Monday, March 21, 2005
By Mike Ballard
RAPTOR OF THE WEEK
Senior outfielder Ed McDonnell had a big week for the Rutgers-Camden baseball team, which is ranked No. 26 nationally. McDonnell hit ..615 (8-for-13) with seven runs and six RBIs. He had five RBIs, including a grand slam, in a win over Arcadia March 30. The next day he went 5-for-6, including a double, with four runs and one RBI in a win at Franklin & Marshall. He also reached base twice by walks and once as a hit batsman during the week, and had a .923 slugging percentage. For the season, he is batting .414.
The Rutgers University-Camden softball team is on a roll, both on the playing field and in the national polls.
Rutgers-Camden broke into the Top 10 in the National Fastpitch Coaches Association Division III Top 25 poll March 30. The Lady Raptors are ranked No. 7 nationally in the first NFCA poll after being ranked No. 16 in the pre-season poll. It is the first NCAA Top 10 ranking for any sport in school history and, coupled with the baseball team being ranked No. 26, is the first time Rutgers-Camden has had two NCAA-ranked programs at the same time.
The Lady Raptors sandwiched doubleheader sweeps around the release of that poll, toppling Ursinus College, 3-0 and 2-1, March 29 and sweeping McDaniel College, 8-2 and 3-0 March 31. They saw their scheduled doubleheader against Ramapo College rained out both on April 2 and April 3 in the slated New Jersey Athletic Conference opener for both teams.
The doubleheader sweeps gave Rutgers-Camden a 14-game winning streak, tying the program record accomplished twice (March 19-April 4, 2002) and March 13-30, 2004.
Junior pitcher Michelle Schlichtig (Barrington, NJ/Haddon Heights) collected a pair of complete-game victories in both doubleheaders, raising her record to 13-0. Her two-hit shutout in the nightcap against McDaniel gave her 18 shutouts for her career, breaking the program mark she shared with Sarah O’Malley (2001-03).
In the opening game, the Green Terror scored a pair of unearned runs in the fourth inning to grab a 2-1 lead, but the Scarlet Raptors exploded with a seven-run fifth inning, sparked by the speed of freshman center fielder Jayme Feriod (Glassboro, NJ/Glassboro). Feriod led off the inning with a bunt single, then beat consecutive force attempts at second and third base to help the Raptors load the bases with no outs. Schlichtig followed with a two-run double, giving Rutgers-Camden the lead for good.
The Raptors added runs on RBI singles by sophomore catcher Mo Baney (Deptford, NJ/Deptford) and sophomore right fielder Autumn Millett (Richwood, NJ/Clearview Regional). Later in the frame, sophomore left fielder Tara Fisher (Upper Deerfield, NJ/Cumberland Regional) brought home two runs with a ground rule double, and Feriod plated Fisher with a single.
Schlichtig finished the game with a four-hitter, walking three and striking out nine. Both runs she allowed were unearned following an infield error.
Sophomore Mary Abrams took the loss, allowing 10 hits and eight earned runs. She walked two and struck out seven.
Baney had a huge night in the opening game, going 4-for-4 with two RBIs. Feriod went 2-for-3 with one run and one RBI, with all of her offensive output coming in the fifth inning.
In the nightcap, Schlichtig allowed only two singles and three walks, while striking out 14. With her 23 strikeouts on the day, she raised her career total to 416, becoming only the second Rutgers-Camden pitcher to pass 400 for her career. O’Malley is the program leader with 488.
The Raptors plated a pair of runs in the fifth inning to break open a pitchers’ duel between Schlichtig and McDaniel junior Nichol Moeller. Moeller hit freshman right fielder Kim Faust (Erial, NJ/Timber Creek) to open the frame. Pinch-runner Julie Grochowski (Williamstown, NJ/Williamstown) was sacrificed to second and went to third on a single by sophomore third baseman Alaina Giles (Willingboro, NJ/Holy Cross). After Giles stole second, Schlichtig singled home one run and Baney plated Giles with a ground out.
