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College Softball:
Raptor of the Week: Autumn Millett

Monday, April 24, 2006

By Mike Ballard
RutgersCamden Sports Correspondent

Autumn Millett (Richwood, NJ/Clearview Regional)

Junior right fielder Autumn Millett went 6-for-12 (.500) with six runs, nine RBIs and three home runs in a pair of doubleheader sweeps last week. In a sweep over Richard Stockton April 18, she went 3-for-5 with seven RBIs and a home run in each game. She followed that with a 3-for-7 day in a sweep at Neumann College April 19, including a two-run home run in the top of the seventh inning of the opening game, snapping a 1-1 tie and giving Rutgers-Camden a 3-1 win. That home run was the 19th of her career, tying the program record set by Becky Johnson from 2002-05.

SOFTBALL (28-4 overall/12-0 NJAC)


Tue. 18 Rutgers-Camden 8-8, Richard Stockton College 0-3 (first game 5 innings)
Wed. 19 Rutgers-Camden 3-5, Neumann College 1-4
Sat. 22 at Kean University (DH), ppd. to April 23
Sun. 23 at Kean University (DH), ppd. to April 24


Mon. 24 at Kean University (doubleheader) 3 p.m.
Tue. 25 New Jersey City University (doubleheader) 3 p.m.
Thur. 27 Hunter College (doubleheader) 5 p.m.
Fri. 28 Ursinus College (doubleheader) 5:30 p.m.
Sat. 29 Rutgers-Newark (doubleheader) 1 p.m.

Rainy weather and unplayable field conditions were the only things that could stop the Rutgers-Camden softball team’s winning streak last week. The Lady Raptors, ranked No. 8 nationally, ran their streak to 18 straight wins with road sweeps at Richard Stockton College April 18 (8-0 in five innings and 8-3) and at Neumann College April 19 (3-1 and 5-4). A scheduled weekend doubleheader at Kean University was rained out both days, forcing the tentative makeup date to be Monday, April 24.

In the non-conference doubleheader at Neumann College, the Lady Raptors provided plenty of dramatics in the top of the seventh inning in both games. Junior right fielder Autumn Millett (Richwood, NJ/Clearview Regional) ripped a two-run game-winning home run to win the opening game, 3-1, and junior catcher Mo Baney (Deptford, NJ/Deptford) hit a two-out, two-run single to capture the nightcap, 5-4.

Millett’s game-winning shot in the first game scored freshman center fielder Marissa Van Cleef (Hillsborough, NJ/Hillsborough), who reached on a one-out single and stole second base. The home run was Millett’s third round-tripper in three games (one in each game), fourth of the season and the 19th of her career, tying Becky Johnson’s (2002-05) program record.

Millett’s shot broke up a pitchers’ duel between the Lady Raptors’ senior Michelle Schlichtig (Barrington, NJ/Haddon Heights) and a pair of Neumann hurlers, with freshman Angela Sebasto taking the loss. Schlichtig hurled a five-hitter, allowing one earned run and no walks. She struck out 11 in raising her record to 15-2.

Junior third baseman Megan Farrell (Medford, NJ/Bishop Eustace Prep) went 2-for-3 in the first game for the Raptors. For the Knights, junior shortstop Kim Zlupko had two of the five hits off of Schlichtig.

In the nightcap, Neumann was within one out of breaking the Raptors’ winning streak. Trailing, 4-3, Millett hit a one-out single in the top of the seventh inning and Schlichtig reached on an error. A walk to sophomore first baseman Kathleen Dreitlein (Berkeley Heights, NJ/Governor Livingston) loaded the bases. Baney followed with a two-run single, scoring Millett and freshman pinch-runner Valeri Bohn (Delran, NJ/Holy Cross).

Baney’s hit made a winner out of Raptor reliever Farrell, who worked one scoreless inning to raise her record to 6-1. She struck out one.

Schlichtig pitched a perfect bottom of the seventh, striking out one, to record her fourth save of the year, setting a single-season program mark. She passed the mark of three set by Jamie White in 2003. Schlichtig also extended her career record to six saves.

The Raptors scored two runs in the top of the first inning on a two-run single by Farrell, but Neumann bounced back with a three-run first, featuring five hits off Raptor sophomore starter Therese Taraschi (Haddonfield, NJ/Haddonfield). The big hit was a two-run home run by freshman designated player Caitlin Hanrahan.

The Raptors tied the game in the third on a single by Millett and a run-scoring single by Dreitlein. The Knights regained the lead in the fourth on an RBI single by Zlupko.

Sophomore designated player Amber Parker (Pennsauken, NJ/Pennsauken) went 1-for-3 in each game for the Raptors and now owns a seven-game hitting streak, the longest current string on the club. She has hit safely in 14 of her last 15 games, going 19-for-43 (.442) in that span.

