BRIDGEWATER, NJ - The Wood-Ridge baseball team’s run in the Last Dance World Series Tournament came to an end on Tuesday afternoon, with a 12-0 defeat at the hands of Delbarton. Delbarton was the non-public Group A champion in 2019, and rated the number 1 team in the state by NJ.com at the end of the year.
Delbarton jumped out in the top of the first inning, as leadoff hitter Liam Coicorail tripled to the left-centerfield wall off Wood-Ridge starting pitcher Liam Winslow. After a pop-out to short right field, Aiden Kane (who is headed to play at the University of Delaware in the fall) grounded to Leo Giancaspro, scoring Cocorail for a 1-0 lead for Delbarton.
It was the first run that Wood-RIdge allowed in the Last Dance Tournament, following three shutouts in the opening round. Winslow induced a groundout for the final out of the inning.
After Delbarton pitcher Matt Carey turned in his second 1-2-3 inning in the second, the Tidal Wave ran themselves out of the bottom of the second inning, when Michael Sarlo caught Jason Strollo attempting to steal for the first out. Following Walter Sadowski’s single, Winslow picked Sadowski off first base for the second out before picking up the third out of the inning on a fly ball to Nick Marchitelli.
Delbarton chased Winslow in the third, scoring three runs on three hits and a walk, bringing in Trey Packen to pick up the final out of the inning.
Packen singled for Wood-Ridge’s first hit of the game in leading off the first. Following Sarlo reaching via a hit-by-pitch, Delbarton escaped any damage when Nick Rizos grounded into a double play and Phil Giancaspro grounded out to second.
Delbarton busted open the game in the fourth, with an eight run inning, chasing Packen and roughing up Stephen Crandall and Kevin Ferguson in relief.
"Against a team like Delbarton, you can't make any mistakes, and you have to limit the amount of free passes," said Wood-Ridge Coach Mike Carcich. "We knew this was a David and Goliath, so I had planned to have a short leash on pitchers to try to break up the hitters' timing. Our strong point coming into this game was our pitching and defense, and today it got away from us. We walked too many batters, fell behind in too many counts, and a good hitting team will make you pay, which they did, especially in the fourth inning."
Despite the loss on Tuesday, Carcich saw the tournament as a positive towards the development of the 2021.
"Since we lost the entire spring, our goal in our summer program was to give these younger kids experience against varsity pitching in a varsity game," Carcich stated. "We had some inter-squads to allow for kids to get back on the field and develop fundamentals. We scheduled some independents for competition and for kids to fight for positions for the Last Dance tournament. We treated the Last Dance as our mini-season, and were playing to win. We hosted, went 3-0 and won our region versus St Mary's. Knowing we can play with anyone in our a league is probably one of the most important things the kids came away with. Playing on the stage today versus Delbarton, will help us during county and state tournament time."
A key for Wood-Ridge in the Last Dance tournament was Winslow, the lone senior to play for Wood-Ridge.
"Liam didn't have to play in the Last Dance," Carcich said. "But he chose to anyway, as our lone senior. He was our leader from the moment our summer program began. It's so beneficial to have seniors set the tone for the underclassmen in the spring, and in this case, the summer. It was especially nice for Liam to play with his teammates, one last time, on our home field. The fact that we beat Mary's and won the regional final is the best present we could have given Liam as a program."
|HBP: Mike Sarlo|
|GIDP: Nick Rizos|
|PIK: Nick Marchitelli|
|Team LOB: 2 Fielding E: Mike Sarlo
Batting2B: Kyle Vinci 2
|3B: Liam Coicorail, Aiden Kane, Nick Mclaughlin|
|SAC: Nick Mclaughlin|
|HBP: Willie Schwaick|
|SB: Liam Coicorail, Jason Strollo|
|CS: Jason Strollo|
|PIK: Walter Sadowski|
|Team LOB: 2
PitchingHBP: Trey Packen
|WP: Trey Packen, Kevin Ferguson|
Pitching W: Matt Carey
|HBP: Matt Carey|
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