The Raptors added their final run on a long home run to left field by Millett, leading off the sixth inning. It was her fifth home run of the season, tying Schlichtig for the team lead.
In the sweep against Ursinus on March 29, Schlichtig collected 13 strikeouts in the opener and 14 strikeouts in the nightcap. She hurled a one-hit shutout in the opening game, allowing only an opposite-field double to junior shortstop Marci Logan in the third inning.
Rutgers-Camden scored all the runs Schlichtig needed in the third inning off of losing pitcher Erin Skinner. With one out, Feriod beat out a topper in front of the plate for a single. She scored on a two-out, two-run home run to left field by senior shortstop Celeste Chinappi (Bellmawr, NJ/Gloucester Catholic). It was the first career home run for Chinappi, who is the all-time hit leader at Rutgers-Camden with 136 hits.
Moments after Chinappi’s blast, sophomore center fielder Autumn Millett (Richwood, NJ/Clearview Regional) ripped a solo home run.
Chinappi and Giles each went 2-for-3 in the opening game for Rutgers-Camden.
In the second game, Schlichtig out-duelled Ursinus sophomore Mallory Greene.
With the score tied at 1-1, Rutgers-Camden loaded the bases with two outs in the bottom of the fourth on a walk by Grochowski, a single by junior first baseman Megan Rulon (Sewell, NJ/Clearview Regional) and a walk to Feriod. Greene appeared to be out of the jam when Schlichtig hit a pop up in the triangle between the pitcher’s mound, home plate and the first base line, but no fielder took charge and the ball dropped for the game-winning RBI single.
The Raptors scored first on a first-inning single by Schlichtig and a two-out RBI double by Baney. The Bears tied the game in the third inning on consecutive one-out singles by freshman center fielder Erin McHugh, Logan and an RBI single by sophomore right fielder Mary Reid.
Reid and Schlichtig, who each brought 14-game season-long hitting streaks into the doubleheader, saw their strings snapped in the opening game when they both went 0-for-3. Reid went 1-for-3 with the RBI in the nightcap, while Schlichtig went 3-for-3 with one run and one RBI.
Schlichtig hurled a six-hitter in the second game, allowing the one earned run and two walks while striking out 14. Greene, meanwhile, allowed seven hits, two earned runs and two walks. She fanned eight.
Logan went 2-for-3 in the nightcap as the only Bear with multiple hits. She had three hits in the doubleheader.
Schlichtig was the only Raptor with multiple hits in the nightcap.
A national ranking, two offensive explosions, the New Jersey Athletic Conference opener and a rainy weekend highlighted the week for the Rutgers-Camden baseball team, which posted a 2-1 record on the field and had a pair of games postponed by rain.
The Scarlet Raptors opened the week by breaking into the Division III national rankings, making their debut at No. 26 in the American Baseball Coaches Association/Collegiate Baseball poll released March 29. They exploded for 42 runs in back-to-back non-conference wins, outlasting Arcadia, 22-10, in a home game March 30 and posting a 20-5 victory at Franklin & Marshall College March 31. The next day, in the Raptors’ NJAC opener, they dropped a 7-2 decision against No. 19 The College of New Jersey. That was the last baseball action of the week as heavy rainstorms washed out a doubleheader at Montclair State University April 2 and the makeup scheduled for April 3. The games will tentatively be played today, April 4.
The loss to TCNJ on April 1 broke the Raptors’ eight-game winning streak. Junior righthander Joe D’Alessandro worked seven strong innings and sophomore catcher Gerard Haran went 3-for-5, including a solo home run, and had two RBIs to power the Lions to the NJAC victory.
With the score tied at 2-2, the Lions scored three times in the top of the fourth inning off Scarlet Raptor starter and loser Jason Ronca (Eastampton, NJ/Rancocas Valley). The inning started with a leadoff walk by sophomore second baseman Andrew Cosgrove. He was sacrificed to second by junior shortstop Mike Bruschini. With two outs, junior DH Rich Kropp was hit by a pitch. Back-to-back doubles by junior right fielder Chris Wilson and Haran plated the three runs, with two scoring on Wilson’s hit.
