Baseball – VOTE: Week 6 and 7 Player and Pitcher of the Week
With rain wiping out the vast majority of the seventh week of the season and the sixth week consisting of mostly non-divisional games, the sixth Orthopaedic Institute of Central Jersey Player and Pitcher of the Week Vote will combine Week Six and what little of Week 7 was actually played.
Check out the top performers between May 7 and May 20 and vote for the player and pitcher you think had the best run. Vote early and often until the poll closes at 10 p.m. on Thursday night.
Class A North Player of the Week
Eddie Morales, Howell
Howell got a new lease on life with its double-header win over Middletown South and Rumson-Fair Haven on May 10 and Morales was the man on that evening in Middletown. In the win over Rumson, Morales hit a go-ahead RBI triple in the sixth inning and broke a 7-7 tie in the eighth with a two-run double, finishing the game 3-for-5 with a double, two triples and five RBI. Over the last two weeks, Morales hit .476 with two doubles, two triples, seven runs scored and those five RBI in six games.
Class A North Pitcher of the Week
Mike Wynne, Howell
Howell takes both A North awards this week thanks to their successful climb into the postseason. While the offense has been the Rebels’ calling card, they have also gotten a few big pitching performances, including from Wynne in each of his last two outings. He pitched five innings to pick up the win over Middletown South, then threw five shutout innings with two hits and eight strikeouts in a 13-0 win over St. John Vianney in the Shore Conference Tournament opening round.
A North Honorable Mention: Nick Ruszczyk, Howell; Connor Baksch, CBA; Jack Harnisch, CBA; Mark Costanzo, Freehold Boro; Giovanni Ciaccio, Manalapan; Rob Gargano, Manalapan; Jake Pellecchia, Manalapan; Justin Korman, Manalapan; Brian Young, Neptune; Justin Levito, Marlboro
Class A Central Player of the Week
Christian Bauman, Shore
Class A Central Pitcher of the Week
The Blue Devils freshman tore it up over a three-game stretch, going 7-for-11 with a double, six RBI and six runs scored in three Shore wins over Holmdel, Long Branch and Manville. He went 3-for-3 in the win over Manville and was 2-for-4 with a double and four RBI in the 6-5 win over Long Branch.
John Pizzaia, Raritan
In his first varsity start, Pizzaia fired a six-hit shutout in a 5-0 win over Carteret. Pizzaia struck out seven and did not issue a walk in the 5-0 Raritan win.
A Central Honorable Mention: Ezra Caspi, Holmdel; Jason Lyons, Holmdel; Michael Eulner, Red Bank; Griffin Falco, Matawan; Robby Smith, Rumson-Fair Haven; Dan Harby, Rumson-Fair Haven; Alex Burnett, Rumson-Fair Haven; Luciano Fabrizzi, St. John Vianney; Christian Bauman, Shore; Mike Deusch, Shore; Tommy Dunleavy, Shore; Logan Marter, St. John Vianney
Class A South Player of the Week
Colin Mackle, Toms River South
Toms River South had to scramble to get into the Shore Conference Tournament and got there thanks to a Herculean effort by Mackle. The junior went 6-for-12 with a double and two triples at the plate in four games and also pitched a three-hit shutout with seven strikeouts in a 3-0 win over Trenton Catholic that officially clinched an SCT berth for the Indians.
Class A South Pitcher of the Week
Jared Bellissimo, Toms River North
The Player and Pitcher of the Week in A South are basically interchangeable as each one stood out on the mound and at the plate. Bellissimo’s only start over the two-week stretch was a big one: he allowed one earned run on five hits with nine strikeouts and two walks in a complete-game win over Jackson Memorial in the Ocean County Tournament semifinals. In the Mariners’ six games during that same stretch, he also hit .500 (11-for-22) with three doubles and six RBI.
A South Honorable Mention: Trevor Sherman, Brick Memorial; T.J. Rosace, Brick Memorial; Mike Sullivan, Brick Memorial; John Coppola, Brick; Tom Ruscitti, Central; Ryan Galati, Central; Matt Potok, Jackson Memorial; Alex Iadisernia, Jackson Memorial; Tom Pellone, Jackson Memorial; Brad Brush, Toms River East; Nick DeGennaro, Toms River East; Craig Larsen, Toms River North; Sam Angelo, Toms River North; Marcos Matias, Southern; Andrew Luongo, Southern; T.J. Scuderi, Toms River South; Nico Gonnella, Toms River South
Class B North Player of the Week
Ryan Toomey, Ocean
Ocean picked up a huge win over Monmouth to start the final week before the postseason cutoffs and Toomey was the offensive leader, going 5-for-6 with a double and six RBI in the 17-11 slugfest. He also went 2-for-4 in a 9-0 win over Brick Memorial on the Monday after the cutoff, which Ocean missed after losing Neptune and getting rained out of a potential game against St. John Vianney on Saturday.
