MONTVILLE, NJ - The Montville High School baseball team fought the elements and kept motivated through a long game to come out on top against Morris Hills, 11-6, on Tuesday.
Morris Hills came out strong scoring four runs in the first inning and held on to that lead until the third when Montville's Brock Caudill hit a double deep down the right field line scoring two runners. After that, consecutive sac flies by Jon Cocchio and Anthony Trifari brought in two more runs to tie the ballgame at the end of the third inning, 4-4.
The bats in the fourth and fifth innings were busy but defense was tough keeping each team to only one run per inning.
"The big play, in my mind, involved the non stop hustle of Anthony Bio who scored from second base on a ground ball to second and Brett Kelly who beat out that ground ball to second to give us the lead in the sixth inning," Montville Coach Joe Cardinale said.
With 2 outs in the bottom of the sixth, Kelly hit that RBI infield single to second putting Montville ahead for the first time all game and they never looked back, scoring a total of 5 runs in the sixth inning.
"We've really been battling adversity in all of our first four games, but this team really has the resilience, heart, and character to win games that a lot of other teams may lose," Coach Cardinale said. "Our boys do a tremendous job of staying focused on what's directly in front of them, and just trying to win one pitch at a time. I thought that we did a great job of this particularly in the 3rd (4 runs) and 6th (5 runs) innings but seeing a lot of pitches and grinding out at bats."
Cardinale commented that Armani Zangari (2-0) did "a tremendous job" in relief, keeping Morris Hills to 1 run in 3 innings which allowed Montville to comeback and extend their lead. Caudill also had "a great game," going 4 for 4 with 4 RBIs to pace the Mustang's offensive attack.
Looking ahead, Cardinale said, "I'm extremely excited about our offensive approach and ability to have quality at bats. I also like the way we are able to use our base running to score runs which takes some pressure off our hitters." Cardinale continued, "I'm also very excited about the room for growth we have as a pitching staff. While we've been hurt mainly by big innings to this point, we have the ability to throw strikes more consistently than we have been. If we can do that as a staff, I like our chances to be in a lot of ball games."
Montville's (4-0) next home game is against Waldwick at 7 p.m. on Saturday, April 11. This game is a charity event to raise money for the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) Veteran's Family Relief Fund (read about the charity event HERE).