TCNJ tacked on a pair of insurance runs in the top of the ninth inning, sparked by Haran’s leadoff home run to left field.
D’Alessandro, meanwhile, worked seven innings of six-hit ball, allowing one walk and two earned runs, as he raised his record to 3-1. He struck out six.
Sophomore Blake Ortiz collected his third save, hurling two perfect innings and collecting one strikeout.
TCNJ scored single runs in the first two innings off of Ronca, including Wilson’s run-scoring fielder’s choice in the first inning and an RBI ground out by junior center fielder Charles Iacono in the second.
The Raptors bounced back to tie the game in the third inning following a leadoff single by sophomore center fielder Nate Buchter (Blackwood, NJ/Highland Regional). He went to second on a wild pitch and was singled home by freshman right fielder Joe Midili (Sewell, NJ/Washington Township). Consecutive singles by junior third baseman Brian Jakubowski (Audubon, NJ/Audubon) and junior first baseman Matt Calloway (Blackwood, NJ/Highland Regional) plated the tying run, with Calloway picking up the RBI.
In addition to Haran’s three hits, Wilson had three RBIs for the Lions. Kropp and sophomore first baseman P.J. Anzelone each collected two hits.
For the Scarlet Raptors, Buchter and Jakubowski each went 2-for-4.
Everybody hit in the games against Arcadia and Franklin & Marshall as the Raptors pounded out 41 hits and drew 20 walks and scored 42 runs. They had 25 hits alone at Franklin & Marshall.
Rutgers-Camden ripped 16 hits and took advantage of 14 walks, one hit batsman and two errors as it defeated Arcadia University, 22-10. The 22 runs were the most scored by Rutgers-Camden since a 23-4 win over Lincoln University April 9, 2002. The program record for runs came in a 26-3 victory over Widener University March 26, 1996.
In a wild game, the two teams were deadlocked at 10-10 through four innings before Rutgers-Camden senior Matt Novella (Lindenwold, NJ/Overbrook Regional) came on to shut down the Arcadia attack, hurling 3-1/3 scoreless innings of one-hit ball, walking none and striking out two. Novella, the program’s all-time leader with 51 pitching appearances, picked up the win to raise his record to 2-1. Freshman southpaw Andrew Lihotz (Philadelphia, PA/Northeast), making his collegiate debut, hurled a 1-2-3 ninth inning to wrap up the game for the Scarlet Raptors.
Rutgers-Camden, meanwhile, broke open the 10-10 game with a seven-run fifth inning, started by a leadoff single from Calloway. He scored the eventual winning run on a single by junior second baseman Nick Faragasso (Sewell, NJ/Gloucester Catholic). Sophomore DH Butch Amato (Haddon Heights, NJ/Paul VI) added a two-run triple in the frame.
For the day, Calloway went 3-for-5 with three runs and two RBIs, while senior left fielder Ed McDonnell (Marlton, NJ/Cherokee) went 2-for-4 with three runs and five RBIs, four coming on his second-inning grand slam.
The Raptors also received two hits apiece from Midili, sophomore second baseman Nick Lentine (Stratford, NJ/Sterling), sophomore catcher Tom Terrill (Sewell, NJ/Washington Township) and junior shortstop Tyler Inkster (Audubon, NJ/Audubon).
Arcadia, which collected 15 hits in the game 14 of them off the first three of the Raptors’ five pitchers was paced by sophomore first baseman John Connell, who went 4-for-4 with one run and one RBI.
The Scarlet Knights also received two hits apiece from junior shortstop John Bellis, senior third baseman Justin Loomis and freshman DH Brian Emerich.
Freshman Tim Smith, the fourth of seven Arcadia pitchers, took the loss. Smith (0-1) allowed four hits, two walks and six runs (four earned) in 1/3 of an inning.
In the win over Franklin & Marshall, which was called by darkness in the eighth inning, McDonnell went 5-for-6 with four runs and one RBI.
