|VIDEO: Demarest ousts Passaic Valley from softball states in pitching duel|
In a throwback to old-fashioned state tournament softball, Passaic Valley and Demarest staged a pitching duel in the first round of this year's states. And like those games of the past, it took a mistake to break the deadlock.
14th-seeded Demarest scored two runs in the top of the eighth inning and upset Passaic Valley, 2-0. The Norsewomen got the first run on an error, then added an insurance tally on an RBI double by Gabby Garcia.
For seven innings, Hornets' pitcher Kate Kallert matched zeros with Demarest hurler Stefani Antoshak. Neither team had many opportunities to score and few baserunners.
Kallert managed to strand a runner at third base in the opening inning, then pitched out of trouble in the sixth after the first two Demarest hitters reached base.
Offensively, the Hornets struggled to make solid contact against Antoshak, who allowed just two hits. The Norsewomen also played solid defense. Passaic Valley's only real threat came in the bottom of the sixth, but was denied by a key baserunning mistake and a clutch strikeout by Antoshak with the bases loaded.
The game seemed more like the kind of contest often seen before the pitching mound was moved back from 40 feet to 43, a change that took effect in New Jersey in 2010.
While Demarest advances in the North 1, Group III tournament, the Hornets finish their season at 17-7.
For sports video highlights of this state tournament softball game, click play in the box at left.