NUTLEY – The Nutley High School varsity softball team returns a strong group from last year’s squad that won the state North Jersey Section 2, Group 3 tournament championship and finished with a 24-8 record.
The Lady Raiders lost two players to graduation – pitcher Carly Anderson and second baseman Jenna Saporito.
But the team returns everyone else.
Senior left-hander Emily Holden will be the starting pitcher.
Holden saw time on the mound last year. She had the game-winning, two-out walk-off two-run double in the bottom of the eighth inning to lift the team to a 2-1 win over West Morris in the state sectional final.
Senior Danielle Pomponio returns at catcher. Junior first baseman Lauren Hogan also is a returning player. Junior returning player Sam Echevarria is penciled in at second base. Rounding out the infield are senior shortstop Stefanie Ziemer and senior third baseman Breanna DeMaio, both returning players.
The outfield also is experienced; with senior left fielder Cassie Angelo; senior center fielder Alanis Concepcion; and sophomore right fielder Sydney Kunz.
The Raiders will open the season April 1. The team is guided by Luann Zullo, who has been the Raiders’ head coach since 1999.
April 1, Bloomfield, 4 p.m.
April 4, at Caldwell, 4 p.m.
April 6, at Livingston, 4 p.m.
April 8, Montclair, 4 p.m.
April 9, Nutley Tournament, 10 a.m.
April 11, Cedar Grove, 4 p.m.
April 13, at West Essex, 4 p.m.
April 15, Mount Saint Dominic Academy, 4 p.m.
April 16, Essex County Showcase, vs. Morris Knolls, at Seton Hall University, 7 p.m.
April 18, at Bloomfield, 4 p.m.
April 19, at Lenape Valley, 4 p.m.
April 21, West Morris, 4 p.m.
April 23, Raritan Tournament
April 25, Livingston, 4 p.m.
April 26, Bayonne, 4 p.m.
April 27, at Montclair, 4 p.m.
April 29, at Cedar Grove, 4 p.m.
May 2, West Essex, 4 p.m.
May 4, at Mount Saint Dominic Academy, 4 p.m.
May 11, Hudson Catholic, 4 p.m.
May 17, Belleville, 4 p.m.