In their first doubleheader of the week, a conference sweep at Richard Stockton College April 18, Millett collected seven RBIs and hit a home run in each game and Schlichtig was the winning pitcher in both games. The first game was called after five innings by the eight-run mercy rule.

Schlichtig hurled a two-hitter with no walks and 11 strikeouts in the opener. It was her seventh shutout of the season and extended her program record to 30 career shutouts.

Van Cleef went 3-for-4 in the game, scoring on all three of her singles in the first, second and fourth innings. She opened the game with a base hit and was sacrificed to second by Millett. She scored on a single by Dreitlein, who earlier in the day was named the ECAC Metro Div. III Player of the Week, following her NJAC Player of the Week honor April 17.

In the second inning, Parker doubled and scored on a single by sophomore second baseman Jayme Feriod (Glassboro, NJ/Glassboro). Van Cleef also singled in the frame and scored on a Schlichtig single.

The Raptors added two more runs in the fourth inning on a Van Cleef single and Millett’s two-run home run, her second round-tripper of the season.

In addition to Van Cleef, Parker went 3-for-3 with a double and one run, while Millett was 2-for-3 with one run and three RBIs. Schlichtig and Feriod each added two hits.

In the second game, Farrell went 2-for-4 with a pair of doubles and hurled 5-2/3 innings, allowing two hits, two runs and one walk. She fanned five and stood to be the winning pitcher until Stockton rallied from a 3-0 deficit to tie the game in the sixth inning. Schlichtig relieved Farrell and worked the final 1-1/3 innings, allowing two hits, one run and one walk. She struck out two.

Schlichtig (14-2) ended up as the winning pitcher when the Raptors rallied for five runs in the bottom of the sixth. Baney opened the frame with a single. Pinch-runner Bohn advanced on a Parker sacrifice and scored on a single by freshman pinch-hitter Mandi Moore (Haddonfield, NJ/Haddon Township). Later in the frame, Millett ripped a three-run home run to finish the day with four RBIs, and Dreitlein added an RBI double, her 13th two-bagger of the year.

Schlichtig finished with three singles on the day, giving her a new program record with 226 career total bases. She passed the mark of 225 set by Becky Johnson from 2002-05.

BASEBALL (19-12 overall/6-6 NJAC)


Thur. 20 William Paterson University 8, Rutgers-Camden 6
Fri. 21 The College of New Jersey 12, Rutgers-Camden 2
Sat. 22 at New Jersey City University (DH), ppd. to April 23
Sun. 23 at New Jersey City University (DH), ppd. to April 24


Mon. 24 at New Jersey City University (doubleheader) 1:30 p.m.
Thur. 27 at Rowan University 3:30 p.m.
Fri. 28 at William Paterson University 3:30 p.m.
Sat. 29 Kean University (doubleheader) 5 p.m.*
* tentative time following Camden Riversharks home game

The road to the New Jersey Athletic Conference playoffs suddenly became a tougher journey for the Rutgers-Camden baseball team, which went from a first-place tie to a dogfight for berth in the six-team playoffs in one week. Prior to a doubleheader loss to Rutgers-Newark on April 15, the Scarlet Raptors were tied for first place in the conference. After that twinbill and a pair of losses during the week to William Paterson (8-6 April 20) and The College of New Jersey (12-2 April 21), the Raptors entered the final week of the season in sixth place, barely ahead of Rowan University, with the Profs holding the head-to-head tie-breaker and having one less game to play.

Rain and field conditions postponed the Raptors’ weekend doubleheader at New Jersey City, forcing a makeup date on Monday, April 24.

In the 12-2 loss at TCNJ, junior left fielder Jeff Botti went 2-for-4 with two runs, a home run and four RBIs to pace a 13-hit attack for the Lions, who are ranked No. 2 in the American Baseball Coaches Association/Collegiate Baseball Division III national poll. TCNJ, which entered the game averaging 11.2 runs per game, scored in double figures for the 18th time in its 30 games.

TCNJ took a quick 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning following a leadoff single and a stolen base by senior center fielder Charles Iacono. He advanced to third on a fly out and scored on a fielder’s choice grounder by junior first baseman Blake Bullis. Senior right fielder Chris Wilson followed with an RBI double to right field.

The Scarlet Raptors cut the gap to 2-1 in the top of the third on a two-out single by senior shortstop Brian Jakubowski (Audubon, NJ/Audubon), a stolen base and a RBI double by senior first baseman Matt Calloway (Blackwood, NJ/Highland Regional), but the Lions got that run back and more with a three-run bottom of the third.

