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Kneppel wins three events; Rams are top team

BOONTON _ Butler's Rebecca Kneppel never objected to being labeled "the fast girl." Everyone always noticed Kneppel's speed when she played soccer and basketball. However, there was little else, she said, that made her a consistent asset on the field and court. "I had OK skills," she said. "Nothing notable." So, Kneppel played one year of basketball in high school and dropped it. She took part in soccer as a freshman and sophomore then left it behind, too. The latter is exactly what Kneppel does on the track: Leave everyone behind. Kneppel, a junior, turned in a superb showing at…

Zannelli's three RBIs key for Lakers

MOUNTAIN LAKES _ Nikki Zannelli has a hit in every game but one this season yet Mountain Lakes' junior second baseman considered herself in a slump going into the Lakers' game against Boonton. Zannelli felt something was amiss and that led to her being videotaped by Mountain Lakes coach Alison Preston. "Going into our game on Friday, Nikki said 'I don't know what's wrong. I can't hit,'" Preston recalled. The videotape revealed that Zannelli wasn't tracking the ball. Her head was in but her eyes weren't following the pitch. However, after the Lakers' 7-5 victory over Boonton on Monday, May…

Hornets hang on, gain MCT title

ROXBURY _ Hanover Park pitcher Jessica Miller squeezed the popup in her mitt, exhaled and spiked the ball into the infield dirt. Finally, it was over. Miller's stomach turned many times in the top of the seventh inning when Mount Olive cut into the Hornets' once-substantial lead. Eleven batters took their turns at the plate. Five runs scored but fifth-seeded Hanover Park held on for a 9-7 victory over the sixth-seeded Marauders at Landing Park to garner their first Morris County Tournament title in 39 years. "All of the frustration and excitement just came out," said Miller of the celebratory…

Colonials are MCT champs

MONTVILLE _ Morristown needs to work a little bit on its celebrations. Other than that, everything went just as the Colonials dreamed it would when they made their first appearance in the Morris County Girls Lacrosse Tournament final. Annika Begley scored four goals and Ava Plott had a hat trick in Morristown's 10-6 triumph over Mountain Lakes in the MCT final held at Montville High School on Saturday, May 5. Sarah Chupak scored twice and Callie Sundin had a goal and two assists for the top-seeded Colonials. Faith Reilly fired a hat trick for second-seeded Mountain Lakes, which was seeking…

Miller leads Hornets into MCT final

ROXBURY _ It clearly wasn't Jenna Devens' night and that pained Hanover Park's senior ace Jess Miller. "I'd be terrified to be in this position as a freshman," Miller said of Devens, Parsippany's first-year pitcher who was making her debut in the Morris County Tournament semifinals. "It's a lot. I felt bad. I guess we all have our days." Although it wasn't Devens' day, the MCT semi was certainly one to remember for Miller, who had three hits, including two home runs, and fired a four-hitter to highlight Hanover Park's surprising 21-1 win over top-seeded and defending champion Parsippany on…

Smith, Mt. Olive jar Rams in semis

ROXBURY _ Annalee Smith, perturbed by her lack of hitting, decided, literally and figuratively, to take the gloves off. The phrase means to not hold anything back and that's exactly the approach that Smith, Mount Olive's catcher, decided she had to take with two outs, the score tied and a runner on first base in the bottom of the eighth inning. Smith, admittedly superstitious, gripped her bat with her bare hands and ripped a first-pitch offering down the third-base line to knock in pinch runner Brianna Segnello with the winning run when the sixth-seeded Marauders edged seventh-seeded Randolph 3-2 in…