Softball Dominates McNair In First Playoff Round

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The rain wasn’t the only thing blowing out of Verona yesterday afternoon: The Verona High School softball team blew away McNair Academic High School, 7-0, in the first round of the Section 2, Group 2 playoffs.

The tone was set in the top half of the first inning, when VHS pitcher Christina Colon dispatched McNair’s first three batters in order in a blink. By the bottom of that inning, the score was already 4-0 Verona. VHS is the No. 6 seed in S2G2, to No. 11 for McNair.

Freshman Melanie Naeris led the hitting for the Lady Hillbillies, with three hits in four at-bats, including a double so powerful that a few Cougars openly wondered why Verona’s base runners didn’t just keep running. Renata Primmer, a senior who will be playing for Drew University next year, had Verona’s other double on the afternoon, as well as two RBIs. Megan Meehan, another freshman on the team, also sent two runners home. Meanwhile, Naeris’ older sister, Allison, used her one at-bat to efficiently deliver an RBI.

Colon pitched for five innings and totalled up 15 strikeouts, one walk and just one hit. Melanie Naeris finished out the game’s last two innings.

Verona’s next sectional playoff will be Wednesday, May 23, against Caldwell, the No. 3 seed. But before that happens, Verona will face arch-rival Cedar Grove this afternoon in the Essex County Tournament semifinals. That game gets underway at 4:30 p.m. at Seton Hall University’s Ivy Hill Park.

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