April 9 2014 Volume-VI Issue-7
The first thing fans, players, coaches & parents want to know after the big game is always,
â€?Is this going to be on
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Table of Contents SSN Divisional
Predictions................................................Page 4 Baseball
Divisional Previews..................Pages 6 thru 17
2014 Shore Conference Baseball:
What to Watch For..........................Page 12-13 Boys Lacrosse
Divisional Previews...................Pages 18 thru 20 Basketball All-Star
Review....................................................Page 28 Ocean & Monmouth County
School Directions................................Page 29
With returnees at all eight positions in the field and two starting pitchers back as well, the Crimson Knights will run it back after going 22-6 last year with, essentially, the same team. Wall does lose No. 2 starter Luke Malone, who also helped out at the plate and in the outfield, but the Crimson Knights have enough to overcome one loss while every other team is dealing with many more.
2. JACKSON MEMORIAL
There is no ACC-bound, Red Sox draft pick in the lineup – at least not at this point anyway – but the Jaguars retained a lot of what made them good last year: defense around the diamond and tough outs at the plate. Pitching is a question mark again this year, but it was also a question mark last year, when Jackson went 14-0 in Class A South.
3. RED BANK CATHOLIC
This could very well be the year the Caseys relinquish their top spot in Class A Central to St. John Vianney, but even though the Lancers have more senior talent returning than the Caseys do, there was still a pretty sizable gap between the two teams last year. RBC still has a top player in the middle of the field in Al Molina, whose arm on the mound will be a major factor this year in the division race after he served as the closer last year.
4. CHRISTIAN BROTHERS ACADEMY
Just like Jackson and RBC, CBA lost Division I talent and is still exceedingly talented. The Colts lost four ACC players to graduation and gained one when sophomore Brandon Martorano committed to North Carolina over the offseason. While the sophomore backstop is still developing, the Colts have three fully-developed hitters and Division I recruits in the middle of the order in Will Morgan, Ryan Ramiz and Pete Papcun recruits, and a legitimate ace in sophomore Luca Dalatri, who was arguably CBA’s best pitcher last year as a freshman after ace John McCarren went down with an injury.
5. ST. JOHN VIANNEY
This ranking is a conservative one, as the Lancers have the most individual offensive talent of any team in the conference this year. Wall is a little more spread out with its talent, but SJV has four players who put up AllShore numbers last year in Evan Pietronico, Joe Rotelli, Anthony Santoro and Anthony LaVigne. The pitching could not stay healthy in 2013, and if the Lancers’ fortune changes in the form of a healthy staff, they become a Monmouth County and Shore Conference favorite.
6. Toms River East 7. Toms River North 8. Jackson Liberty 9. Central Regional 10. Toms River South
Teams to Watch: Howell, Freehold Township, Rumson-Fair Haven & Marlboro
Class A North
Class A South
Class B Central
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.
CBA Howell Freehold Twp. Marlboro Manalapan Middletown South Colts Neck Middletown North
Jackson Memorial Toms River East Toms River North Toms River South Brick Memorial Brick Lacey Southern
St. Rose Point Beach Mater Dei Prep Keansburg Henry Hudson Keyport Ranney Asbury Park
Class A Central
Class B North
Class B South
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.
Red Bank Catholic St. John Vianney Rumson-Fair Haven Shore Manasquan Raritan Holmdel Monmouth
Wall Ocean Red Bank Matawan Freehold Neptune Long Branch
1. Rumson-Fair Haven
1. Red Bank Catholic
2. Southern CBA
5. Red Bank
2. Rumson-Fair Haven 4. Shore Regional 5. Wall
6. Red Bank
8. Colts Neck
8. St. John Vianney
10. Colts Neck
9. Freehold Twp.
Jackson Liberty Central Regionl Barnegat Manchester Point Boro Monsignor Donovan Pinelands Lakewood
9. Toms River North
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By Matt Manley – Staff Writer
Teams listed by predicted order of finish
nyone on a Class A South coaching staff will say it as though they rehearsed it over and over again like it was a bunt defense: “Class A South is the the toughest division in the state.” Ocean County’s division of baseball giants has been a gauntlet for some time now and while that was the case for seven of the teams last year, it’s hard to imagine Jackson Memorial understood what all the fuss was about. The Jaguars went 14-0 and although those on the team would insist it wasn’t as easy as it looked – especially in light of two tournament losses to Toms River North and one to Brick Memorial – an unbeaten division mark goes against the notion that the division is anybody’s game every year. While Jackson Memorial enters the season as the favorite again, it is as a tentative favorite. Not only do the Jaguars need to replace a number of players vital to last year’s success, but there are five other teams with rosters that stack up with the Jaguars roster on paper. It is implied every season, but it rings especially true this year: Class A South will be wildly competitive.
BRIAN GALLAGHER, CATCHER, BRICK – Take your pick between Gallagher and Toms River South’s Ryan Shiffer. Gallagher, who also has a good defensive reputation, edged him in OPS and is the senior, so he wins the virtual coin flip.
MATT GUARINO, 1B, JACKSON MEMORIAL – Came a long way from hitting well under .200 as a sophomore: .411, nine doubles, three home runs and 31 RBI.
CHRISTIAN CAMPBELL, 2B/SS, TOMS RIVER SOUTH – A proven table-setter (.430 on-base percentage last year), Campbell is looking at a likely move from second to shortstop for his senior year.
JON MEOLA, SS, TOMS RIVER EAST – A University of Virginia recruit, Meola ripped seven doubles and hit his lone homer of the 2013 season off of future ACC opponent Karl Blum (Duke).
CHARLIE MULÉ, 3B, TOMS RIVER EAST – A hitting machine as a junior, Mulé hit .476 with five doubles while bringing a steady glove to the hot corner.
RUSSELL MESSLER, OF, TOMS RIVER SOUTH – The tools are impressive and the numbers even more so. The Rutgers recruit also showed a much-improved handle on the strike zone last year (.606 on-base percentage), knowing when to be patient and when to pounce.
KYLE CALA, CF, BRICK MEMORIAL – If Messler was the best outfielder in the division, Cala was right with him. The senior was a doubles machine during the state tournament, ripping one in three straight Central Jersey Group IV games.
HOW MANY TEAMS HAVE A REALISTIC CHANCE AT WINNING THE DIVISION?
The answer appears to be as many as six: Jackson, the three Toms Rivers and the two Bricks. Regardless of the order in which you put the teams, there is a good case to be made for the sixth team in the bunch as far as a division title goes. Every team has talent and every team has an area of concern and that’s what makes the A South race the most interesting Shore Conference division race heading into the season. It would not be a surprise to see a division winner with four or five losses and it would be a little surprising if one of the six fails to make the SCT. WHICH OUTFIELDER HAS THE BETTER SENIOR SEASON: RUSSELL MESSLER OR KYLE CALA?
NICK DABRIO, OF, JACKSON MEMORIAL – A Seton Hall recruit, Dabrio had only one at-bat last year due to a back injury, but is entering this season 100 percent healthy.
While Messler has the edge in each of the last two years, Cala is a four-year starter who is poised to break several Brick Memorial career records this season. While milestones are a nice résumé builder for a Player of the Year candidacy, it comes down to production and performance, and in that case, it could still go either way. Both teams will be relying heavily on their respective slugging outfielder, so any team success will be telling as well.
WHICH GROUP WILL MAKE A BIGGER IMPACT: THE JACKSON MEMORIAL PITCHING STAFF OR THE NEW TOMS RIVER NORTH POSITION PLAYERS?
CONNOR ROONEY, SS/P, LACEY – Could easily be listed with the pitchers as well, but Rooney brings enough to the table offensively and defensively to put him with the hitters. STEVE SLAGMOLEN, RHP, TOMS RIVER NORTH – Showed his mental toughness by striking out Matt Thaiss in the bottom of the seventh of the Ocean County Tournament final, the defining moment in a strong season for Slagmolen.
ANTHONY DEBLASIO, RHP, TOMS RIVER EAST – DeBlasio helped bring some stability to the rotation behind Paul Schifilliti and is ready to take over as the No. 1 this year.
ANTHONY ASSANTE, RHP, BRICK MEMORIAL – Gave the Mustangs a chance to win every time out during the postseason and took a tough no-decision in the sectional final against Hunterdon Central after 4 1/3 innings.
BRETT HYERS, RHP, TOMS RIVER NORTH – Some arm trouble cut his season short, but Hyers was impressive in his sophomore debut, posting a 17to-4 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 20 innings. TYLER MELLOT, RHP, TOMS RIVER SOUTH – Toms River South continues to churn out quality arms of all shapes and sizes, and Mellot is another who gets a lot behind his fastball despite a slight frame. His 1.44 ERA in 24 innings suggests something is working.
Breakout Players to Watch JOEY ROSE, SS/P, TOMS RIVER NORTH – Lots of power potential here. Rose has a chance to be a very good one for the Mariners.
RYAN TACAKS, RHP, JACKSON MEMORIAL – Although the Jaguars have to replace a lot of pitching, they were not particularly strong on the mound relative to the rest of the team. Tacaks has the repertoire to change that.
NICK MOGLIA, 1B/RHP, BRICK – With a year to grow into his 6’5” frame, Moglia should be sharper on the hill this year while also providing some help at first base.
BRIAN MARKOSKI, 1B, BRICK MEMORIAL – Exhibited great command of the strike zone as a freshman (17 walks) and a season of at-bats should only help.
Jackson Memorial first baseman Matt Guarino
BRANDON JANOFSKY, SS, JACKSON MEMORIAL – The only established starter on this list, Janofsky has a chance to be a very good player for the Jaguars. He will be looking to build on a .250 season at the plate, although his defense at second base was already stellar.
Both units have been impressive in the preseason thus far, so the early indication is that both will be positives for their teams this year. While pitching normally wins the day, Jackson Memorial has not asked its pitchers to be stars in recent years because the Jaguars have had such great defenses behind them and potent offenses to get back any runs that they give up. They pound the bottom of the strike one and let the defense work, which will be the formula again this year. Toms River North, meanwhile, will need to find some offense while also developing a defense that can back up a talented but still somewhat unproven pitching staff. WILL CARMEN SCLAFANI BRING HIS WINNING TOUCH TO THE BRICK BASEBALL TEAM AS WELL?
Anyone who watched Sclafani on a football field saw an example of a winning player, and while it wasn’t so obvious on the baseball field, that same sense of the moment was there. Sclafani brought stability to the shortstop position for the Mariners and also came up with a number of big hits out of the No. 9 spot in the order, racking up 21 RBI to lead the team. Not only does he bring the same element to Brick’s team, but his departure is also a hit to a division rival, although the Mariners will use it as an opportunity to play some talented youngsters. If Brick can pitch better than it did last year and keep games close, Sclafani will likely find himself winning some games for the Dragons. IS TOMS RIVER EAST PRIMED FOR A RETURN TO CHAMPIONSHIP FORM?
As with any other team in the division, Toms River East has its share of unknown quantities heading into the year, namely at catcher and on the right side of the field. But with three senior starting pitchers coming off solid seasons and a mix of power, contact and athleticism on the left side of the diamond, the Raiders have the ingredients to get back to the top of the division if some of the unknowns become positives. With a senior-heavy team and one of the better juniors in the state in shortstop Jon Meola, Toms River East should propel itself out of the middle of the pack and into a late-season race.
