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Hackettstown Woman Named Among 13 Somerset Patriots National Anthem Audition Winners

BRIDGEWATER TOWNSHIP, NJ (Somerset County) – The Somerset Patriots have announced the winners of their National Anthem Auditions held at Bridgewater Commons on Saturday, March 7.

The event was originally designed to select ten performers, but due to the talented crop of performers, the Somerset Patriots selected 13 finalists this year.

The selected singers are Gina Maria Jones of Hackettstown, Brennan Scott of Denville, Myrna Lloyd of Somerville, Justin Luckenbaugh of Piscataway, Kayla Fiore & Katie Echols of Scotch Plains and Fanwood, Tanisha Khabe of Florence, Grace Amodeo of Dunellen, Susan Lanto of Somerville, Amanda Abbruzze of Hillsborough, Josh Zagare of Bridgewater, and Nicole Anderson of Hillsborough.

This year, two very talented musicians also made the cut with saxophonist Ian Richard G. Dalida of Somerville and guitarist Taylor Daniels of Hillsborough being selected.

Around 100 people auditioned with a minute-and-a-half of the song of their choice before the judges and mall crowd. Singers were judged on vocal talent, stage presence, and their ability to perform before a large crowd.

For the eighth year in a row, the event was a fundraiser and each contestant donated a minimum of $10 to Operation Shoebox New Jersey, an all-volunteer organization dedicated to collecting donated supplies to ship care packages to U.S. troops based overseas.

Magic 98.3 FM and WCTC 1450 AM’s Racquel Williams served as the emcee of the event. The judges were Somerset Patriots Director of Marketing Hal Hansen, long-time National Anthem singer for the team Tess Giardina, and past audition winner Paul Voorhees.

The National Anthem Auditions took place at Center Court on the lower level of the mall.  This was the 17th year the Patriots hosted National Anthem auditions.

“We want to thank all of our participants that tried out this year. We had tremendous performers that made it very difficult for the judges to choose,” said Somerset Patriots Vice President of Public Relations Marc Russinoff. “The 13 finalists should be very proud they were selected among one of the most diverse and difficult groups yet. We can’t wait to give these great performers a chance to perform at the ballpark.” 

The Somerset Patriots will be back in action on Friday, May 1 for Opening Day at TD Bank Ballpark. Single Game Tickets are now on sale for all 72 home games. Stay up to date on all the team news throughout the offseason online; on all of our social media platforms, and on our mobile app. For more information, visit

Jay Edwards

Born and raised in Northwest NJ, Jay has a degree in Communications and has had a life-long interest in local radio and various styles of music. Jay has held numerous jobs over the years such as stunt car driver, bartender, voice-over artist, traffic reporter (award winning), NY Yankee maintenance crewmember and peanut farm worker. His hobbies include mountain climbing, snowmobiling, cooking, performing stand-up comedy and he is an avid squirrel watcher. Jay has been a guest on America’s Morning Headquarters,program on The Weather Channel, and was interviewed by Sam Champion.

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