In the nightcap, Johnson went 2-for-4 with two runs and her four RBIs, while scattering six hits in her shutout. She walked one and struck out eight against Manhattanville.

Schlichtig went 3-for-4 with two runs and one RBI in the nightcap, while sophomore third baseman Alaina Giles (Willingboro, NJ/Holy Cross) also went 3-for-4. She scored one run and added two RBIs.

Chinappi, who became the first player in program history to log over 400 at bats in her career, went 2-for-3 with two runs and one RBI.

Rutgers-Camden scored all the runs Johnson needed in a four-run third inning. Millett broke the scoreless tie with a bases-loaded walk. Johnson singled home two runs and Giles added an RBI single.

In opening-day action at the Sea Gull Classic, Schlichtig fired a three-hit five-inning shutout in the opening game and Rutgers-Camden posted a 9-0 victory over Lynchburg College in a five-inning game. The Lady Raptors lost their second game of the day, 4-2, to York College (PA) on three unearned runs off losing pitcher Johnson.

Schlichtig walked one and struck out seven. The Lady Raptors scored all the runs she needed in a four-run fourth inning, sparked by a bases-clearing triple from Millett. She scored on a single by freshman first baseman Kathleen Dreitlein (Berkeley Heights, NJ/Governor Livingston).

Millett also singled home a pair of runs in a five-run fifth inning, while sophomore left fielder Tara Fisher (Upper Deerfield, NJ/Cumberland Regional) added a two-run double.

The Raptors added a couple historical moments in the game, beginning with a two-out single by Chinappi in the third inning. It was the 121st hit by Chinappi in a Rutgers-Camden uniform, breaking the program record set by O’Malley.

O’Malley’s career total bases mark was tied in the fifth inning when Johnson poked an RBI single to give her 190 total bases at Rutgers-Camden.

In the nightcap, York scored a pair of unearned runs in the sixth inning on an error and three hits to break open a 1-1 tie and hand Johnson her first loss of the season. She struck out six, allowed four hits and didn’t walk a batter in her seven innings of work.

For the Spartans, freshman pitcher Megan Mickles hurled a four-hitter, allowing four walks and two earned runs. She struck out seven. Schlichtig collected two of the Lady Raptors’ four hits, including a solo home run in the fourth inning. She also had a first-inning double.

The Lady Raptors opened their season a day early as the games against Neumann were moved from March 8 to March 7 due to the weather forecast. Schlichtig was ready for the early start as she tossed a one-hit shutout in the opening game for a 3-0 win. Johnson allowed only one unearned run during a second-game three-hitter as the Lady Raptors won, 12-1.

Offensively, Chinappi poked three hits on the day to lift her career total to 120, tying O’Malley’s program record.

Giles went 4-for-7 in the twinbill sweep, while Dreitlein and Baney each went 3-for-4. Dreitlein also scored four runs.

Schlichtig allowed only a two-out single in the seventh inning – one out shy of a no-hitter – to Neumann’s freshman right fielder Lauren Gallagher. Schlichtig finished with one walk and 12 strikeouts.

The Raptors scored the only run Schlichtig needed in the first inning on an RBI single by Baney. They tacked on two runs in the fourth inning on a two-run single by Fisher.

In the nightcap, Rutgers-Camden broke the game open early with a six-run first inning featuring seven hits, a walk and an error. Dreitlein and Fisher each had a two-run double, while Millett and Rulon each added RBI singles.

Millett clubbed a two-run home run in the second inning and the Raptors added four runs in the third, two of them on a single by Dreitlein, who finished the game with four RBIs. Giles had an RBI single and Millett closed the scoring with a sacrifice fly as she also had four RBIs in the nightcap.

Johnson walked two and struck out eight. She allowed only a fifth-inning run after a walk came around to score on consecutive passed balls.

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