SPRINGFIELD, NJ - After a 7-16 season a year ago and having lost the Union County Conference-Mountain Division title after a four-year reign, Dayton baseball is back with a new attitude, new energy, and a new division.

Dayton, a 12 seed, saw last season end with a 9-6 loss to fifth-seeded North Arlington in the first round of the NJSIAA North Jersey, Section 2, Group 1 tournament on May 23rd.

The Bulldogs dropped three straight and five of its last seven games to end its 2016 campaign.

Sign Up for E-News

“Last year, we stopped our four-year reign as Union County Conference-Mountain Division champs, which was a nice run considering we were the only Group 1 school in that division for a number of years,” said Dayton head coach Michael Abbate. “We had lots of injuries and a schedule that had a lot of Group 3 and 4 schools, which made it a tough combination for us. We lost 10 games last season by two runs or less, so we had some tough breaks along the way.”

Returning senior starting pitchers Matthew Pavick and Joe Kastner, will be both impact players on both sides of the field for the Bulldogs.

Four other seniors: infielder/outfielder Anthony Monguso, catcher Brian Schramm, and outfielders Jon Holland and James Patania are each looking to make significant impacts as Dayton moves into the UCC/Valley Division this season.

“We lost Noah Goldberg, Adam Paolella, and Jake Elgrably last year due to graduation. Each of those guys were two-year starters for us and hit over .350 for us at the plate,” Abbate said.

A talented junior group of players all received some varsity experience last season as sophomores and should contribute as well as the Bulldogs open its regular season at rival Brearley in Kenilworth on Saturday, April 1 with first pitch scheduled for 12 p.m.

Dayton returns to Ruby Field on Tuesday, April 4 for its home opener versus Roselle Catholic (4 p.m.) and follows with another home contest versus Roselle Park on Thursday, April 6, also at 4 p.m.

Dayton 2017 Varsity Baseball Roster

Seniors (6): Jonathan Holland (OF/PR), Joe Kastner (P/INF), Anthony Monguso (INF/OF), James Patania (INF/PR), Matthew Pavick (P/INF), Brian Schramm (C/PH).

Juniors (8): Jeffrey Carrier (3B/DH), Bryce Forys (CF/2B), William Hodic (SS/P), Ryan          Lashuk (1B/P), Jack Quinn (C/3B), Anthony Santucci (INF/P), Even Weinberg (1B/P), Adam          Wuest (INF/PR).