TCNJ’s big inning featured two walks and four singles, including RBI hits from Botti, junior second baseman Andrew Cosgrove and Iacono.

The Raptors countered with a run in the fourth following singles by junior left fielder Mike Morris (Sewell, NJ/Washington Township) and senior second baseman Nick Faragasso (Sewell, NJ/Gloucester Catholic). Senior catcher Nick Turekian (Cherry Hill, NJ/Cherry Hill East) sacrificed and sophomore right fielder Joe Midili (Sewell, NJ/Washington Township) plated the run with a ground out.

The Lions added two more runs in the fifth on RBI singles by pinch-hitter Tom Grohs and senior shortstop Mike Bruschini. TCNJ put the game away with three runs in the bottom of the sixth

Rutgers-Camden sophomore starter Stephen Sooy (Millville, NJ/Millville), 1-2, took the loss, working 2-1/3 innings, allowing six hits, four walks and five earned runs.

TCNJ starter Bob Buskett collected the victory to raise his record to 4-0. The sophomore southpaw worked seven innings of six-hit ball, walking two and striking out six. He allowed two earned runs.

Rutgers-Camden’s attack was paced by junior center fielder Nate Buchter (Blackwood, NJ/Highland Regional), who went 2-for-3 including a seventh-inning double for his 100th career hit.

The week started with a stunning defeat April 20 in a home game against NJAC rival William Paterson University. Junior catcher Ryan Brand hit a two-out grand slam in the top of the ninth inning, capping a six-run frame to rally the Pioneers to an 8-6 victory over the Scarlet Raptors.

William Paterson entered the ninth inning staring at a 6-2 deficit, but the Pioneers opened the frame with back-to-back singles by junior center fielder Rick Pignatello and junior second baseman Wayne Poppe. Pignatello went 4-for-5 with three runs and two stolen bases on the day to spark the Paterson attack from the leadoff spot.

Those two singles chased sophomore reliever John Gladden (Sicklerville, NJ/Winslow Township), who was relieved by sophomore Joe Ambrozy (Haddon Township, NJ/Bishop Eustace Prep). Ambrozy got the first out of the inning on a foul fly to left field, but junior first baseman Ted King followed with an RBI single and was removed for pinch-runner Jason Blanks. Back-to-back walks to junior third baseman Mike Rivera and senior right fielder Pete Zaccheria forced home another run and brought in junior Kevin Engel (Haddon Township, NJ/Haddon Township) to relieve Ambrozy.

Engle notched the second out on a pop up to second base before Brand, who entered the game in the eighth inning as a defensive replacement, turned his first at bat into a game-winning grand slam. It was his first home run of the season.

Rutgers-Camden threatened in the bottom of the ninth inning on two-out singles by Calloway and Buchter. Sophomore Ryan Lobban, the fifth Paterson pitcher, worked out of the jam with a strikeout to end the wild game.

Paterson scored a first-inning run after Pignatello hit a leadoff infield single, stole second and advanced on a ground out. King was hit by a pitch and stole second. Pignatello scored when the throw sailed into center field.

The Raptors got that run back in the bottom of the first following a leadoff single by Jakubowski. He advanced on a wild pitch and scored on a one-out double by Buchter, who went 4-for-5 with one run and three RBIs.

With the score tied at 1-1, Rutgers-Camden opened the third inning with back-to-back walks to senior third baseman Tyler Inkster (Audubon, NJ/Audubon) and Jakubowski. Following a sacrifice by Calloway, Buchter delivered an opposite-field RBI single to left. Faragasso followed with a two-run single to center.

Paterson scored an unearned run on a fifth-inning error, but the Raptors tacked on a pair of runs in the seventh on an error and two hits, including an RBI single by Jakubowski. That gave Rutgers-Camden a 6-2 lead, setting the stage for Paterson’s ninth-inning comeback.

Freshman Dan VandeVrede, the third Paterson pitcher, worked one scoreless inning, allowing one hit and striking out one, to collect his first collegiate victory. He is 1-0. Ambrozy (0-1) took the loss.



23 at East Stroudsburg University Invitational (East Stroudsburg, PA)

Did not compete


Thur. 27- Penn Relays TBA
Sat. 29 (at University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA)
Sat. 29 Lions Invitational (at The College of New Jersey, Ewing, NJ) 10:30 a.m.


Sat. 6 New Jersey Athletic Conference Championships TBA
(at Rowan University, Glassboro, NJ)

The Rutgers-Camden track team was scheduled to run in the East Stroudsburg University Invitational on April 22. The Raptors did not compete after the meet was postponed by rain and moved to Sunday, April 23.



