NORTH BRUNSWICK -- If you like offense, then you would have enjoyed the South Plainfield High School varsity baseball team’s 19-16 thrilling upset victory over Millburn, No. 14 in the NJ.com Top 20, in an Autism Awareness Challenge game at North Brunswick Community Park on Saturday. Tristan McGuire from South Plainfield was on hand to throw out the first pitch.
Both teams combined for 37 hits as South Plainfield tallied 16 and Millburn had 21.
South Plainfield’s Chris Shine and Mike Stanczak smacked two home runs apiece. Stanzack finished 3-for-4 with seven RBI and three runs scored while Shine went 3-for-4 with five RBI and four runs scored. Mike Marrero added another two hits in four tries with three runs while Chris Born mustered two hits as well.
Peter Serruto and Ben Sinins both hit homers as well for Millburn, as the long ball was a big factor in the contest. Serruto went 2-for-4 and drove in four runs while Sinins had just the one hit and two RBI. Ben Pampush and Jordan Brochin each had five-hit days. Pampush also had five RBI and two runs scored while Brochin drove in two and scored three times. Nick Santagata also went 3-for-5 with an RBI and three runs scored.
The Tigers took an early 3-0 lead in the top of the first inning with the help of Shine, who blasted a two-run homer. Millburn responded however with three runs of its own in the bottom half of the frame as Sinis hit a two-run home run of his own.
Then, in the third, Shine connected on his second home run of the afternoon, this time of the three-run variety, as the Tigers scored four to go up 7-3. The Millers would plate a run in the fourth to make 7-4.
Stanczak kept the show rolling with a three-run homer in the fifth and sixth innings. South Plainfield scored six runs in each innings.
Millburn scored three in the fifth and four in the sixth to keep pace. South Plainfield led 19-11 after six. The Tigers didn’t score in the top of the seventh, and because the game was going how it was going, it wasn’t over even though the Millers had just three outs left to score at least eight runs.
Millburn scored five in its chance to tie the game in the bottom of the seventh. Serruto hit his two-run home run in the frame.
With the win, South Plainfield improved to 5-7 while Millburn fell to 6-4.
The Tigers will look to keep the bats hot when they travel to and face neighboring Piscataway at 4:00 p.m. on Monday at Columbus Park.