GLEN RIDGE, NJ – The Glen Ridge High School softball team posted a successful season this spring.
The Ridgers, under head coach Rachael Hogan, showed dramatic improvement from last year, finishing with a 12-10 record, including reaching the quarterfinals of the NJSIAA North Jersey Section 2, Group 1 state tournament for the first time in five years.
“We improved dramatically since last season,” said Hogan. “With the core of the team returning from last season. we were well prepared for the season. Adding a new pitcher to the rotation and a freshman catcher to the battery, proved to be successful. We spent five days in Florida for Spring Training and that has proven to help with our offense this season. Making it to the (quarterfinals) in the state tournament for the first time in five years, was a huge accomplishment for the squad.”
The following GRHS players earned All-Super Essex Conference-Colonial Division:
- Taylor Townson, junior center fielder
- Elizabeth Komorowski, senior first base
- Elettra Giantomenico, freshman catcher
- Ella Strong, freshman pitcher
- Ava Rollo, junior shortstop
- Hannah O’Connor, junior third base
Townson, a junior, served as the team’s leadoff hitter for the third straight season. “Taylor has performed wonderfully,” said Hogan, noting Townson batted .303 with 23 hits (second on the team), including three doubles, four triples, and one home run.
Townson also led the team with 22 RBI. “As the lead-off batter, that is a huge accomplishment,” said Hogan.
Townson scored 28 times in 76 plate appearances. Townson was equally impressive defensively in center field. “In the field, Taylor made some magnificent catches and saved us a number of times,” said Hogan. Towson recorded 16 putouts.
Komorowski also had an impressive season.
“Lizzy has shown so much improvement since her freshman year,” said Hogan. “She was constantly talking to her teammates, calling out plays and situations.” The first baseman recorded 104 putouts, and batted a whopping .426 with a team-high 26 hits and 14 RBI.
Strong was impressive as a pitcher in her freshman year.
“Adding to the pitching rotation this season, Ella did a fantastic job,” Hogan said. . “Her first recorded varsity win was against Barringer .She has improved so much this season. Her record for the season was 6-4, with huge wins over Payne Tech and Mountain Lakes. She pitched a total of 67 innings, allowing 76 hits, 31 earned runs, walking 48 and striking out 66 for the season. Ella was named as one of the freshmen pitcher standouts on NJ.com this season.”
Rollo, a shortstop, delivered inspiring efforts. Battling through injuries, Rollo batted .296 with 16 hits (five doubles and two triples) in 54 plate appearances. She drew 25 bases on balls and scored 19 times. At shortstop, Rollo had 20 putouts and 32 assists.
“She is so passionate about the game and wants to do whatever she can to make the team successful,” said Hogan of Rollo. “Her personality is one of a kind and I am amazed with her constant enthusiasm and cheerfulness. This year, Ava suffered a few minor injuries, sidelining her for a few games. She was determined to get back and play. She did return and it was her perseverance through this injury that makes her a gifted athlete.”
Giantomenico also was solid behind the plate as a freshman.
“ ‘Lecci’ is one of the most talented, hard-working and tenacious young athletes I have had the pleasure to coach,” Hogan lauded. “Her willingness to be the best, her hustle and determination behind the plate has proven to be successful for her and the team.”
Giantomenico recorded 158 putouts and 27 assists, and threw out 20 baserunners this season. At the plate she recorded 16 hits, including three doubles, one triple, and one home run. She also drove in 16 runs and scored 22 times and led the team with 26 walks. “She has a great eye at the plate,” said Hogan.
At third base, O’Connor recorded 20 putouts with 12 assists and only one error. Offensively, she had 21 hits (third for the team) with four doubles and one triple for a .308 batting average. O’Connor had 12 RBI and scored 20 times.
Glen Ridge will graduate a few seniors, which will be hard to replace, said Hogan. But Hogan is excited for the next season.
“We still have the core of the team returning for next year,” she said.