Mon. 17 Franklin & Marshall College Invitational

(at Bent Creek Golf Course, Lancaster, PA)

1. Wesley College, 299; 2. Franklin & Marshall White, 301; 3. Moravian College, 304; 4. Neumann College, 307; 5. Dickinson College, 310; 6. Swarthmore College, 314; 7. York College, 317; 8. Messiah College, 320; 9. Alvernia College, 322; 10. Franklin & Marshall Blue, 324; 11. (tie) Lebanon Valley College and Muhlenberg College, 326; 13. Villa Julie College, 327; 14. Elizabethtown College, 340; 15. Ursinus College, 354; 16. DeSales University, 355. Inc. – Rutgers-Camden (competed as individuals)

Individual Medalist: Brian Bergstol (Moravian), 72

Rutgers-Camden Scores: John Goff 85, Rob Burgess 91

Thur. 20 Wesley College Invitational

(Wild Quail Country Club, Wyoming, DE)

1. Wesley College, 289; 2. Newport News Apprentice, 292; 3. *George Washington University, 294; 4. *Delaware A, 295; 5. New York University, 297; 6. *Delaware B, 302; 7. +Wilmington College, 313; 8. Cabrini College, 314; 9. Alvernia College, 320; 10. Neumann College, 322; 11. Rutgers-Camden, 328; 12. Villa Julie College, 332; 13. Eastern College, 351; 14. Immaculata University, 388. Inc. teams: Richard Stockton College, Wesley B.

Individual Medalist: Tyler Smith (Wesley), 67

Rutgers-Camden Medalists: John Goff 80, Joe Zulli 80

* Division I program

+ Division II program


Mon. 24 Tri-Match vs. Swarthmore, Widener 1:30 p.m.
(Edgemont Country Club, Edgemont, PA)

Fri. 28 RU-Camden Scarlet Raptors Invitational 12 p.m.
(Town & Country Golf Links, Woodstown, NJ)

The Scarlet Raptors had a pair of invitationals on the schedule last week, but they were only able to field a team for one of the outings. A pair of Rutgers-Camden golfers, senior John Goff (Haddon Heights, NJ/Paul VI) and junior Rob Burgess (Sewell, NJ/Gloucester Catholic) competed as individuals at the Franklin & Marshall College Men’s Golf Invitational, held at the Bent Creek Golf Course April 17.

The Raptors followed that event by recording a season-best 328 team score at the Wesley College Golf Spring Invitational April 20.

Due to injuries and academic work, Goff and Burgess were the lone Raptor golfers at the Franklin & Marshall Invitational, which was won by Wesley College. Wesley shot a 299 to finish two strokes ahead of the Franklin & Marshall White team.

Moravian College’s Brian Bergstol was the individual medalist with a 72.

Goff recorded an 85 and Burgess shot a 91 for Rutgers-Camden.

Both golfers also turned in a fine performance at Wesley College’s spring invitational April 20 on the Par 72 Wild Quail Golf and Country Club in Wyoming, Delaware.

Goff and junior Joe Zulli (Bellmawr, NJ/Paul VI) both shot a round of 80 to lead Rutgers-Camden to its best score of the season. The Scarlet Raptors recorded a 328 score in the event which featured 16 teams, including three from Division I schools and another from Division II. Among non-Division I and II schools, the Raptors finished seventh out of 12 teams.

Host Wesley College won the team title with a 289, three strokes ahead of the Apprentice School from Newport News, Virginia. The individual medalist was Wesley College junior Tyler Smith, who shot a 5-under par 67.

Once again, the Scarlet Raptors played without injured junior Matt Tomasic (Berlin, NJ/St. Augustine Prep), who averaged 79.0 to lead the team in the fall. The Raptors, however, shaved four strokes off their previous top score of the spring, a 332 at the Susquehanna Invitational April 6.

Goff, playing on his 22nd birthday, recorded his top round of the spring. His previous best had been an 84 at Widener April 13. Zulli, meanwhile, tied his best round of the spring season, an 80 at Susquehanna.

A pair of other Scarlet Raptors, Burgess and freshman Michael Nauss (Blackwood, NJ/Paul VI), each shot an 84. It was the top round of the spring for Burgess, whose previous best was an 89 at Susquehanna. It was the second-best score of the spring for Nauss, who shot an 82 at Susquehanna.




Sat. 29 Atlantic Collegiate League Sprints .
(Gifford Pinchot State Park, York, PA)

Sat. 7 Mid-Atlantic Collegiate Championships
(Occoquan, VA)

Sat. 13- Dad Vail Regatta
Sun. 14 (Schuylkill River, Philadelphia, PA)

The Rutgers-Camden crew team had the week off from competition. The Scarlet Raptors return to action April 29 for the Atlantic Collegiate League Sprints, which will be held at Gifford Pinchot State Park in York, Penn.

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