Indoor Baseball and Softball Coming To The Shore B
aseball and fastpitch softball training is about to get a huge upgrade on the Jersey Shore. A new state of the art 32,250 square foot indoor facility is being built right here at the Jersey Shore and will be located 1 mile off 195 in Howell, NJ.
Baseball U a travel organization that has helped over 240 players earn a college education through scholarships the past 8 years will be behind this project. Not only have they helped players move on to college they also have had 57 alumni drafted by Major League Baseball including 4 first round selections.
The facility will be called U Athletic Performance and will bring one stop shopping to the serious athlete. U Athletic Performance will also offer a top flight strength, speed and agility program. An athlete will be able to come in work on their sports specific skills and also then attend a private or group session of strength, speed and agility to help turn them into a complete athlete.
The facility will have a full turf area that will be 175â€™ x 130â€™. This area will have 40â€™ ceilings at its peak allowing full infield workouts for all levels of competition and be fully netted in essence making it a giant batting cage. There are batting cages all around the state but very limited venues that will allow a team to not only have full workouts but hit live inside and allow fielders to make plays as if they were outside.
Every year northeast colleges head south on their springs trips and compete against teams that have been outside for weeks seeing live pitching and fielding balls off actual live at bats. The U Athletic Performance venue will allow teams to be game ready. We need not look any further than this past winter and now spring to see just how important this venue can be for the college, high school and youth players looking for an advantage over others.
Monmouth University Baseball and Brookdale Community College will be using the facility as they see the advantage of not only being able to see live pitching and have full field workouts but also fielding on turf instead of hardwood floors. The turf gives the players a true bounce and more realistic approach to their practices.
With easy access from the NJ Turnpike, Garden State Parkway, Route 18 and Interstate 195 there are 48 high schools all within 29 miles of U Athletic Performance. Teams of all levels are always looking for a competitive advantage and we feel that this is just the answer for and affordable option.
Teams will be able to come in and use the facility and train with their staff or U Athletic Performance will be able to provide instruction to their team with our professional staff of current and former MLB players, college as well as MLB organizational coaches. Baseball U has traveled to some of the top professional as well as college venues in the country and taken ideas from each facility along the way. The technology that they are going to be able to provide will be second to none. Many places offer video and they plan on doing that as well but wanted to take it to the next level. An example would be imagining a player at a private lesson. An instructor can make adjustments or show them the video at a later time. They will be able to have a batter take a swing or throw a pitch and give them instant feedback with a high tech system that will show them right then and there prior to their next swing or pitch on a big screen hi-def TV. Not only will they be able to tell them what they are doing but they can see what they are doing giving them proper adjustments instantly.
U Athletic Performance wants to be a big part of the community and wants the little leagues to be able to hold their tryouts at the facility. The numbers are dropping with youth baseball and with every good high school program it starts at the younger levels. If you go to a Toms River South, North or East high school baseball game you will find that they are highly attended by little leagues and it is no mistake year after year that the Toms River programs are competitive. It starts at the younger levels and those little league age players in Toms River look at their high school programs as minor league baseball. It is the belief of U Athletic Performance to get the little leagues in the facility and bring them a great experience and in doing so all the high schools will benefit in the long run. U Athletic Performance wants to be able to provide a great experience to all not matter what their ability including Challenger Baseball providing opportunities for the handicap as well. For baseball to remain Americas game U Athletic Performance believes that it starts with the youth at all levels. Winter leagues and tournaments will be a big part of U Athletic Performance as well. Teams entering these events will be able to have pregame batting practice as well as play games to stay sharp any time of the year.
One thing is for sure and that is that Baseball and Fastpitch softball will be given an opportunity that much of the state will not have come this fall of 2014. The U Athletic Performance website will be up and running soon but those interested in finding out more about the facility can visit www.BaseballU.net for more information.
By Matt Manley – Staff Writer
Teams listed by predicted order of finish
t’s easy to forget now after only one team in the division made any noise in the postseason, but the Class B North race was actually the tightest one in the Shore Conference last year. Wall won the division by a game over Matawan and lost games to Freehold and Neptune during the season. Wall went on to beat CBA to advance to the Monmouth County Tournament championship game and also reached the NJSIAA Central Jersey Group III final, which masked the fact that the Knights had to hold their breath while trying to lock up the division. This year should not be so close. Wall returns all but one starter from last year’s 22-6 team while the rest of the division copes with the usual amount of turnover. St. Rose looks like a safe pick to win Class B Central, but if one had to guarantee a division winner out of the six Shore Conference divisions, Wall in B North might be the way to go. That should actually make for a more interesting division rather than a less interesting one because every game will be a chance to pull an upset for
Wall’s opponent, and in baseball, as Neptune proved in no-hitting Wall last year, you just never really know. Division Lineup
DAN WONDRACK, CATCHER, WALL – The Shore is becoming known for its catching talent and Wondrack leads the Class of 2015.
JACK GIFFORD, 1B, WALL – Last season was a bit of a down year for Gifford, who was a revelation as a sophomore in 2012. Expect a return to form in the middle of Wall’s lineup.
COREY MARTIN, SS/2B, RED BANK – Won a starting job at second base last year and hit .415. Martin will make the move to shortstop, which means his defense will be more of a priority than any offensive improvement.
CONNOR MULLAN, SS, LONG BRANCH – Displayed power during his junior year to the tune of nine extra-base hits, including 2 homers.
JIMMY MCGRORRY, 3B, OCEAN – Most of Ocean’s top hitters last year were seniors, but McGrorry did knock in 20 runs while hitting .280 as a junior.
TIM WILLEY, OF, WALL – With a number of big hits to his credit, Willey was third on the team in on-base and slugging percentage, trailing only Wondrack and Nick Martinez in each category.
NICK MARTINEZ, CF, WALL – One of the more underrated players at the Shore, Martinez ran a .480 on-base percentage
with eight doubles and 24 runs scored.
JACOB NAPPI, OF, RED BANK – Nappi could take a spot in the lineup or the rotation, and after hitting over .400 last season and with a career hit total approaching 100, he gets the nod in the outfield.
ZACH GODFREY, C, OCEAN – Led all Spartans returnees in average (.313) and doubles (six) and will also provide experience behind the plate.
TYLER SWIGGART, RHP, WALL – The George Washington recruit posted an ERA and WHIP that were each below 1.00 last season thanks to his control (19 walks in 67 2/3 innings) and a three-quarter delivery that is difficult for hitters to handle.
RYAN LILLIE, LHP, OCEAN – A breakout pitcher last season, Lillie posted a 2.29 ERA and struck out 34 in 49 innings as a junior.
STEVE COLTRAIN, RHP, WALL – One of the best No. 3 starters in the Shore (1.98 ERA with a 3-0 record) last year, Coltrain will move into the No. 2 spot behind Swiggart.
A.J. FORGIONE, RHP, RED BANK – Enters the season as the No. 2 in the rotation behind Nappi, but last year’s numbers would put him in the conversation as one of the best in B North.
MIKE CREAMER, RHP, MATAWAN – Probably more of a threat at the plate going into the year, but Creamer has to be somewhere on this list and his ability on the mound gets him a spot with the pitchers.
VOLUME-VI even some quality innings on the mound.
BOBBY KNEE, 3B/RHP, NEPTUNE – One of a handful of Neptune seniors that might get more recognition with more wins. With enough of those players earning their due, the wins could take care of themselves.
BOBBY PATTERSON, RHP, WALL – Last year’s Wall pitching rotation was a hard one to crack and after waiting his turn, Patterson will be champing at the bit to deliver.
NICK SANTUCCIO, RHP, MATAWAN – After a junior season as a reliable starter, Santuccio is ready to take on more innings and the Huskies may need that to happen in order to challenge for the division title again.
WILL A WHOLE TEAM OF RETURNING STARTERS BENEFIT FROM LAST YEAR’S BIGGAME EXPERIENCE?
Wall senior Tyler Swiggart
Breakout Players to Watch
DANTE CUZZOLINO, RHP/INF, FREEHOLD – A key varsity contributor as a freshman and sophomore, Cuzzolino will pick up plenty of innings for the Colonials this year.
SAM MAXWELL, OF/RHP, OCEAN – The Spartans are looking for new sources of offense and Maxwell has shown signs that he can not only give them good at-bats, but possibly
Based on returning players, Wall should be the Shore’s best team this year, but in order to finish off a championship of some kind, the Crimson Knights will have to get over the hump in a championship game. The only way to do that is to get to the championship game, and getting back is never as simple as it seems. Still, a team as solid as Wall is at every position with experience in tight elimination games fits the profile of a club ready to take the next step. WHICH TEAM POSES THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE FOR THE HEAVILY FAVORED CRIMSON KNIGHTS?
Ocean is the safe answer based on the Spartans’ recent history as a team that competes for division titles every year, and also on the fact that they have a quality No. 1 starter in Ryan Lillie who is capable of beating Wall. Red Bank, however, might be equally dangerous with two quality arms at the top of the rotation, including another standout left-hander
in Jacob Nappi. Wall is the heavy favorite and any losses the Crimson Knights suffer will probably have more to do with the pitching matchup on that particular day, but enough of those days would make this race surprisingly interesting. CAN FREEHOLD RELOAD WITH REPLACEMENTS FOR TWO ALL-SHORE LEVEL PITCHERS AND A CENTER FIELDER?
Freehold’s advantage in replace Mike Bolton, Jake Yanez and Jason Lundy is that a lot of the players that complemented those three last year are back and will just have to do their jobs a little better to get back to where they were. The trouble, in all likelihood, will be finding two pitchers as reliable as Yanez and Bolton. With a lot of options, however, Freehold remains a dark-horse in the division if a few things work out. DOES MATAWAN HAVE ENOUGH REMAINING TO GET BACK INTO THE TOP HALF OF THE DIVISION?
A healthy Mike Creamer will be a good start for Matawan in trying to replace one of its better senior classes in the last decade. Creamer will be the team’s top hitter, defender and pitcher if all goes well, but the Huskies will also need some of their part-time players to handle their increased roles. Red Bank and Ocean are not so far ahead that Matawan can’t compete if most of the previous scenario comes to pass. ARE EITHER NEPTUNE OR LONG BRANCH LEGITIMATE SLEEPERS IN THE DIVISION?
Long Branch returns a standout in Connor Mullan but little else to the starting lineup, which makes any ideas of a surprise season hard to envision. The Scarlet Fliers, on the other hand, proved last year that they can hang with a top team when they no-hit Wall with two pitchers in a 6-2 win. Replacing catcher Jason Richard will be a tall order, but a lot of the junior talent from last year is back as senior talent in 2014, which could make for an interesting season at Neptune.
By Matt Manley – Staff Writer
Teams listed by predicted order of finish
t’s not often that a baseball team is successful thanks in large part to one player, but there is one instance in which that’s the case. It’s not a revelation that the pitcher has the most control over the outcome of a game, but the fact that he does not pitch every game limits his impact over the course of the season. High school baseball, however, is a sport that allows one player to dominate a season because not only are many pitchers good hitters, but they also have a chance to pitch in about a third of their team’s games.
