South Jersey Softball Season Preview

by Marc Narducci | Mar 27, 2024
South Jersey Softball Season Preview
 The South Jersey high school softball season is fast approaching. Here is a look at the key dates for this season:

Opening day: April 1

Playoff cutoff date: May 18

Playoffs begin: May 22 Public Schools), May 23 Non-Public

Public School sectional finals: June 1 at the higher seed

Non-Public School sectional final: June 3 at higher seed

Public state semifinals: June 5 at North 1 and Central

Non-Public state finals: June 6 at Kean University

Public school state finals: June 8 Ivy Hill Park

 

Defending Sectional Champions:

South Jersey Group 1: No. 1 seed Clayton 3, (2) Audubon 2.

South Jersey Group 2: (1) Haddon Heights 1, (2) Cinnaminson 0.

South Jersey Group 3: (5) Shawnee 5, (2) Moorestown 0.

South Jersey Group 4: (3) Kingsway 9, (4) Cherokee 3.

South Jersey NP A: (3) St. John Vianney 3, (4) St. Thomas Aquinas 0.

South Jersey NP B: (1) St. Joseph Hammonton 9, (3) Gloucester Catholic 2.

 

2023 State Champions from South Jersey

Group 2: Haddon Heights

Non-Public B: St. Joseph

In addition, Clayton advanced to the state Group 1 final.  

 

Hail to Haddon Heights

Haddon Heights could possibly have the best team and player in South Jersey. The Garnets have won consecutive state Group 2 titles and in 2022 were the Tournament of Champions champ. That was the final TOC event, which the NJSIAA eliminated after 2022. 

Last year Haddon Heights went 23-6 enroute to winning the Colonial Conference Liberty, and South Jersey and state Group 2 titles. Leading the way was current junior Sophia Bordi, who has already committed to two-time defending NCAA softball champion Oklahoma. 

Bordi pitched four perfect games in her five postseason appearances last year, including in a 3-0 victory over Jefferson in the state Group 2 final. In that game she struck out 16. 

For the season Bordi went 16-3 with a 0.40 ERA and stuck out 274 in 121 1/3 innings (stats courtesy of NJ.com). She was also a major contributor at the plate, batting .333 with 10 home runs and 20 RBI. 

Haddon Heights returns a veteran team and another player to watch is senior outfielder-pitcher Gracie Grante, a Division I recruit who has committed to Central Connecticut State. Grante hit .307 with four home runs and 19 RBI. 

 

Watch Out for St. Joseph’s and Ava Fisher

Last year St. Joseph’s won the state Non-Public B title, led by current senior pitcher-first baseman Ava Fisher. An East Carolina commit, Fisher went 21-6 with a 2.39 ERA. She struck out 267 in 158 innings. At the plate, Fisher batted .410 with 10 home runs and 32 RBI.

If that wasn’t enough, after the season she was named the MVP of the Carpenter Cup for leading the Tri-Cape team to the championship of the 16-team All-Star tournament consisting of teams from New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Delaware. 

 

Game to Watch

On May 8, St. Joseph visits Haddon Heights, where the potential of a Bordi-Fisher matchup will make this one of the more anticipated regular season games in recent memory. 

 

Photo of Sophia Bordi of Haddon Heights / Marc Narducci

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Author: Marc Narducci

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