MORRISTOWN—The outcome of Monday afternoon’s state baseball tournament opener between Morristown and Morris Knolls did not take long to be decided.
Blitzing Knolls with six runs in the home half of the first, the Colonials rolled to an 8-2 victory in the opening round of the NJSIAA North 1, Group 4 tournament to extend their season three more days. Morristown, now 13-8 on the season, hosts Passaic on Thursday in the quarterfinals at Harter Road.
Jimmy Nodoro got the scoring barrage going for Morristown with a multiple RBI hit to instantly put Morristown ahead 2-0. David Haberman also had a big day play at the plate for the Colonials, plating three baserunners and doubling in the fifth.
Morristown used three pitchers—including its regulars Matt Lopez and Brennan O’Neill—in this game to preserve each of their top arms for use on Thursday. Lopez earned his 6th win of the year with today's win.
Matt Bangfrede had 2 RBI's for the Golden Eagles.
State tournament relations between Morristown and Passaic in scholastic athletics trace all the way back to 1925, albeit under contentious conditions.
The New Jersey state baseball tournament did not exist until 1959, but the Morristown basketball “Marvel Five” that ran the regular season table at 23-0 in ’24-25 was scheduled to play the Passaic juggernaut of the early 20th century in the Group 4 tournament.
However, when the NJSIAA scheduled the neutral court as the Paterson Armory—where Passaic had played three times in the season—Morristown declined participation in the tournament, which many pundits of the time felt was a way for the Colonials to preserve that undefeated mark.
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