Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Senior Hurler Seals Victory with 2-Hitter

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Senior Hurler Seals Victory with 2-Hitter

Article excerpt

FRANKLIN LAKES - Katie Duncan never saw the final out being made Saturday. The sight of fellow senior Christine Griffith rushing at her from shortstop was all the indication she needed to start celebrating.

In perhaps the most fitting ending to a Bergen County softball championship, Duncan made the final play to cap a brilliant two-hit performance in the circle, only to be met by the sparkplug Griffith as sixth-seeded Northern Highlands stunned top-seeded Immaculate Heart, 6-2.

It was the first Bergen County title in Highlands softball history coming in the program's first appearance in the final.

"That last inning, all I was hoping to do was throw strikes and let my defense do the work," said the Harvard-bound Duncan, who snared a comebacker and turned before her throw reached first base to be swarmed by her teammates. "Getting the comebacker was a nice reaction play for me. Seeing Christine running at me, I knew [first baseman] Caroline Lovisolo had gotten it for the final out."

"This was all an unknown for us," said Chris Broking, Highlands' second-year coach. "Being introduced before the game and having announcements being made. But to handle it the way they did and not back down showed something about this team."

Griffith showed something, taking the first pitch of the game from IHA left-hander Katie Kudlacik the other way for a leadoff double to right to spark a four-hit, four-run first inning for the Highlanders (24-4).

"I thought Christine did a great job jumping on the first pitch," Broking said.

A walk and a single loaded the bases with none out for Duncan, who promptly sent a soft liner into no-man's land behind second base for a two-run single and a 2-0 Highlands lead.

Lovisolo beat out an infield single with two outs to plate another run and the fourth scored on an error. …

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