Faragasso went 4-for-6 with two runs and four RBIs, including three doubles to tie a single-game school record set by Ricky Flores (April 16, 2003 against Richard Stockton) and Sean Garrison (April 6, 1996, Game 2 against Ramapo).
The Raptors ripped nine doubles overall, including two by Buchter, who went 3-for-5 with one run and three RBIs.
Jakubowski went 3-for-7 with four runs and three RBIs from the leadoff spot, while junior catcher Nick Turekian (Cherry Hill, NJ/Cherry Hill East) followed Jakubowski in the batting order with a 2-for-5 day, collecting three runs, three RBIs and the game’s only home run.
Calloway went 4-for-7 with two runs and two RBIs, and senior right fielder Dustin Roach (Marlton, NJ/Cherokee) went 3-for-7 with two runs and two RBIs.
Inkster added a double and two walks, scoring twice.
Scarlet Raptors senior pitcher Paul DeMarco (Mullica Hill, NJ/Clearview Regional) worked six innings, allowing 10 hits, five walks and four earned runs, to get the win. He struck out two.
Rutgers-Camden built a 9-1 lead after three innings and scored in every inning except the seventh.
Fri. Apr. 1 Moravian College Spring Invitational (9th of 18)
1. Moravian College Grey, 297; 2. Delaware Valley College, 302; 3. Keystone College, 307; 4. Albright College, 308; 5. Ursinus College, 314; 6. Muhlenberg College, 316; 7. Dickinson College, 317; 8. Moravian College Blue, 319; 9. Rutgers University-Camden, 323; 10. Messiah College, 325; 11. University of Scranton, 327; 12. King’s College, 328; 13. Penn State-Berks, 331; 14. FDU-Florham, 332; 15. DeSales University, 333; 16. Queens (NY) College, 339; 17. East Stroudsburg University, 344; 18. Centenary (NJ) College, 354.
Mon., April 4 Lebanon Valley College Invitational 12:30 p.m.
Thur., April 7 Susquehanna University Tee-Off Invitational 12:30 p.m.
Fri., April 8 Gwynedd-Mercy College Quad 1 p.m.
Thur., April 14 Wesley College Invitational 12:30 p.m.
Fri., April 15 RU-Camden Scarlet Raptors Invitational 12 p.m.
Mon., April 18 Franklin & Marshall College Invitational 1 p.m.
Thur., April 21 Widener University Invitational 1 p.m.
The Rutgers University-Camden golf team finished ninth out of 18 teams in its season-opening outing at the Moravian College Spring Invitational April 1 in Bath, PA. The event was held at the par 71 Southmoore Golf Course.
Rutgers-Camden shot a 323 to finish four strokes behind eighth-place Moravian College Blue. The winning team, with a 297, was Moravian College Grey, led by individual medalist Bryan Ott. The Moravian freshman shot a 71 and won on a tie-breaker with Lou Shutts of Delaware Valley College. Ott had the lower back-nine score with a 35.
Leading the way for the Scarlet Raptors was junior Chris Binder (Collingswood, NJ/Collingswood), who shot a 77 to finish tied for 14th place out of the 86 participating golfers. Sophomore Joe Zulli (Bellmawr, NJ/Paul VI) and junior Brian Mason (Bridgeton, NJ/Bridgeton) each shot an 81 to tie for 37th for the Raptors, while junior John Goff (Haddon Heights, NJ/Paul VI) shot an 84 to tie for 57th.
Rounding out the Rutgers-Camden team was sophomore Rob Burgess (Sewell, NJ/Gloucester Catholic), who shot a 92. He finished 81st.
The Raptors have a busy week ahead as they play at the Lebanon Valley College Invitational Monday, go to the Susquehanna University Tee-Off Invitational Thursday and compete in the Gwynedd-Mercy College Invitational Friday, April 8.
TRACK & FIELD
The rainy weekend conditions prevented the Scarlet Raptors from opening their spring season at the third annual Danny Curran Invitational, which was held April 2 at Widener University.
The Scarlet Raptors return to action Saturday, April 9, at the Messiah College Invitational.