MONTVILLE, NJ - The Montville Mustangs fell short in their bid for a comeback victory against the Paramus Catholic Paladins last Thursday afternoon, falling 3-5 at Montville High School.
The Paladins were backed by 6 strong innings from pitcher Matt Goehrig who gave up only 3 earned runs in 7 innings of work. On the offensive side, the 7, 8, and 9 hitters in the lineup, Andrew Sangarino, Zachary Landi and Calvin Niland respectively, had 5 RBI’s combined. However, 6 fielding errors by Montville also contributed to the 5 runs Paramus Catholic scored.
After the game, Montville Head Coach Joe Cardinale reacted to the team's errors, “We made six physical errors and a bunch of other mental errors, it’s tough to win a game that way and it puts a lot of pressure on your team to come back from that and not a lot of teams can.”
The game started off well for the Mustangs. Pitcher Joe Trifari had a 6 pitch 1-2-3 inning in the top of the first and Jon Cocchio pulled through with an RBI ground out in the bottom half of the inning. However, things quickly went south for Montville after an error, single, and walk loaded the bases. Paramus Catholic ended up scoring 4 runs in the top of the second, a 2 run double by Niland landing the largest blow.
In the top of the third, Cardinale replaced Trifari with Mike Trezza and things went as planned. Trezza pitched 2 scoreless innings with a strikeout to keep Montville in the game.
“Trezza looked good on the mound, Trezza competes," Cardinale said. "He’s a multi sport athlete which we love and he just competes. That’s half the battle when it comes to baseball is having the guts to compete, and he has it."
The bottom of the third brought the momentum back to the Mustangs after RBI singles by Cocchio and Erik Katterman cut the deficit to one.
In the top of the fifth, however, the Paladins struck again when Landi hit an RBI single off of Matt Fusella, extending the Paladins’ lead to 5-3. Fortunately for Montville, Cocchio stepped up in the sixth and seventh with 2 scoreless innings of ball, even picking off a runner at first base to keep the Mustangs in the game.
Unfortunately for the Mustangs, Goehrig never faltered after a shaky third inning, pitching 4 scoreless innings to finish off the game.
The Mustangs (3-5) will face off next against Chatham (2-7) on Wednesday, April 20 and Mahwah (8-0) on Thursday, April 21 in Montville.