Sports

Panther Athlete of the Week: Rianna Marinelli

e7d5e533b15f04bef83f__M2A9561.jpg
Credits: John Kennedy
7bfff86356f020054ae4__M2A9703.jpg
Credits: John Kennedy
f7b02531503258dba197__DM38354.jpg
Credits: John Kennedy
68ce3e5148216fe02981__M2A9560.jpg
Credits: John Kennedy
e7d5e533b15f04bef83f__M2A9561.jpg

CEDAR GROVE, NJ – She was a key part of last year’s State Championship team and hopes to repeat the feat this year.  She leads her team in hits and runs and is a defensive force at centerfield.  Rianna Marinelli is our TAP into Verona/Cedar Grove Panther Athlete of the Week.

“It feels great to have my hard work be recognized,” Marinelli said of her Athlete of the Week nomination.  “I work very hard at softball.   I play during the off season and I workout during the winter.”

Her hard work clearly pays off as she is currently batting .368, leading  her team in hits (21) and tied for the most runs scored (15).  The Panthers are currently 11-9 for the season and just defeated Millburn 4-0 in the first round of the Essex County Tournament on Saturday with Marinelli going 2-for-3.  However, she said the highlight of the season so far was defeating Verona in the “Lace Up for Pediatric Cancer” charity game on April 21.

Sign Up for E-News

“Beating Verona under the lights was a highlight because it was a very neck-in-neck game going into extra innings and we ended up pulling off the win,”she said.  “Plus it was all for a good cause.”

Marinelli acknowledged her team faces challenges this year after losing several key seniors last year.  “We had a lot of spaces and gaps to fill because we lost Erin Stacevicz at short stop, but Kailey Weinstein is there at second now doing a great job,” she noted. “And we had openings at catcher and left field, but everyone has stepped up and is doing what they need to do for the team.”

The Panthers have also been adjusting to a new head coach in Nicole Velardi.  “I love her.  She’s really good and she’s young so we can relate to her,” Marinelli said.  “She works us hard.  She’s played softball her whole life so she knows a lot about the game.”

On the immediate horizon for the Panthers is the Essex County Tournament.  After defeating Millburn, No. 6 Cedar Grove will take on No. 3 Nutley in the quarterfinals.  “A county title would be great to take too and we will see some tough competition like the Mount, West Essex and Nutley,” Marinelli explained.  “If we play hard, we can do well.”

Looking ahead, Marinelli said she feels the pressure of their state championship title.  “A state title is a lot to live up to, but I think going back-to-back is something to strive for and is attainable if we work hard,” she noted.  “My personal challenge is to try and repeat and to keep motivated and keep the team pumped so we can play as well as we did last year.”

Editor's Note: The "Athlete of the Week" is a weekly reoccurring feature story that highlights an individual student-athlete's success. The Cedar Grove High School Athlete of the Week is selected with the assistance of the school's athletic director and coaching staff.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Verona/Cedar Grove

Essex County Sheriff Bomb Disposal Unit Conducts Sweep at Nutley High School

February 16, 2018

NUTLEY, NJ - The Essex County Sheriff's Office confirmed to TAPinto Nutley that the bomb disposal unit was parked in front of Nutley High School Friday afternoon. 

Members of the Essex County Sheriff's Office are working with the Nutley Police Department as the investigation following the Instagram incident continues. The bomb disposal unit conducted a sweep of the ...

Cedar Grove Police Blotter

February 13, 2018

February 5, 2018 – February 11, 2018

On February 6, 2018 officers investigated a report of a burglary to two motor vehicles at an Eileen Drive address. An unknown actor had entered the unlocked vehicles during the overnight hours. Residents are reminded to remove valuable items and lock all vehicles in their driveways.

On February 9, 2018 at 3:03 p.m., Ptl. Dominick Buscio stopped a ...

Verona Superintendent Responds to Safety Concerns After Florida School Shooting

February 16, 2018

It saddens me to write to you in the days following the senseless act that occurred in Parkland, Florida. A tragedy that takes innocent lives from their loving families in a place that is suppose to be a safe haven can have an emotional effect on so many people, and it is natural for children and their parents to be concerned for their own safety.

The Verona Public Schools are the foundation ...

Following Florida Massacre, East Brunswick Schools Add Armed Officers to Security

February 17, 2018

EAST BRUNSWICK, NJ - At a meeting Thursday night, the East Brunswick board of Education unanimously approved a resolution to engage the East Brunswick Police department to place armed police officers at each school building in the district throughout the entire school day.  In a report released by superintendent Victor Valeski yesterday, township officials asserted that the move would ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_8422fcd41e42d96d6d47_blood_drive

Wed, February 21, 3:00 PM

Cedar Grove Rescue Squad, Cedar Grove

Cedar Grove High School Community Blood Drive

Health & Wellness

Carousel_image_c73a532147f618dc6c08_chamber_meeting_flyer_2-18_jpg

Thu, February 22, 6:30 PM

Robert O'Toole Community Center, Cedar Grove

Cedar Grove Chamber of Commerce Meeting and ...

Business & Finance

Mon, February 26, 7:00 PM

Hospital Auditorium, Glen Ridge

Tour of the Birthing Center

Health & Wellness

Cedar Grove High School’s Sport Management Class Joins #TeamZoey in the Fight Against Progeria

February 16, 2018

CEDAR GROVE, NJ- Cedar Grove High School’s Syracuse University Project Advance has decided to donate all proceeds from this year’s Annual Orange Invitational Volleyball Tournament to the Progeria Research Foundation. The Progeria Research Foundation is an organization geared to search for a cure to put an end to the terminal disease of progeria.

Progeria is a very rare disease, yet ...

'What Stays' exposes family secrets and lies

‘What Stays’ exposes family secrets, resentment and lies

By Liz Keill

SUMMIT, NJ – In an original play by Laura Ekstrand and Jason Szamreta, the Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre has provided an enlightening, funny and heart-felt view of family foibles.

Ekstrand has said that the germ of the play came from conversations with the ensemble members of the troupe, based on ...

'American Hero' explores with powerful performances

‘American Hero’ pulses with tension, clashing emotions at George Street

By Liz Keill

NEW BRUNWICK – The issue of social injustice makes its way into “American Hero,” the second play in a trilogy by Christopher Demo-Brown.

Armand Schultz as Rob is to receive a medal of honor for his heroic actions during the Iraq war. Although he lost the use of his legs, he ...