|VIDEO: Tufaro's clutch hit and catch lift Lenape Valley past Ramsey|
One strike away from the end of her team's softball season, Ally Tufaro played the hero for Lenape Valley.
Tufaro's clutch two-RBI single in the top of the seventh boosted the Patriots into the lead, and she also made a big defensive play in the bottom of the inning to secure the 4-2 sectional semifinal upset over Ramsey. Lenape Valley scored all of its runs in the seventh after being stifled for the rest of the game.
The seventh-seeded Patriots took advantage of three walks and a hit-by-pitch in the decisive inning. Katie Maiello drove in a run to cut the lead to 2-1 before Tufaro delivered her bases-loaded single. Two runs scored as a result of the hit, with a third crossing on the play after an error.
Patriots' pitcher Kaela Romano allowed eight hits, but limited Ramsey to just two runs. She got some defensive help, none more important than Tufaro's sliding catch in the bottom of the seventh that she turned into the game-ending double play.
Holly Cook had an RBI single for Ramsey, the third seed in North Jersey Section 1, Group II. Jess Juhlin kept Lenape Valley at bay for most of the game, but came out after issuing a one-out walk in the seventh. The Rams finish 20-6.
Lenape Valley, now 17-7, meets top seed High Point in the sectional final, scheduled for Friday.
For sports video highlights of this New Jersey state tournament high school girls' softball game, click play in the box at left.