|VIDEO: Funicelli, Whippany Park knock out top seed Rutherford|
Whippany Park met with some unfamiliar adversity this softball season. But with the state playoffs underway, the Wildcats are playing well and once again appear to be a threat to win a sectional title.
Rallying from an early deficit, ninth-seeded Whippany Park earned a 6-2 win to oust the top seed, Rutherford. Brittany Funicelli was the all-around star for the Wildcats, striking out 10 batters in the circle and delivering a pair of RBI triples at the plate.
Funicelli went 3-for-4 overall on the day. Her first triple, in the second inning, helped erase Rutherford's early 2-0 lead.
Megan Gallagher had an RBI single for Whippany Park, while Rachel Grabowski and Lauren Greenfield had a pair of hits each. The Wildcats came up with 10 hits overall.
Rutherford took the early lead on a sacrifice fly by Natalie Else and a run-scoring single by Katie Walsh. But the Bulldogs left three runners at third base the rest of the game, as Funicelli got the key strikeouts when she needed them.
Whippany Park is now 11-11 on the season, a record well below its recent performances, which include a state title in 2012 and a county championship last year. The Wildcats will meet fourth seed Madison in the North 2, Group I sectional semifinals, a team they lost to twice this season.
Rutherford ends its season at 18-7.
For sports video highlights of this New Jersey state tournament high school girls' softball game, click play in the box at left.