What does this have to do with anything? The top projected teams in Class B South are built on pitching and in one case, a pitcher. The regular season will be a measure of pitching depth vs. one dominant starter, unless of course the team with the ace also has some secret weapons on the mound. There may be some divisions that have an edge in quantity of pitching talent, but no Shore Conference division has the top-level arms that can be found in Class B South. Division Lineup
NIK FRAIM, CATCHER, BARNEGAT – Has shown a good feel for hitting since he won the starting job as a freshman and hit .387 with power (nine doubles and a homer) as a sophomore last year. Fraim handled a hard-throwing, ACC left-hander (Mike McCoy) as a freshman and now is helping Barnegat’s next wave of pitchers.
TERRENCE BERKELEY, 1B/C, POINT BORO – Might play more at catcher, but the bat will play regardless of position. JAMES SOFIELD, 2B/SS, JACKSON LIBERTY – With a lot of talent from last year graduated, Sofield will shoulder more of the load, which includes a move to shortstop. JAISON JEREZ, SS, LAKEWOOD – A bright spot in an otherwise rough season, Jerez was an all-division selection by the coaches.
RUSS PETRANTO, 3B, MONSIGNOR DONOVAN – Injury derailed a breakout sophomore season, but Petranto still hit .367 with three doubles. JOE LETINSKI, OF, BARNEGAT – While the Bengals young pitching is the draw of the roster, the outfield quietly had a good season last year, led by Letinski (.286, four doubles, two triples)
CHRISTIAN BEARDON, OF, CENTRAL – Showed some pop last season with a homer and a triple while also knocking in 11 runs. RYAN ULRICH, OF, BARNEGAT – Another good athlete in Barnegat’s outfield, Ulrich scored 12 runs and racked up five doubles last year and profiles well at the top of the order.
MARQUIS DRUMRIGHT, 1B, CENTRAL – Central had some good bats coming off the bench last year and Drumright was very good in
the pinch-hitting role, as well as in the occasional start.
big part of any success the team has, and if they go as he goes, the Golden Eagles will go far.
CAN JACKSON LIBERTY OVERCOME SOME KEY LOSSES TO GRADUATION AND TAKE ANOTHER STEP TOWARD A CHAMPIONSHIP?
ANDREW DIPIAZZA, RHP, CENTRAL – One of the top pitchers in the state, the Alabama recruit will try to top his junior season, when he went 9-0 with a 0.85 ERA and 106 strikeouts in 66 innings.
Technically, Jackson Liberty has been a championship team based on its success in Class B South, but the Lions have also made two deep runs in the Shore Conference Tournament under coach Jim Rankin. Of course, Jackson Liberty would like to finish off an SCT title, but the Lions would also like to bottle that SCT mojo and unleash it in the Group III playoffs. Although there are some questions offensively, the Lions return two proven pitchers and have a deep stable of arms behind them. Regardless of the offense, that kind of pitching makes Jackson Liberty a dangerous team in any tournament.
DAN SERREINO, RHP, JACKSON LIBERTY – Seton Hall recruit was a biggame pitcher for the Lions, beating Red Bank Catholic and CBA in the Shore Conference Tournament.
DEVIN TOMEI, RHP, MANCHESTER – With a tall, athletic frame and a good fastball, Tomei projects to build on a junior season in which he was tough to hit, but struggled at times to find the zone. JASON GROOME, LHP, BARNEGAT – Coming off an impressive freshman season, Groome should continue to improve as he continues to grow after already demonstrating at a young age that he knows how to pitch.
MIKE DUNHAM, RHP, POINT BORO – Emerged as Point Boro’s top starter as a junior last year and has the tools to improve on a solid year.
Jackson Liberty's Dan Serreino
Breakout Players to Watch
JAKE DOMINGUEZ, RHP, CENTRAL – Fourteen outs are not a whole lot in one season’s work, but of the 14 batters Dominguez retired last season, 10 of them went down on strikes.
COLLEN O’CONNOR, OF, BARNEGAT – Another player with a small sample of success, this sophomore went 7-for-15 with a double last season, which should earn him some time this year. JONATHAN MEANEY, INF/P, MANCHESTER – The Hawks will be looking for some offense this year and Meaney might be able to help as a sophomore who can play the infield spots and also throw some innings. MITCH MERRILL, SS, PINELANDS – No one wants to endure a sophomore slump, but Merrill would have gladly taken that instead of a season lost to injury. The junior should pick up right where he left off at the end of his impressive freshman season.
HOWARD TAYLOR, UTIL, JACKSON LIBERTY – The Lions can use him at a few different positions, including on the mound. He worked a .414 on-base percentage and ran a tidy 11-to-2 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 15 innings.
WHAT WILL ANDREW DIPIAZZA DO FOR AN ENCORE?
High school baseball is unique because unlike a high school football or basketball star who has made his college decision, a good baseball prospect still has a chance to play himself into a draft pick. DiPiazza will likely be on the draft radar, and if that’s not enough motivation, Central has a chance to do some real damage this season after reaching four straight sectional semifinals. DiPiazza will be a
CAN DEVIN TOMEI DEVELOP INTO A TOP STARTING PITCHER AND CARRY THE MANCHESTER STAFF?
The tools are all there for Tomei, a Campbell recruit who will look to attack the strike zone with this season after an up and down junior year. The Hawks have some options behind their ace, but if Manchester is to contend for the division and make a postseason run, it will be with Tomei as its go-to pitcher. BARNEGAT IS THE SLEEPER, BUT CAN THE BENGALS REALLY WIN THE DIVISION?
The Bengals opened some eyes last year with an early-season win over Jackson Liberty, which should be proof enough that Barnegat has what it takes to contend. Last year, they were probably a year away from doing so on a game-to-game basis, but now that some of their key players have grown some, the Bengals will have a chance to not only beat the top teams in the division, but also hang with them in the division race. With three quality pitchers in the fold, Barnegat should be taken seriously as threat in Class B South. DOES MONSIGNOR DONOVAN STAND A CHANCE AFTER GRADUATING ITS WHOLE PITCHING STAFF AND MOST OF ITS LINEUP? As rare as it is to see a team like Wall basically bring its whole team back, it’s almost as rare when a team like Monsignor Donovan returns only one regular starter, either on the mound or in the field. Russ Petranto showed he can produce at the varsity level last year, but he is the only proven commodity coming back for the Griffins this year. Moreover, none of the Griffins starting pitchers are back, so any notion that Monsignor Donovan will contend this year is based on the premise that experience means little.
By Scott Stump – Managing Editor ith the 2014 Shore Conference baseball season underway, there are plenty of storylines to keep an eye on before the action really starts to heat up when the conference and state tournaments get underway in May.
The Shore is hoping to make a stronger imprint in the postseason this spring after winning only one sectional championship last season and not having a team reach an NJSIAA Group final for the first time since 2007. The lone returning sectional champion from last season is defending NJSIAA Central Jersey Group II winner Monmouth Regional. The Falcons are out to show that the wins will keep coming under new coach Paul Crivello after the retirement of Hall of Fame coach Ted Jarmusz and the graduation of a strong senior class. So far, senior pitcher Jon Bonczyk has helped them hold their own in Class A Central.
Here are other things to watch as the season progresses. Andrew DiPiazza’s journey toward the MLB Draft
The 6-foot-6 senior right-hander is committed to the University of Alabama and is coming off a junior season in which he earned All Shore Media Pitcher of the Year honors by going a perfect 9-0 with a 0.85 ERA and 106 strikeouts in 66 innings. His brilliance last year has put him squarely on the Major League Baseball Radar, as there were scouts from the Mets, Reds and others in attendance when he earned a no decision in his first start this season. A top 10 pitcher in the state, his size and frame means he projects to eventually throw in the mid90s. He has a chance to be selected in the top 10 rounds of this June’s Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft, which
This year’s Lancers feature one of the fiercest middle orders in the Shore Conference and a plethora of scholarship players. Senior catcher Anthony Santoro, a four-year varsity player, is headed to Rutgers, while senior Evan outfielder Pietronico and senior pitcher Justin Chin have both signed with New Jersey Institute of Technology. Senior first baseman Joe Rotelli, who forms the slugging heart of the lineup w i t h Santoro,
could mainly depend on his signability as far as what teams will offer him to break his commitment to Alabama. He has the potential to be Central’s best pitcher since former big leaguer Al Leiter, a Shore Conference legend.
Russell Messler’s drive to become one of the best in Toms River South history
One of the state’s top programs and the home of several storied Shore Conference talents, Toms River South is a difficult place to make a dent in history. However, Messler is on pace to put up one of the best careers of any Shore Conference outfielder in the last 20 years. The Rutgers recruit could become the rare Shore player to bat .500 or better in three varsity seasons, and do it in one of the most competitive divisions in that state, for that matter.
A two-time, first-team AllShore selection, Messler hit .500 with a .606 on-base percentage and a .932 slugging percentage as a junior. He flashed a power bat out of the leadoff spot, slugging 7 doubles, 6 homers and 2 triples while also scoring 39 and driving in 20. With one more big season, he could put himself in the statistical pantheon for the Indians and cement himself as one of the Shore’s most productive players in the last decade. He already launched his first homer in Toms River South’s second game this season while continuing to also be a disruptive force on the basepaths.
St. John Vianney’s push for one of its best seasons ever
TRS’s Russell Messler
Pietronico and senior third baseman Anthony LaVigne, has committed to Division II power Carson Newman. Senior pitcher/shortstop Chris Morris has signed with Seton Hall, giving the Lancers the most talented roster they have had since the Kyle MacLachlan-led team that reached the NJSIAA Non-Public South A final in 2008.
While the Lancers have captured multiple division titles in recent years, they are looking to get over the hump in the tournaments to bring home some postseason titles. They got off to a 3-0 start this spring and beat nemesis Red Bank Catholic for the first time in four years along the way, which is a good sign. Pietronico and Rotelli already homered by the third game, and the offense was not held under six runs through the first three games. With Chin, Morris and Dan
tournament titles after coming close to a pair of them last season. Schirmacher leading the rotation, if this team stays healthy, it has a chance to put up one of the best seasons in quite a while for the Lancers.
St. Rose looks to break through
The rise of the son
Toms River East junior shortstop Jon Meola flashed his potential last season for the Raiders in earning All Shore Media third-team AllShore honors, and he appears poised for a breakout year for a
Toms River North looks to reload
team looking to reclaim its position among the Shore’s elite.
Meola has already committed to the University of Virginia, which has been ranked in the top two in the country all season by Baseball America. Meola is the son of former U.S. men’s national soccer team star goalie Tony Meola but has begun to carve his own identity thanks to his burgeoning baseball career. Already one of the top fielding shortstops as a sophomore, he looks to be a linchpin in the Raiders’ lineup offensively this spring to put them in the thick of the Class A South race after being out of the picture for the last few years.
The rise of young talent at CBA
While DiPiazza rightfully receives plenty of praise as the Shore Conference’s dominant pitcher, Christian Brothers Academy sophomore Luca Dalatri appears to be in line to be the next lockdown pitcher in the area to catch the eye of Major League Baseball scouts. Dalatri played a significant role on the Colts as a freshman with a 1.25 ERA and 40 strikeouts in 39 1/3 innings. At 6-foot-5 with a fastball that already touches 90 miles per hour, he has the type of frame that big-league scouts love. He already has a one-hitter to his credit against defending Class A North public champion Middletown South this season and gives CBA an ace who should be a major factor in the tournaments.
