MacArthur has no easy outs this year in Nassau softball

MacArthur High School shortstop Jena Cozza pulls a MacArthur High School shortstop Jena Cozza pulls a pitch to the left side of the field in the bottom third inning. (April 24, 2012) Photo Credit: James Escher

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CLASS AA

Like last year, there won't be an easy out in the lineup for MacArthur, the defending Long Island champions. The toughest of all will be UMass-bound shortstop Jena Cozza, a switch-hitter with power. She'll set the table for players like Kristin Daly and Krissy Gay. Ashley Massoni, with her pinpoint command, takes the ball full-time.

East Meadow has the talent to end its two-year county runner-up streak. Its battery returns intact with catcher Madison West and pitcher Kerri Shapiro, who has a deep arsenal. The Jets are also led by centerfielder Marisa San Antonio and slick-fielding senior shortstop Danielle Cutuli, who returns after missing most of last season with an injury. When healthy, Cutuli is one of the top position players in the county.

Massapequa has a pitcher who can mix it up in Renee Vaiano, along with switch-hitting shortstop Danielle Gariglio and line-drive hitting third baseman Rachel Sieber.

Long Beach's Ashley Martin overpowers batters with her fastball and fools them with her curve. She's joined by shortstop Kelsey Larson, a gap hitter, and first baseman Brianna Rivera, a run producer. In Carey, the circle will be shared by the Turato sisters. Ashley is a senior who can locate the ball and Jenna is a sophomore who can throw it by batters.

Pitcher Tonimarie Valeriano looks to build on a solid sophomore season for Mepham.Oceanside will play small ball with leftfielder Kristen Gallub and the McNamara twins, shortstop Claire and centerfielder Megan.

Shortstop Liz Jacobsohn and second baseman Ashley Freedman are at the top of the order for Syosset and Danielle Zurek takes over in the circle. Farmingdale has slap hitting centerfielder Emily Finkel. Baldwin has one of the county's best power hitters in Carly Mertens. She's followed by catcher Liza Ueno and centerfielder Jessica Pulis. Marisa Ciriello and Hicksville, Anna Lin and Plainview JFK and Nicole Imhof and Calhoun will also contend.

 

CLASS A

After a dominant sophomore season, Alannah Basile of Island Trees has added velocity and developed her change-up. The Bulldogs are solid one through nine, led by third baseman Tori Tedeschi and freshman rightfielder Sam Petre, a five-tool player batting leadoff.

Defending county champ Plainedge is solid all around with Dolores Diemicke at first, Kate Finnen at short, Jackie Oleksak at third and Taylor Curran behind the plate.

Freshman pitcher Sarah Cornell returns for Clarke with increased speed and better control. She's joined by speedy Nicole Randazzo and slap hitting catcher Selena Ruiz.

Seaford welcomes back one of the Island's top talents in Michigan-bound Lindsay Montemarano. She's surrounded by a strong infield that includes Courtney Carbone, Toni Lynn Medaglia and Alex Palazzolo.

Bethpage's senior core includes third baseman Cathleen Cassese, outfielder Kayla Fehrenbach and pitcher Kayla Hatki. They're joined by smooth fielding junior shortstop Danielle Nendza.

Wantagh returns 11 seniors, including pitcher Taylor Corwin, who throws a nasty changeup, and power hitters Christine Keifer and Christie Sinacori. Carina Zupa will be in the circle for Glen Cove.

Sophomore pitcher Geena Fornataro takes the ball for New Hyde Park. She's joined by shortstop Lisa Pellegrino, catcher Amanda Turner and first baseman Kristen Hickey. Mineola features one of the Island's talented young aces in freshman Emily Skupp and third baseman Christina Palmenteri.

Division's Taylor Rosenthal has pinpoint control, walking only five batters in 120 innings last season. Her pitches are called by catcher Alexis Alvino.

Floral Park is solid in the infield with senior Angelica Titor at second and sophomore Sam Perri at short. Junior pitcher Sam Maselli will keep South Side in games.

 

CLASS B

Oyster Bay is the favorite with catcher Danielle Agostinello, pitcher Dana Galgano and first baseman Jackie Romeo. Locust Valley is led by third baseman Lauren Sabatino, who anticipates the ball very well defensively and hits for power. A new era begins in Carle Place where Katelyn Davis takes the ball for two-time defending county champions. Also returning are outfielders Taylor Ruscillo and Nicole Grande. East Rockaway, last season's Class C champ, moves up to Class B and returns a senior battery of pitcher Gianna Ciluffo and catcher Jessica Deptulski, along with shortstop Jessica Cerasoli.

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