Class B North Pitcher of the Week
Blaise Panzini, Red Bank Catholic
In each of his last two starts, Panzini turned in arguably the best start of his career. In the Monmouth County Tournament final, he struck out a career-high nine over five innings to beat St. Rose, 5-1. He then topped that outing with a five-inning no-hitter against Barnegat, finishing just a walk and a pair of RBC errors shy of a perfect game. Panzini struck out six in the no-hit gem.
B North Honorable Mention: Joe Sprake, Middletown South; Dylan Walling, Middletown South; Matt Mincieli, Long Branch; Nick Luhn, Long Branch; Kevin Schoenberg, Ocean; Ethan Thompson, Manasquan; Brian Quinn, Middletown North; Charlie Kelly, Monmouth, Mike Faletti, Monmouth; Ricky Voss, Monmouth; Justin Scotto, Monmouth; Blaise Panzini, Red Bank Catholic; David Glancy, Red Bank Catholic; Andy Lenneper, Wall; Grant Shulman, Wall
Class B Central Player of the Week
Liam Meyer, Keansburg
Keansburg’s 6-4 win over St. Rose required a total team effort, but if any one player deserves the credit above all others, it would have to be the guy that delivered both at the plate and on the mound. Meyer pitched six strong innings before turning the ball over to Paul Eckleberry for the seventh and also went 1-for-3 with an RBI. He also threw a no-hitter with no walks and nine strikeouts against Calvary Christian on May 10 and was 4-for-13 with a triple, five runs and three RBI four games during the two week stretch.
Class B Central Pitcher of the Week
Chris Russo, Point Beach
In two starts over the last two weeks, Russo picked up two huge wins for Point Beach. He pitched 5 2/3 shutout innings with five strikeouts in a 1-0 win over Mater Dei on May 9, a win that clinched the Class B Central public division title for the Garnet Gulls. He later surrendered just one run over six innings in a 3-1 upset of ninth-seeded Raritan in the Shore Conference Tournament this past Sunday.
B Central Honorable Mention: Jarred Chathaunt, Asbury Park; Miguel Diaz, Asbury Park; Justin Alessi, Keansburg; Liam Riecks, Keansburg; Phil Antoniotti, Point Beach; John Nista, Point Beach; Mike Mohr, Henry Hudson; Josh Winters, Henry Hudson; Thomas Olausen, Mater Dei; Patrick Mastro, Mater Dei; Charles Chropuvka, Ranney; Cole Redman, Ranney; Riley Maypother, St. Rose; John Crowley, St. Rose; Nick Marini, St. Rose
Class B South Player of the Week
David Melfi, Jackson Liberty
Melfi is in the midst of a hitting spree that continue with a game-winning home run in Jackson Liberty’s NJSIAA Central Jersey Group III opener on Monday. Even before that, though, Melfi went off over the previous two weeks. Over a four-game stretch, he went 7-for-14 with two doubles, a triple, three home runs and 10 RBI. With six of his seven hits going for extra bases, his slugging percentage over those 14 at-bats came out to a robust 1.429.
Class B South Pitcher of the Week
Nick DeCarlo, Jackson Liberty
DeCarlo has become Jackson Liberty’s most versatile weapon on the mound, as the junior right-hander has served as both a starter and a reliever for coach Jim Rankin. During the two-week stretch in question, DeCarlo made two relief appearances against Donovan Catholic and Toms River East and racked up 5 1/3 scoreless innings with two hits, one walk and nine strikeouts. He struck out five in 3 1/3 scoreless against Toms River East in the OCT semifinals to keep Jackson Liberty in the game before the Lions ultimately fell, 7-2.
B South Honorable Mention: Derek Schmidt, Manchester; Jack Felipe, Manchester; Nick Guzzi, Point Boro; Paul Franceschini, Point Boro; Christian Aurin, Point Boro; Andrew Laspina, Point Boro; Sam Collins, Point Boro; Jorden Jurkiewicz, Lacey; James Roselli, Lacey; Miles Feaster, Lacey; Sawyer Conrad, Donovan Catholic; Bill Crawford, Pinelands; Alex Torres, Jackson Liberty; Tim Duffy, Jackson Liberty