He is not the only burgeoning star on CBA, as sophomore catcher Brandon Martorano has already committed to ACC power North Carolina. Martorano was part of the 15U National Team this summer that won the COPABE Pan-American Championships in Colombia. He saw some time as a freshman but has stepped up to a much bigger role this season as a starter. He and Dalatri should be a formidable battery that will be as good as any in the state for the Class of 2016. Add those two to a Colts team that has an All-Division I outfield in Will Morgan (Old Dominion); Ryan Ramiz (Seton Hall) and Pete Papcun (Monmouth) and you have a squad talented enough to make a run at multiple tournament titles.
With the retirement of 20-year head coach Ted Schelmay and the graduation of stars like the pitching tandem of Karl Blum (Duke) and Ron Marinaccio (Delaware) from the team that finished No. 1 in the Shore last year, it appeared that Toms River North would have a lot of heavy lifting to get back in the mix as a title contender. However, so far under new coach Andy Pagano, it looks like the departure of their standouts has only paved the way for another wave of young talent to make its presence felt.
The Mariners have already handed defending Class A South champion Jackson Memorial its first divisional loss since 2012, and newcomers like juniors Jeff Venditto and Mike Tiplady have come out on fire in their first season as varsity starters. Venditto and Tiplady went a combined 14for-18 in the first week of the season to get Toms River North off to an unbeaten start, and sophomore Justin Rose has also been a key contributor. With experienced pitchers Steve Slagmolen and Brett Hyers leading the way on the mound, Toms River North doesn’t appear to be going anywhere when it comes to defending its titles in the Ocean County and Shore Conference Tournaments from a year ago.
The Purple Roses are once again the heavy favorite to win the Class B Central title, so they are back to the annual question of whether they can do damage in the tournaments once they get out of divisional play. Second baseman Conor Gammond is one of the best in the Shore Conference at his position after hitting .471 as a junior. Seniors Jimmy Gowen and Parker Haggerty head up a rotation that graduated Wagner recruit Brad Currao, who was their big-game pitcher last year. That role now belongs to Gowen, who went 4-0 last season and will be counted on to throw many of the big nondivisional and tournament games.
Healthy seasons for several standouts
Several players crucial to their success who missed part or all of last season have returned to hopefully improve their team’s fortunes this season. Jackson Memorial pitcher/outfielder Nick Dabrio is back after sitting out last year with a back injury, and he has already emerged as a top two-way threat for the defending Class A South champions. Shore Regional senior Matt Cosentino also missed most of last season with an injury, and the George Washington University recruit now anchors the middle of the Blue Devils’ lineup while also bolstering their pitching staff. Rumson-Fair Haven senior righty Shane McCarthy, a Seton Hall recruit, is back to head up the rotation after missing all of last season following elbow surgery and combines with Old Dominion recruit Morgan Maguire to give the Bulldogs a solid 1-2 punch on the mound. Pinelands junior shortstop Mitch Merrill, who started as a freshman and missed all of last season with an injury, has given an immediate boost to the Wildcats, who upset defending Class B South champion Jackson Liberty in the season opener on the heels of a fourwin season.
Wall is out to finish the job
The preseason No. 1 team in the Shore Sports Network Top 10, the Crimson Knights have returned nearly their entire starting lineup from a 22-win team that reached the championship games of the Monmouth County and Central Jersey Group III Tournaments last season.
With a rotation led by George Washington recruit Tyler Swiggart and a deep lineup headed up by Nick Martinez, Dan Wondrack, Chris Barcas and Tim Willey, the Crimson Knights are the heavy favorite to repeat as Class B North champs and make a serious run at multiple
Wall catcher Dan Wondrack
By Matt Manley – Staff Writer
Teams listed by predicted order of finish
here is no debating that Red Bank Catholic has turned itself into a premier Shore Conference baseball program and the Caseys’ dominance within their division is evidence of that. Still, RBC has its share of demons like everyone else and the bitter endings that have befallen them in recent years despite Shore Conference Tournament and Monmouth County titles have haunted them some.
RBC can still take solace in the fact that the division is again theirs to lose after going 14-0 in A Central last year. The Caseys should not get too comfortable, however, because there are actually teams good enough to take their title. St. John Vianney has the best roster it has had in years, while Rumson-Fair Haven boasts one of the best starting pitching trios in the Shore Conference. Mix in the high-scoring offenses throughout the rest of the division, and Class A Central appears to have thin ice (and hitters parks) around every turn.
ANTHONY SANTORO, CATCHER, ST. JOHN VIANNEY – he Rutgers University recruit hit .416 with 10 extra-base hits (two home runs), stole 10 bases and assumes the mantle as the Shore’s top defensive catcher.
JOE SADLER, 1B, HOLMDEL – Led the conference in batting average (.552), on-base percentage (.628), and slugging percentage as a junior. ANDREW SCHULZ, 2B, SHORE – Table-setter (.489 on-base percentage) on a team that was quietly one of the better offenses in the Shore Conference in 2013.
AL MOLINA, SS, RED BANK CATHOLIC – Coastal Carolina recruit is one of the best in the field, at the plate and on the mound, which makes Molina a preseason Player of the Year candidate.
BRUCE STRICKLAND, 3B, RARITAN – Finished percentage points behind Sadler for the Shore Conference batting title (.551), rapped 10 doubles, and went 6-2 on the mound for good measure.
SJV Catcher Anthony Santoro and pitcher Dan Schirmacher
EVAN PIETRONICO, OF, ST. JOHN VIANNEY – New Jersey Institute of Technology recruit posted eyepopping numbers in the middle of the loaded Lancers order: .519 average, 10 doubles, four home runs, 10 stolen bases.
MATT COSENTINO, OF, SHORE – The George Washington University recruit was limited to 32 plate appearances last year, but he made them count: 12 hits, three doubles, two
triples, one homer, 10 walks, 11 stolen bases.
CHRIS DRUMMOND, OF, RUMSON-FAIR HAVEN – The two Division I pitchers on his team have generated most of the talk, but Drummond let his play do the talking last year: .449 on-base percentage with eight doubles, and a 3.36 ERA with 21 strikeouts in 25 innings.
VOLUME-VI JOE ROTELLI, 1B/DH, ST. JOHN VIANNEY – The CarsonNewman College recruit slugged a robust .787 as a junior, which was somehow only second on the team to Pietronico (.831).
TOM PUZA, RHP, RED BANK CATHOLIC – Quietly one of the most dependable pitchers in the Shore last year: 39 2/3 innings with a 1.06 ERA and 40 strikeouts.
MORGAN MAGUIRE, RHP, RUMSON-FAIR HAVEN – Will pitch for Justin Verlander’s alma mater (Old Dominion) in two years, but for now will help anchor a rotation that could be the Shore Conference’s version of the Detroit Tigers. SHANE MCCARTHY, RHP, RUMSON-FAIR HAVEN – Missed all of 2013 while recovering from elbow surgery, but reports have been positive on the Seton Hall recruit heading into his senior season. JUSTIN CHIN, LHP, ST. JOHN VIANNEY – Gutted through the 2013 season while battling some shoulder trouble, posting a 1.25 ERA with 32 strikeouts in 33 innings.
DAN SCHIRMACHER, RHP, ST. JOHN VIANNEY – One of the breakout pitchers of 2013, Schirmacher logged 48 quality innings (2.02 ERA) and earned a reputation as a staff horse in only his sophomore season.
Breakout Players to Watch
TOM PULCINE, INF, RARITAN – The .344/.412/.410 slash line as a sophomore suggests he could be the next big breakout offensive player at Raritan. And there is one of those every year. JACK SHEEHAN, 3B/P, MANASQUAN – After showing off his athleticism on the basketball court for the Warriors 19-4 squad, Sheehan brings versatility to the diamond for a potentially upstart Manasquan club. EVAN MADIGAN, 2B/SS, RED BANK CATHOLIC – Played some innings at second base at the end of his freshman year and is a projected top-of-the-order hitter for one of the Shore’s best programs heading into his sophomore year.
JAMES KELLY, 3B/P, SHORE – Had a breakout of sorts last year in the batter’s box (.319, five doubles), but the junior should also take a big leap forward on the mound while also further developing as a hitter and fielder.
appearances last year were staggering. His total number of official at-bats was equal to the number of times he reached base and his slash line of .545/.687/1.000 rivals that of Sadler, which should put Sadler’s year into perspective as well. Cosentino could be one of the Shore’s best offensive players this season, but if he can fully bounce back on the mound after an injury-shortened 2013, he could be a Player of the Year sleeper, which means Shore would likely be contending for a Group I title.
CAN MANASQUAN FLIP THE SCRIPT IN CLOSE GAMES?
TYLER FISCHER, SS, HOLMDEL – Held his own at the plate during his freshman year, so another year to mature physically could mean a jump up in production as a sophomore. IS THIS FINALLY VIANNEY’S YEAR IN CLASS A CENTRAL?
If ever there was a year for St. John Vianney to run down Red Bank Catholic, this should be it. RBC returns enough talent to start the season as the favorite considering the Caseys went 14-0 in the division last year, but no team outside of Wall returns the amount of production that Vianney brings back. If the Lancers can keep their top three pitchers healthy and Red Bank Catholic has some trouble putting a staff together, SJV could dethrone the defending champs. WITH TWO PRESUMABLY HEALTHY DIVISION I PITCHERS HEADING THE ROTATION, IS RUMSON A THREAT TO WIN THE DIVISION?
No team with two Division I arms at the top of its rotation can ever be considered a “sleeper” to win its regular-season division title, but if this season is supposed to be a race between non-public rivals Red Bank Catholic and St. John Vianney, then Rumson is the team that could sneak through the back door. Any team that relies on two or three pitchers is also crossing its fingers that those arms stay nice and healthy, but if they do and the Bulldogs can become just an averageto-above-average team in the field and at the plate, that gives them a shot. WHAT CAN MATT COSENTINO DO WITH A FULL SEASON AND WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR SHORE? The numbers Cosentino put up in 22 at-bats and 32 plate
The Baltimore Orioles’ surprise 2012 playoff appearance raised some debate about the degree to which luck is involved in a team’s record in one-run games (the Orioles went 29-9, a Major League record for winning percentage in such games). I’m not here to settle that debate, but if luck has anything to do with it – or even if the slightest adjustment can change the fortunes of a team – then Manasquan could be one of the surprise teams in the conference this year. Not only should the Warriors improve as their young core develops, but they should also be able to avoid a 1-8 record in one-run games and a 2-12 record in games decided by three runs or fewer, which was the nightmare they endured last year. WHAT DOES THE POST-JARMUSZ ERA HAVE IN STORE FOR MONMOUTH?
