EDISON, NJ- Hawk baseball is back and the J.P. Stevens Hawks baseball team has been preparing for opening day on Wednesday, April 1st. The Hawks are coming off of a season where they were 14-13 which earned them a place in the state playoffs.
“We really are looking forward to this season and are expecting to do much better this year.” Dave Marzano head coach said. “We have a lot of depth in our pitching rotation this year, and our defense looks solid.”
Expectations are very high for J.P. Stevens this year as the Hawks look to build off of their summer Greater Middlesex County championship victory.
“I think our guys really played well, and we are going to build off of the summer county championship,” Marzano said.
The Hawks have a lot of pitchers in senior Dennis Cooper and juniors Frank LoGuidice, Mike Katims and Alex Zilli who are returning varsity pitchers from last season. Rounding out the pitcher staff are juniors Matthew Elko and Zach Marzano.
“This season, the difference for us is gonna be how well we execute in the field, and how well we hit,” Marzano added, “Games when we can score are games we are going to win.”
Offense is definitely a key part of the game and J.P. Stevens is going to look for it from players like team captain and senior Collin Pastor and sophomore catcher Luke Jacobi.
“There is no better feeling than being a sophomore on varsity and playing a key role,” Luke Jacobi said.
Jacobi and Pastor are both coming off of seasons where they were two of the team’s best hitters and they are going to have to do that again. J.P. Stevens also need other players like Zach Marzano and Frank LoGuidice to continue improving and strengthening the middle of the line-up.
“I feel that everyone has put in the necessary and hard work that will bring us a county and state championship,” Collin Pastor said. “I can see with my own eyes all hard work and improvements.”
The expectations are nothing short of a county championship and go as high as a state championship. The Hawks first game is against St. Joes, which is where they will start their quest for states.
Ben Mandell, a junior at J.P. Stevens High School, is participating in the journalism program with TAP into Edison.