FLEMINGTON, NJ - In the second round of the NJSIAA State Tournament the East Brunswick Bears played the Hunterdon Central Red Devils. The Bears took an early 1-0 lead and the Red Devils’ offense looked non-existent. However, the Red Devils finally came alive in the fifth inning and tallied six runs. The Bears could not come back from this big deficit as they fell 6-1 and were eliminated from the State Tournament.
Senior Tyler Burnham got the start for the Bears and he looked extremely dominant early. Burnham only surrendered three hits before the fifth inning. Burnham ultimately finished with five innings pitched, allowing six hits and recording four strikeouts. The Senior did not get much help from his defense as the Red Devils scored five runs from errors. Junior Scott Dessel also pitched one inning in relief and had a quick 1-2-3 inning.
In the top of the second inning Junior Brandon Rosenthal hit a single with two outs. The following batter was Senior Jay Marchese who also hit a single putting runners on first and second. Junior James Schuld took advantage of the runner in scoring in position as he hit an RBI single to take an early 1-0 lead.
After the second inning the game was mainly dominated by defense for a couple of innings. In the bottom of the fifth inning Hunterdon Central led off with a double to left field. The next batter laid down a sacrifice bunt that looked like it should be a sure out but the Red Devils scored off of an error. A walk followed by another error setup runners on second and third.The next batter hit a RBI single that scored two runs to take a 3-1 lead. A few batters later a passed ball and an additional error allowed Hunterdon Central to score two more runs. East Brunswick finally got out of the inning after the Red Devils hit an RBI double to take a commanding 6-1 lead.
With the Bears trailing 6-1, East Brunswick could not put together any offense to try to claw their way back into the game. The Bears only had one batter reach base in the last two innings. After jumping out to a good start the Bears had three costly errors that allowed Hunterdon Central to grab a 6-1 victory.