Paul Crivello is disciple of Ted Jarmusz, so while Crivello will bring his own approach to coaching, the culture of baseball at Monmouth should remain for the time being. Unfortunately for Monmouth, while the culture remains, the players don’t. The Falcons have to replace their top two pitchers and the entire middle of the batting order, which is more than they’ve had to address in recent years. There have been years in which there was not much pitching returning or the offense had some question marks going into the season, but this is the first year in some time that Monmouth will not have any power bats or arms returning to the fold. In the long run, Crivello could very well pick up where Jarmusz left off, but it might have to start with baby steps as he looks to reload the program.
By Matt Manley – Staff Writer
Teams listed by predicted order of finish
IS CBA’S TRIO OF SLUGGING OUTFIELDERS AND A TALENTED SOPHOMORE BATTERY ENOUGH TO REPEAT IN A NORTH?
espite some early-season drama, Class A North turned out to be no contest last year, with Christian Brothers Academy rolling to wins in its last nine division games to win the division by three games over Howell and Middletown South. The Colts will have to replace some of the best graduating talent in the Shore Conference and while they are sorting things out, the rest of the division will attempt to pounce on the opportunity to take control of the race.
Just as is the case in Class A South, there are a whole lot of possibilities when it comes to the possible order of the standings at the end of the season. Marlboro and Freehold Township finished last year strong, Howell started fast and all three bring back a lot of talent. Manalapan has a promising sophomore class that is ready to complement the returning pieces, while Middletown South returns some position-player talent and always seems to exceed expectations. CBA is the defending champ and is, thus, the favorite, but this division won’t be a runaway again this season.
BRANDON MARTORANO, CATCHER, CBA – Although he looked like a freshman at the plate at times, any struggles Martorano had were par for the course for a player still growing into his frame. He showed an advanced approach and some power in a small sample of at-bats while also displaying a polished game behind the dish. He has already committed to North Carolina as a sophomore. NICK CARDACE, 1B, FREEHOLD TWP. – Season went overlooked last year on a non-playoff team, but Cardace is right up there with any hitter in the division.
KYLE BREY, SS, MIDDLETOWN SOUTH – Excellent defensive shortstop and steady at the plate in each of the last three years for one of the Shore’s top public school programs.
JOHN DIANA, SS, MANALAPAN – Showed his offensive ceiling with a .396 average and seven doubles during his sophomore year.
CHRIS TALBOTT, 3B, FREEHOLD TWP. – One of the best two-way players in the division also has a nice combination of power and speed. Talbott went deep twice and also swiped 10 bags last year.
RYAN RAMIZ, OF, CBA – Coming off a big year at the plate in which he hit .483 with a .600 slugging percentage, Ramiz will probably pitched differently now that Joe Dudek is not hitting behind him.
WILL MORGAN, OF, CBA – Although it was eight behind Dudek, Morgan was second on the team with three homers as a sophomore last year and figures to be a top run-producer this year for the Colts.
JORDAN GONZALEZ, OF, COLTS NECK – After mashing (.350/.422/.650 with three homers) in 40 at-bats last year, the Cougars would take a fraction of that over 70 this year.
PETE PAPCUN, OF/3B, CBA – Could have used some more breaks in a year in which he hit .263, but the Monmouth University recruit showed some power (five extra-base hits) and patience (.383 on-base percentage).
The Colts don’t have quite as much back as Howell or Freehold Township does, but they were also much better than every other A North team over the course of the schedule last season. Ryan Ramiz, Pete Papcun and Will Morgan all hit in the middle of the batting order last year and stack up with any other middle-of-theorder in the division. There are also some other good pitchers and catchers in the division, but none have the ceiling that Dalatri and Martorano do. Dalatri already looks like one of the top pitchers in the conference based on his freshman year results.
RYAN WARES, RHP/2B, HOWELL – Arguably the best offensive player in the division as well, Wares will need to be a shutdown, No. 1 pitcher again as the Rebels look to ride the momentum from last year’s surprise season.
LUCA DALATRI, RHP, CBA – At an athletic 6’5” with a fastball that already approaches 90 miles-per-hour, Dalatri has all the makings of another great CBA pitcher and was awfully close to such status last year when he pitched to a 1.25 ERA and allowed only 33 baserunners in 39 1/3 innings with 40 strikeouts.
ANDREW NARDI, LHP, MARLBORO – With ace Adam Ashenfarb on the shelf, Nardi stepped into the role of ace and helped lead Marlboro to the Central Jersey Group IV semifinals.
JOE ELLERMAN, RHP, FREEHOLD TWP. – Went 5-1 with a 1.38 ERA as a junior and was the winning pitcher in a win over Jackson Memorial, the highlight of Freehold Township’s eight-game winning streak to end the season.
ALEX WOLF, RHP, MANALAPAN – One of the more reliable returning arms in the division, Wolf pitched to a 2.80 ERA in 40 innings as a junior last season.
Breakout Players to Watch
TYLER KAY, OF, COLTS NECK – After hitting .345 as a sophomore, look for Kay to add some pop to his stat line as a junior
JAKE SADOWITZ, LHP/1B, MANALAPAN – Has the skills and make-up to become one of the Shore Conference’s best two-way players and should help on the mound immediately.
CHRIS RODRIGUEZ, OF, MANALAPAN – Speedy center fielder wasn’t quite ready with the bat as a freshman last year, but should be ready to fly this season as part of a talented Manalapan sophomore class.
GRIFFIN ARNOTT, OF, CBA – Hit better than .400 in limited duty last year and could be lined up for a big junior season, similar to what Ramiz did for the Colts last year.
MATT PLATENYK, RHP, MIDDLETOWN SOUTH – The right-hander lost his junior season to injury and will look to make up for lost time. The Eagles always seem to come up with pitching and Platenyk looks like he could be the guy this year.
CAN FREEHOLD TOWNSHIP WIN ENOUGH GAMES EARLY TO MAKE ITS ANNUAL LATE-SEASON SURGE COUNT?
With a lot of juniors last year, the Patriots did not quite have the sense of urgency needed at the beginning of the season and it may have cost them a chance to play in the Shore Conference and NJSIAA Group IV tournaments. They did, however, close the season on an eight-game winning streak, which came a year after they won the Monmouth County Tournament to end the season. With more seniors in the mix this year and, quite frankly, more talent, Freehold Township looks poised to put it together in April this time around. AFTER A SURPRISING 2013, CAN HOWELL’S EXPERIENCED LINEUP HOLD UP OVER THE LONG HAUL?
The Rebels fell off after beginning the season 7-3 and ended up tied for second place in Class A North, three games out of first place. While that might have been a little disappointing based on where they started, it was right on schedule with the overall plan, as the Rebels ran out a lineup of mostly new starters that hoped to make some noise and position themselves for a run in 2014. That is exactly what they did and as long as they don’t feel haunted by a 4-7 finish to the season, there should be little to no ill-effects of the rough finish. CAN MIDDLETOWN SOUTH COMPETE WITHOUT A RETURNING “ACE”?
The Eagles have always survived heavy losses to graduation, but they have also had a returning pitcher at the top of the rotation in each of the last five years. Senior Matt Platenyk might have been in position to earn a rotation spot last year if not for an injury, so if he and the rest of the staff makes a smooth transition to the varsity mound, Middletown South has shown it can do the little things to win games. IS MANALAPAN BUILDING UP FOR ANOTHER MAJOR THREE-YEAR RUN?
The Braves’ talented Class of 2016 crop did not contribute to the varsity team last year, but now that the group is sophomores, it should start to make an impact this year. It will take strong years from seniors Alex Wolf and Matt Parke, as well as juniors John Diana and Nick Serra to form the foundation so that sophomores like Jake Sadowitz and Chris Rodriguez can step in and contribute to a winning team that could be especially dangerous come late May.
By Matt Manley – Staff Writer
Teams listed by predicted order of finish
nother baseball season is upon us and yet again, the Class B Central division goes though St. Rose. Even after Point Pleasant Beach dethroned the Purple Roses in 2010, the 2011 season came with the expectation that St. Rose would return angry and ready to take back the division (which it did).
The Roses, however, are not unbeatable and if they run the B Central table again like they did last year, they will have earned it. Point Beach, Mater Dei and Keansburg return enough talent to give St. Rose a push with the right pitching match-up and should the Roses drop a game the first time through the division schedule, things could get interesting.
fascinating players to watch because of his stellar sophomore season, as well as his exploits in football and basketball.
PAUL BACON, 3B, ASBURY PARK – Quietly had a solid season for the Blue Bishops, highlighted by a .442 on-base percentage, a .486 slugging percentage and three triples while playing the hot corner.
BEN THOMPSON, OF, HENRY HUDSON – Hit comfortably over .300 as a junior while ripping five doubles and three triples. Thompson also punched out 32 batters on the mound.
JOHNNY KUSSMAUL, OF, ST. ROSE – Although not a headliner yet, Kussmaul hit .353 with 16 runs scored as a sophomore on a 19-win Purple Roses team.
RYAN PRIMA, OF, POINT BEACH – Spent the season hitting near the bottom of Point Beach’s deep batting order, but still collected a number of big hits for the Gulls. He’ll shift up in the order this year.
MATT ECKERT, 2B, MATER DEI PREP – One of the better all-around returning players in the division, Eckert showed some pop from the second base position with two home runs and six doubles.
JOE RUTH, CATCHER, MATER DEI PREP – If you prefer your catchers play in April, go with Keyport’s Jonathan Trigg or St. Rose’s Will King. If you don’t mind the 30-day wait because of the NJSIAA transfer, then it’s hard to say no to last year’s numbers for the Keyport transfer. Or his last name. SEAN STRUNCIUS, 1B, POINT BEACH – Hit .326 with six doubles last year in a lineup that scores a lot of runs. Struncius should have plenty of chances to drive in runs with Noah Yates back in the order. CONOR GAMMOND, 2B, ST. ROSE – The lone Class B Central position player to find himself on an All-Shore team last season, Gammond should be considered among the best all-around infielders in the Shore to open the season.
JIMMY GOWEN, LHP, ST. ROSE – The lefty will move to the top of the St. Rose rotation, which has been a rather prestigious position over the last decade or so.
MIKE POLITANO, LHP, KEANSBURG – With 57 punchouts in 43 innings last year, Politano will look to put the Titans on his back as they try to make a run at a public division title.
JOHN VAN SCHOICK, RHP, POINT BEACH – Went 6-0 with a 2.06 ERA in 34 innings as a freshman and may again not have to carry the staff with Noah Yates back in the fold.
ANTHONY STANZIALE, RHP, MATER DEI PREP – The Seraphs struggled on the mound for most of last season, particularly against non-division competition, but Stanziale was sharp overall: 27 strikeouts with eight walks and an even 3.00 ERA in 30 innings.
PARKER HAGGERTY, RHP, ST. ROSE – A spot starter for one of the best pitching staffs in the Shore Conference last year, Haggerty will bring quality stuff to the hill for the Roses every three games or so as a starter.
Breakout Players to Watch
JOE BREHENY, 1B/P, KEANSBURG – After coming on at the end of last season, the senior first baseman will help anchor the middle of the Titans lineup and also give them some innings on the mound.
JAY CRISCUOLO, RHP, ST. ROSE – After going 2-0 with a 1.06 ERA last year in spot duty, the Purple Roses will rely a good deal on the junior right-hander this year while considering him as the No. 1 guy next year.
