WEST ORANGE, NJ — The West Orange baseball team has drawn the second seed in a region that it will host in the Last Dance Tournament that begins next Tuesday.
The Last Dance Baseball Tournament will involve 222 teams--including West Orange--from all over New Jersey participating in a three-week competition that will begin with three days of pool play followed by two weeks' worth of bracket-style playoffs. Every team will be guaranteed at least three games during the pool play portion, which will begin July 14.
In the West Orange Regional, to be played over three days at West Orange High School, the Mountaineers will host third-seeded Passaic Valley at 7 p.m. Tuesday. That is the nightcap of a pool-play doubleheader that begins with top-seeded Seton Hall Prep playing Belleville at 2 p.m. at WOHS.
On Wednesday, the winners of Tuesday's two games will play each other at 2 p.m. The other two teams will meet at 7 p.m. Wednesday. Those games also will be at WOHS.
On Thursday, the two second-place teams in the West Orange and Montclair Regional pool play games from Tuesday and Wednesday will play at 2 p.m. in West Orange. The two first-place teams from those respective regions will play at 7 p.m. Thursday in West Orange, with the winner advancing to the bracket portion of the tourney the following week.
The third- and fourth-place teams in the West Orange and Montclair regions will play at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. Thursday at Nishuane Park in Montclair.
As something that is taking place out of season, the tournament is not an NJSIAA event. It is being organized by Mike Murray Jr., the head baseball coach at St. Joseph High School in Metuchen, with help from Millburn coach Brian Chapman and an area baseball scout, J.T. Kroeger. Teams will play under National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) rules.