RYAN STEWART, 3B/1B, ST. ROSE – The Purple Roses always prepare the next players in line to step in and play, and Stewart showed he will be ready by hitting .400 in limited duty last year.
St. Rose 2nd baseman Conor Gammond NOAH YATES, SS, POINT BEACH – After missing all of 2013 because of elbow surgery, Yates will be one of the more
IAN TERRY, INF/P, KEANSBURG – Slotted as the No. 3 starter on the mound, Terry should give the Titans a little bit of everything, even when he’s not on the mound.
WILL WELLS, OF, ASBURY PARK – A senior with good tools, Wells got lost in the B North shuffle on a Neptune team that has struggled. He will join another struggling program, but he will also be facing the back of a lot of Group I rotations, which should be to his liking.
Burning Questions REMEMBER NOAH YATES?
If you follow Shore Conference basketball or football, the answer to this question is “Remember? How could I forget?” But if you are a baseball-only fan, the name might only ring a bell. Here are some numbers to refresh your memory: .436 average, 13 doubles, 23 RBI while playing standout defense at shortstop. Point Beach finished a game behind St. Rose with Yates as its shortstop in 2012 and although the Garnet Gulls have a lot to replace, they are getting a whole lot back in Yates, who is headed to Yale to play football. HOW WILL JIMMY GOWEN TAKE TO THE ROLE OF ST. ROSE ACE?
The job of the St. Rose’s top pitcher not only comes with a fair amount of prestige, but it also comes with a lot of responsibility. The pervasive stigma is that St. Rose pitchers have it easy pitching in Class B Central, but the No. 1 pitcher on the staff is more likely to get the ball against each top nondivisional opponent. Gowen should certainly have the confidence to handle the job after a fantastic junior season, so it’s just a matter of executing when he gets the ball. IS KEANSBURG READY TO MAKE A MOVE TO THE TOP OF THE DIVISION?
The Titans likely have the best two-way player (three-way counting defense) in the division in Mike Politano, at least among the players who played last year. Keansburg will have a chance against St. Rose with their ace on the mound, but the rest of the pitching staff will have to come through against the rest of the schedule. A more likely scenario is that Politano pitches Keansburg to a big win or two, but the Titans can’t quite keep up with the leader of the pack. WILL MATER DEI GET ENOUGH BOUNCE-BACK PERFORMANCES AT THE PLATE AND ON THE MOUND TO CONTEND FOR A DIVISION TITLE?
The Seraphs went 11-3 in the division last season, which is certainly something on which to build. If the goal is beating out St. Rose for a division title, the first step has to be to rack up wins against the rest of the division. Mater Dei went 11-1 against the division outside of St. Rose, which would have made things interesting if the Seraphs could have beaten St. Rose. With Point Beach and Keansburg boasting some top talent, St. Rose will have to be on top of their game at all times and if the Purple Roses are not, the door could be open for one of the other contenders. CAN RANNEY MAKE SOME MORE PROGRESS AFTER WINNING TWO B CENTRAL GAMES LAST SEASON?
Ranney is a rather fascinating case study and a little different than some of the public schools that recently joined the Shore Conference. The Panthers are an established program that is attempting to ramp up its program now that they are in a more competitive environment. Regardless of what one might think of Class B Central as compared to the five other Shore Conference divisions, it is a very competitive division to have to join as a small non-public program. The Panthers still have a young team and are still a relative unknown, so while 2014 appears to be another building year in the making, one of these years Ranney will sneak up on us all.
By Bob Badders – Staff Writer
standout face-off man Billy Sasso in the midfield along with 50-goal scorer Steven O’Brien and junior Brandon Nunez at attack. Juniors Collin Bitsko and Mike O’Brien anchor the defense in front of first-year starting goalie Chris Favale.
Team listed in alphabetical order
Christian Brothers Academy
HEAD COACH: Dave Santos, 16th season (200-78) 2013 RECORD: 12-6. 2014 OUTLOOK: The Colts return an experienced group of attackmen and midfielders, led by senior attackers Thomas Deiner and Matt McGuiness. Deiner is the leading returning scorer coming off a 35-goal, 31-assist season. McGuiness finished last season with 34 goals and 25 assists. Senior midfielders Thomas Palisi (17 goals) and Frank Isola, along with defensemen Brett Anderson and Joe Ventura, round out CBA’s returning starters. Junior middie Nicholas Gazzillo is coming off a 14-goal season and steps into a starting role. Junior Evan Bynoe steps into the starting goalie spot after the graduation of Jack Wilson.
HEAD COACH: Robert Schulte, 1st season 2013 RECORD: 3-13 2014 OUTLOOK: The Scarlet Fliers have a new head coach in Robert Schulte and bring back senior attackman Armando Quintana, seniors midfielders Josh Burns, Michael Dove and junior midfielder Ryan Balzarano, and senior defenseman Franklin Doremus.
HEAD COACH: Jeff Rosenberg, 10th season (85-68) 2013 RECORD: 12-7 2014 OUTLOOK: The Colts return an experienced group of attackmen and midfielders, led by senior attackers Thomas Deiner and Matt McGuiness. Deiner is the leading returning scorer coming off a 35-goal, 31-assist season. McGuiness finished last season with 34 goals and 25 assists. Senior midfielders Thomas Palisi (17 goals) and Frank Isola, along with defensemen Brett Anderson and Joe Ventura, round out CBA’s returning starters. Junior middie Nicholas Gazzillo is coming off a 14-goal season and steps into a starting role. Junior Evan Bynoe steps into the starting goalie spot after the graduation of Jack Wilson.
HEAD COACH: Mike Ferrando, 3rd season (22-10) 2013 RECORD: 15-3 2014 OUTLOOK: The Patriots lost a ton of offensive weapons from last season, including the Shore’s leading scorer, Dan Bloodgood. Freehold Township brings back standout face-off man Billy Sasso in the midfield along with 50-goal scorer Steven O’Brien and junior Brandon Nunez at attack. Juniors Collin Bitsko and Mike O’Brien anchor the defense in front of first-year starting goalie Chris Favale.
HEAD COACH: Anthony Bonjavanni, 2nd season (11-8) 2013 RECORD: 11-8 2014 OUTLOOK: The Patriots lost a ton of offensive weapons from last season, including the Shore’s leading scorer, Dan Bloodgood. Freehold Township brings back
head coach and has senior attackmen Matt Lewis and Tyler Giersbach, senior midfielder Chris Coyle, and senior defensemen Joe Delacalle, Eric Mallow and Brian Prestigiacomo as top returners as they look to climb the ladder in A North.
Howell junior midfielder Zach Ornstein
HEAD COACH: Mike Ferrando, 3rd season (22-10) 2013 RECORD: 15-3 2014 OUTLOOK: Junior attackmen Jake Sherman and Mark Buannic lead the offense with junior middie and face-off man Zach Ornstein providing solid two-way play. Junior defenseman Anthony Pozsonyi anchors the defense with junior Pete Rush stepping into the starting role in goal.
HEAD COACH: Fran Pannullo, 1st season 2013 RECORD: 0-18 2014 OUTLOOK: The Green Wave are on their third coach in as many seasons as they continue to work towards the program’s first win. Returners include Tyler Schick, Terry Manning, Chris Arcos, Alex Mishyn, Andrew Tomas, Ronald Guidetti, Christian Berrocal, Ishmael Best, Tomas Conlon, Erick Chavez, Kyle Marhan, Dax Davis and Alex Pellbring.
HEAD COACH: Alex Sinkovich, 1st season 2013 RECORD: 6-11 2014 OUTLOOK: Alex Sinkovich takes over as Mustangs
HEAD COACH: Warren Towns, 7th season (33-68) 2013 RECORD: 4-12 2014 OUTLOOK: Leading scorer Joey Appio, a sophomore, returns along with senior goalie Bobby Graziano and junior midfielder Steven Graziano, the latter of whom finished with 84 ground balls last season. The Spartans also return senior defenseman Chris Marcinkeiwitz, junior defenseman Hayden Matarrazzo, junior defenseman Chris Psomias, sophomore defenseman Alex Bravo, junior attackman Christian Goslin sophomore Midfielder Erik Rant and attackmen Connor Daly.
HEAD COACH: Don Femminella, 4rth season (32-27) 2013 RECORD: 8-11 2014 OUTLOOK: The Bucs graduated leading scorer Max Paris, but return plenty of offense with brothers Jake and Cole Smolokoff along with senior attackman Karl Hottman. The defense is lead by seniors Ryan Seely, Zach Bradley and Jack Hammond in front of sophomore goalie Jon Pierce. Senior attackman George Zackman has been productive early in the season, as well.
HEAD COACH: Chris Knight, 9th season (78-72) 2013 RECORD: 11-5 2014 OUTLOOK: All three starting attackmen return after combining for over 150 points last season. Seniors Kyle McDonough, Kyle Critchlow and Bruno Setteducati give the Crimson Knights one of the top attack lines in the Shore. Senior long stick midfielder Tim Foley had over 85 ground balls last season and leads the defense along with seniors Phi Shields and Nicholas Bongiovanni. Senior Hunter Kaplan returns as Wall’s starting goalie. Sophomore Michael Steppe has been solid early and gives Wall another weapon on attack.
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By Bob Badders – Staff Writer
Team listed in alphabetical order
HEAD COACH: Sal Guastella, 6th season (48-38) 2013 RECORD: 9-6
2014 OUTLOOK: The Hornets return a strong group of seniors that includes attackman Joe Tages, midfielders Mark Scherzer and Matt Dixon, and defenseman Tim Davis as they look to remain among the Shore’s best. Tages is the leading returning scorer after posting 31 goals and 17 assists last season. Scherzer had 13 goals and 19 assists along with 50 ground balls, and Dixon had 12 goals and eight assists, 129 ground balls and won 52 percent of face-offs. Davis, a standout pole, had 87 ground balls.
HEAD COACH: Rob Hoffman, 1st season 2013 RECORD: 111-9
2014 OUTLOOK: Standouts Joe Murphy and Blaine Birch lead the Warriors for first-year head coach Rob Hoffman. Birch was a top-10 scorer in the Shore last season with 74 points. Jack Bianco and Kieran Preston also return for one of the conference’s oldest programs.
HEAD COACH: Howard Baranker, 1st season 2013 RECORD: 0-13
2014 OUTLOOK: The Griffins snapped a 19-game losing streak this season and look to build from there under firstyear head coach Howard Baranker. Senior midfielders Couper McClay and Dante Mojares return along with junior
attackman Kevin Higgins, junior long stick middie Lawrence Aliseo and junior defenseman Mike Merlucci.
Red Bank Catholic
HEAD COACH: Ryan Eichner, 10th season (83-70) 2013 RECORD: 4-11
2014 OUTLOOK: The Caseys were young and inexperienced last season, leading to an uncharacteristic 4-11 season. They return their leading scorer, junior attackman Tim Barrile, along with senior midfielder Alex Spezio, the leading returner on ground balls. Sophomore Matt Benjamin steps into the starting spot in goal.
HEAD COACH: Andy Eastwood, 1st season 2013 RECORD: 18-3
2014 OUTLOOK: The Bulldogs have established themselves as the premier team in the Shore Conference and continue to climb the state’s hierarchy. They advanced to the NJSIAA Group I final last season, falling to powerful Mountain Lakes, 8-6. Rumson graduated several top players, but has plenty of talent returning to make a run at its fourth straight Shore Conference Tournament title. Johns Hopkins recruit Chris Hubler controls the midfield while Syracuse recruit Conner Phillips and Siena recruit J.T. Jennings anchor a stingy defense. Chestnut Hill recruit Colin Shea, a 30-goal scorer, leads the attackmen along with senior Dominic Padula and promising sophomore Robbie Garavente. Seniors Bryce Metzger and Logan Pagano give Rumson a pair of top-notch goalies to work with after the graduation of Dylan Rotchford.
St. John Vianney
HEAD COACH: Mike Dowd, 5th season at SJV, 25th overall (185-153)
2013 RECORD: 7-12
2014 OUTLOOK: Senior attackmen T.J. Coleman, Pat Gribbon and Christian Byer give the Lancers an experienced group of scorers to work with. Also returning are senior attackman Dan Louriero, senior defenseman Ryan Lucas, senior midfielder Joe Poretta, junior long stick midfielder Aidan Cole, junior defensemen Lou Iovine and Kyle Boyle, sophomore goalie D.J. Soriano, junior middies Matt Adelfio and Rich Mullarkey and sophomore defenseman Mike Gentile.
HEAD COACH: Kevin Preston, 1st season 2013 RECORD: 3-12
2014 OUTLOOK: First-year head coach Kevin Preston inherits a team that returns leading scorer Matt Frost (31-1950) along with defensemen Joe Erbe and J.P. Regan, who had 102 and 81 ground balls, respectively, last season. Also returning are attackman Sean Sullivan, junior attackman Scott Dimmit, junior defenseman Andrew Sarre and junior long stick midfielder Louis Melone.
HEAD COACH: Greg Malfa, 4th season (31-21) 2013 RECORD: 13-5
2014 OUTLOOK: The Blue Devils took a big step forward in 2013 and look to continue their winning ways under fourthyear head coach Greg Malfa. Returners include senior goalie Christian Bostwick, senior defenseman Kurt Hendricksen, senior attackman Chris Francisco, senior attackman Evan Jones, senior midfielders Dennis Vaccaro and Kevin Newenhouse, junior defenseman James Bedell, junior long stick midfielder Mitchell Candido and sophomore middie Doug Goldsmith.
By Bob Badders – Staff Writer
Team listed in alphabetical order
HEAD COACH: Ryan Dalon, ninth season (31-98) 2013 RECORD: 11-8 2014 OUTLOOK: The Bengals have the look of a program on the rise coming off consecutive winning seasons, including a program-best 11 wins last year. Senior attackman Ethan Tonneson returns after a breakout season in which he scored 41 goals and dished out 51 assists. He is one of three returning 20-goal scorers from last season along with junior attackman Matt Manno (27-19-46) and sophomore midfielder J.J. McKenna (23-12-35). McKenna also collected a team-best 84 ground balls and won 58 percent of face-offs. Junior midfielder Ricky Gerena added 75 ground balls. Senior defenseman Greg Moran and senior goaltender Matt Grobelny lead the defense. Grobelny had a .650 save percentage last season.
HEAD COACH: Len Zdanowicz, 3rd season (22-13) 2013 RECORD: 10-7 2014 OUTLOOK: Leading scorer David Kearns, a senior attackman, leads the Green Dragons’ group of returners after scoring 54 goals and adding 43 assists to finish third in the Shore in scoring with 97 points. Kearns also had 78 ground balls. Senior attackman Louie Ray finished with 24 goals, 20 assists and 64 ground balls last season and senior midfielder Brendan Rack added 76 ground balls. Junior midfielders Hunter Palmer and Pat Adamatis, senior midfielder Wasif Amin, junior defenseman Kyle Leary and sophomore attackman Anthony DiChristina round out Brick’s top returners.
HEAD COACH: Brent Middlemiss 2013 RECORD: 8-9 2014 OUTLOOK: The Mustangs need to replace virtually all of their scoring from last season, and will do so with senior midfielder Griffin Carney and junior attackman Bailey Sharpe as returning double-digit goal scorers. Senior Christian McGratty has gotten off to a strong start with 12 goals in the team’s first four games. Senior Jake Lombardo anchors the defense in front of first-year starting goalie, senior C.J. Guarino.
HEAD COACH: James Buchanan, 2nd season (14-3) 2013 RECORD: 14-3 2014 OUTLOOK: The Jaguars were hit exceptionally hard by graduation, losing some top defenders and their three leading scorers who accounted for over 175 points last season. Junior attackman Troy Wolf returns to lead the offense after a 28goal sophomore season and senior Vinny Celidonio anchors the defense in front of senior goalie Cody Weisel, who posted a .647 save percentage last season. Senior middie and face-off ace Scott Wedgeworth also returns off a junior season in which he won 66 percent of draws and also picked up 127 ground balls. It’s been a rough start for the Jags so far, as
they’ve dropped their first four game to open the season.
HEAD COACH: Anthony Dzienkiewicz, 1st season 2013 RECORD: 6-10 2014 OUTLOOK: Junior middie Andrew Ferullo and sophomore middies Matthew Ferullo and Joe Leone have led the offensive charge early in the season with six, five and five goals, respectively, through the teams 2-2 start to the season under first-year head coach Anthony Dzienkiewicz. Key returners for the Lions include senior defensemen Dominick Logotte and A.J. Korzonowski, senior attackman Bill Londis, sophomore goalie Christopher Mullholland, sophomore long stick midfielder Christopher Stefanowicz, junior attackman Connor Moschetti, junior middie Shawn DeJesus and junior defenseman Patrick Gahagan.
HEAD COACH: Shane Allen, 5th season (13-56) 2013 RECORD: 10-8 2014 OUTLOOK: The Loins made great strides last season in qualifying for the Shore Conference and NJSIAA Tournaments, and so far this year have proven they’re a program gaining traction. They defeated Jackson Memorial for the first time in program history in the opening weeks and also posted a victory over Wall as part of a 4-1 start. Catholic University-bound senior Dan Cannon leads the cast of returning starters along with senior attackman and Belmont Abbey recruit Joe Long and senior defenseman Casey Sullivan, a Marywood recruit. Five juniors have joined the fray this season, including football standouts George Sayre and Lucas Sirotniak.
will look to senior attackman Kevin Kennedy to lead the charge offensively with fellow seniors Matt Gudzak, Rich Wajda and Nick Sarnowski. Senior Dylan Jusino leads the defense in front of senior goaltender Sean Hopf. Junior attackman Robert Long and sophomore middies Eric Johnson and Mike Grasso round out the Raiders cast of returners.
Toms River North
HEAD COACH: Brett Smith, 11th season (74-64) 2013 RECORD: 4-11 2014 OUTLOOK: The Mariners look to rebound from a 4-11 season with senior returners Kevin Dougherty, Joe Suchocki, Tayler Boschetti and Ryan Prima in the midfield, junior attackman Mike Colello, junior defenseman Alex Scherer, junior middies Tyler Foss and Joe Vitiello and senior defenseman Gunnar VanBezooijen. Newcomers include sophomore poles Tom Donovan and Matt Haegan, junior midfielder Mike Hoy, sophomore attackmen Josh Francis and Ryan Clancy, sophomore goalie Austin Bennet and freshman attackman Andrew Lombardi.
Toms River South
HEAD COACH: Matt Zuech, 11th season (72-85) 2013 RECORD: 4-10 2014 OUTLOOK: After an 0-2 start, the Indians picked up a huge 6-5 win over Freehold Township, which could provide momentum heading into the bulk of their divisional schedule. Key returners for Toms River South include senior attackman Dino Vitale, senior goalie Jeremy Brown, senior defensemen Garret Hall and Mike Donzanti, senior midfielder C.J. Muller, junior defenseman Colin Enright and sophomore LSM Pat Toal.
HEAD COACH: John Pampalone, 8th season (82-45) 2013 RECORD: 18-2 2014 OUTLOOK: The Rams made history last season in winning the Class A South division title, reaching the Shore Conference Tournament final and advancing all the way to the Group IV final. The Rams lost a good amount to graduation, but also return a ton of firepower as they look to reach the top. Junior attackman Dylan Jinks, a Hartford recruit, is coming off a 53-goal, 31-assist season in which he was a All Shore Media first team attackman as well as the South Jersey Player of the Year and a US Lacrosse AllAmerican. Junior attackman Brendan Mullen also posted 53 goals with 20 assists, while junior middie Shawn McManus returns after a balanced 63-point year. Senior face-off ace Billy Dowd returns after winning 82 percent of his draws last season. Junior defenseman Mike Adragna, a 6-foot-3 player who will be starting for the third straight season, anchors the defense in front of standout junior Brendan Lefanto, who had a .700 save percentage last season. Double-digit scorers Chris Smith, a junior, and Brian Dunphey, a senior, give Southern great depth in the midfield.
Toms River East
HEAD COACH: George Peters, 11th season 2013 RECORD: 6-10 2014 OUTLOOK: The Raiders are faced with the task of replacing all of their top players after a 6-10 season. They
Special Thanks to the photographers who supplied the photos seen throughout this issue
Southern junior attackmen Dylan Jinks
A Memorable Day of Basketball
By Scott Stump â€“ Managing Editor
t was another great send-off for the seniors to cap the Shore Conference basketball season at this yearâ€™s Shore Basketball Coaches Association Senior All-Star Games on March 28 th at Wall.
VOLUME-VI Jackson Liberty
Field locations may vary. Check with school Barnegat
School Address: 180 Bengal Boulevard, Barnegat Directions: From the north - Parkway to exit 67 (Barnegat). Make a left at the end of the exit ramp onto Bay Avenue. At second light make a left onto Barnegat Boulevard North. Go approximately one mile and make a left onto Bengal Boulevard. School is on the left. From the South-Parkway to Exit 63. Follow route 72 east to route 9 north. Make a left onto Bay Avenue. Make a right onto Barnegat Boulevard North and follow above direction.
School Address: 346 Chambers Bridge Road, Brick Directions: From north - Parkway exit 91. Stay right off exit. Go straight at light, follow to Route 88. Cross Route 88, go under Parkway overpass and school is just ahead on right. From south- Parkway exit 90. School is short distance on right from off-ramp.
School Address: 2001 Lanes Mill Road, Brick Directions: From South - Parkway exit 90. Ramp will put you on Chambers Bridge Road. Take first jughandle U-turn and go west on Chambers Bridge Road. Cross Route 88 and follow to second light, where there is a convenience store on the left and a gas station on the right. The right and go over the Parkway. Pass the 7-Eleven and take the jughandle left turn for Lanes Mill Road. Go straight across, bear right just pass Lanes Mill Elementary School. High school is on right. From north - Parkway exit 91. Bear left after the toll. Follow jughandle around, turn right at light at gas station. Follow directions above after going over the Parkway.
School Address: Forest Hills Parkway, Berkeley Directions: From north - Parkway exit 77. Turn left off exit onto Double Trouble Road, follow it to traffic light. Turn left on Forest Hills Parkway. School is just ahead on right. Parking entrance is at far end of school or at middle school lot. From south - Parkway exit 77. Turn right on Forest Hills Parkway. School is just ahead on right. Parking entrance is at far end of school or at middle school lot.
School Address: 125 North Hope Chapel Road, Jackson Directions: From south- Route 9 north to Cox Cro Road Road in Toms River. Make a left onto Cox Cro and follow about two miles to 527 (Whitesville Road). Make a right onto 527 and follow for about 4-5 miles. Make a right onto South Hope Chapel Road/CR-547. School is just ahead on the left. From north - Parkway exit 98. Take I-195 west to Exit 21. Bear left and turn onto Route 527 South. Follow for 6-7 miles and turn left onto South Hope Chapel Road (just after 527 becomes 528 at Whitesville Road). School is about a half mile on the right.
School Address: Don Connor Boulevard, Jackson Directions: From south - Route 9 north to Route 571. Go about 10-12 miles west to Route 528 intersection. Turn right on Route 528. Continue on Don Connor Boulevard and make a right. School is a quarter mile on the left. From north - Parkway exit 98. Take I-195 west to exit 21. Bear left and turn onto Route 527 South. At second light turn right onto Route 528. Continue to Don Connor Boulevard and make a left. Follow directions above.
School Address: Haines Street, Lacey Directions: Parkway Exit 74. Turn right on Lacey Road. Follow less than two miles, take jughandle left turn for Manchester Avenue. Go to the first light, turn right on Haines Street. School is on the right.
School Address: 855 Somerset Ave, Lakewood Directions: From south - Parkway exit 90. Take immediate jughandle U-turn to go west on Chambers Bridge Road. Turn left onto Route 88, follow to New Hampshire Avenue and turn right. Take New Hampshire to end, turn left onto Ridge. Go about 1 Â˝ miles to school on right. From north - Parkway exit 91. Stay right off exit. Go straight at light, follow road to Route 88 intersection. Turn right on Route 88 and follow rest of directions above.
School Address: 101 Colonial Drive, Manchester Directions: Parkway to Exit 82A. Take Route 37 west about five miles to jughandle for Colonial Drive. Cross 37 and follow back to school parking lot.
School Address: 711 Hooper Avenue, Toms River Directions: Parkway to Exit 82. Take Route 37 east and turn right on Hooper Avenue. Go south on Hooper about a half mile and turn left at the first light. School is on the right.
School Address: Indiana Avenue, Long
Field locations may vary. Check with school Asbury Park
School Address: 1003 Sunset Avenue, Asbury Park Directions: From south - Parkway exit 100A. Take Route 66 east to traffic circle. Follow Route
35 north to Sunset Avenue. Turn right; school is about two miles on left. From north - Parkway exit 102 to Asbury Avenue east. Asbury Avenue runs into Route 66 and then same as above.
School Address: 59 Five Points Road, Colts Neck Directions: Route 34 to Route 537 west toward Freehold. School is two to three miles ahead
on the left.
School Address: 2 Robertsville Road, Freehold Directions: Take Route 18 to Route 79 south. Turn left onto Robertsville Road. Filed is one
block ahead on left.
School Address: 281 Elton-Adelphia Road, Freehold Township Directions: Take Route 9 to Elton-Adelphia Road (Route 524). Go west on Route 524.
School is one mile ahead on left.
School Address: 405 Squankum-Yellowbrook Road, Howell Directions: Route I-195 west to Lakewood-Farmingdale exit for Route 547 west (toward
Farmingdale). Go about 200 yards to Squankum-Yellowbrook Road, turn left. School is about two miles on left.
School Address: 36 Crawfords Corner Road, Holmdel Directions: Parkway exit 114. Go west on Red Hill Raod. At first intersection, turn right onto
Crawfords Corner Road. School is one and a half miles ahead on the right.
School Address: 140 Port Monmouth Road, Keansburg Directions: Parkway exit 114. Turn right off ramp onto Red Hill Road. At first light, turn left
onto VanShoik Road. VanSchoik becomes Laurel Avenue. Take Laurel across Route 35 to Route 36. Turn right on Route 36 and take to jughandle left turn for Main Street. At first light, turn right onto Port Monmouth Road. School is down on the right.
School Address: 351 Broad Street, Keyport Directions: Parkway exit 117. Take G.S. Parkway Exit 117. Bear left on to Route 36 south.
Take jughandle left onto Atlantic Street. School is on the left.
School Address: Nugentown Road, Little Egg Harbor Directions: Parkway Exit 58. Take Route 539 east about three miles. Turn right on Nugentown Road. School is three miles on the right.
Point Pleasant Beach
School Address: St. Louis and Chicago Avenues, Pt. Pleasant Beach Directions: From north - Route 35 south. After crossing Manasquan River, follow signs for Broadway/Beach and make U-turn onto route 35 North. Make a quick right onto Broadway. Make a right onto St. Louis Avenue and follow until you see the field. From south Route 35 north. Make a right onto Broadway and continue with above listed directions.
Point Pleasant Boro
School Address: Laura Herbert Drive, Point Pleasant Directions: From north - Parkway Exit 91. Stay left off exit and take jughandle around to light at gas station. Turn right and follow Burnt Tavern Road to Route 70. Turn left on Route 70 and at next intersection turn right onto Herbertsville Road. Stay on Herbertsville Road to intersection with Route 88. Go straight through light to school less than a mile on the right. From south - Route 88 east to Beaver Dam Road and make a right. School entrance is ahead on right.
School Address: 600 North Main St. (Route 9), Stafford Directions: Parkway exit 63. Take Route 72 east about two miles and bear right onto Route 9 north. Take Route 9 about three miles and school is on the left.
Toms River East
School Address: Raider Way, Toms River Directions: Parkway Exit 82, Take Route 37 east to Coolidge Avenue jughandle. Go north on Coolidge one mile to Raider Way. Turn left, school entrance is on the left.
Toms River North
School Address: Old Freehold Road, Toms River Directions: Parkway Exit 82. Take Route 37 East. At first light take a jughandle left onto Route 166 north. Bear right at next traffic light onto Old Freehold Road. School is about three miles ahead on right.
Toms River South
School Address: 101 Hyers Street, Toms River Directions: Parkway exit 82. Take Route 37 east. Turn right onto Hooper Avenue. The field is a half mile down on the right behind the Ocean County Courthouse.
School Address: 55 Neptune Boulevard, Neptune. Directions: From north: Parkway Exit 102. Make a right on Asbury Avenue after the exit and
Directions: Parkway exit 105. Take Route 36 east, bear onto route 71 past Monmouth University and turn left on Westwood Avenue. Make a right onto Bath Avenue and then a right onto Indiana Avenue. School is ahead on right.
take that until it intersects with Rt. 66 east. Bear right on to Neptune Boulevard and stay to the right at the exit. Go straight at the stop sign and go through the next traffic light. School is down on the right. From south: Take Parkway Exit 100 A (Rt. 66 East/Asbury Park) and follow directions above from Rt. 66.
School Address: 30 Church Lane, Manalapan Directions: Route 9 to Route 522 west. Turn right on Tennent Road, then left on
School Address: 550 West Park Avenue, Ocean Township Directions: Route 35 to West Park Avenue. Go east on West Park Avenue, school is a half
Church lane. School is a half mile on right.
mile on the right.
School Address: 159 Broad Street, Manasquan Directions: From north - Parkway exit 98. Take Route 34 south two miles to Manasquan/Sea
School Address: 419 Middle Road, Hazlet Directions: From north - Parkway exit 114. Make a left off the exit onto Red Hill Road,
Girt Exit. Go under Route 34 and follow Atlantic Avenue through circle. School is about one mile ahead on left. From south - Parkway exit 98. Take route 138 west to route 34 south, follow rest of above directions.
School Address: 95 Route 79, Marlboro Directions: Route 18 north to Route 79 north. School is a few miles ahead on left.
School Address: 450 Atlantic Avenue, Aberdeen Directions: Parkway exit 117. Bear left off exit (passing northbound tollbooths) and get in left
lane of Route 35 south. Turn left onto Route 35 north and follow sign back to the Parkway. Before toll booth, turn right on Clark Street. At light, turn left on Lloyd Road. At next light, turn right on Church Street. At next light, turn right on Atlantic. School is just ahead on the right.
School Address: 538 Church Street, Middletown Directions: Parkway exit 114. Turn right on Red Hill Road, follow to end. Turn left onto
Kings Highway, and right on Harmony Road, Take Harmony Road across Route 35 and turn right on Cherry Tree Farm Road. School is one and a half miles ahead on left.
School Address: 63 Tindall Road, Middletown Directions: Parkway exit 114. Turn right onto Red Hill Road and follow to end. Turn right
onto Kings Highway. Make a right and follow to Route 35 south to the jughandle for Tindall Road. Take the jughandle and then make a right to Tindall Road. The school will be a half mile on right.
School Address: 501 Nutswamp Road, Middletown Directions: Parkway exit 114. Go east on Red Hill Road to light for Dwight Road. Turn right
on Dwight Road to Middletown-Lincroft Road. Cross Middletown-Lincroft Road to Nutswamp. School is a half mile on the right.
which turns into Laurel Avenue. Follow Laurel north across Route 35 to Middle Road. Turn left, school is on the right. From south - Parkway Exit 114. Turn right onto Red Hill Road, which turns into Laurel Avenue. Follow Laurel north across Route 35 to Middle Road. Turn left, school is on the right.
Red Bank Regional
School Address: 101 Ridge Road, Little Silver Directions: Parkway exit 109. Take Newman Springs Road east to end to Route 35 (Broad Street),
turn left. At the second light, turn right on Harding Road. School is one and a half miles on right.
Red Bank Catholic
School Address: 112 Broad Street, Red Bank Directions: Parkway exit 105. Take Rt. 520 (Newman Springs Road) east for about 4 miles
and make a left at the traffic light on to Rt. 35 north/Broad Street. School is about 1 1/2 miles down on the left.
School Address: 74 Ridge Road, Rumson Directions: Parkway exit 109. Take Newman Springs Road east to Route 35 (Broad Street),
turn left. At the second light, turn right on Harding Road. After about three miles, Harding becomes Ridge Road. Pass Red Bank Regional High School and go about three more miles. Rumson-Fair Haven will be on the left.
St. John Vianney
School Address: 540 Road, Holmdel Directions: Parkway exit 117. Bear left off exit (passing northbound tollbooths) and get in left
lane of Route 35 south. Turn left onto Route 35 north and follow sign back to the parkway. Before tollbooth, turn right onto Clark Street. At light, turn left on Lloyd Road. At first light, turn left onto Church Street. At next light, turn right onto Line road. School is on left.
School Address: Route 36 east, West long Branch Directions: Parkway exit 105. Take route 36 a few miles, cross route 71. School is
just ahead on the right.
north to Tinton Avenue. Turn left on Tinton Avenue and go about half a mile to school entrance on the right, just before Parkway overpass.
turn right onto New Bedford Road. Follow to school entrance on left.
School Address: 1 Normal J. Field Way, Tinton Falls Directions: Parkway to exit 105. Take jughandle at first traffic light to Hope Road and go
School Address: 18th Avenue & New Bedford Road, Wall Directions: Parkway exit 98. Take Route 138 east about two miles to second light,