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Manalapan's high-scoring offense helped the Braves take down the Shore's No. 1 baseball team, and Toms River North and St. Rose each picked up crucial divisional victories to highlight Monday's action.

The Braves outslugged top-ranked Christian Brothers Academy 11-9 to trim the Colts' lead to one game over second-place Marlboro in the Class A North race. Manalapan entered the week having scored more runs than any team in the Shore Conference, and they kept it rolling with a win that was keyed by an eight-run sixth inning featuring big hits by Chris Rodriguez, Stephen Hansen and Jake Sadowitz.

Photo gallery by Ray Richardson: Toms River North 8, Toms River South 3

Toms River North knocked off rival Toms River South 8-3 under the lights to get another step closer to the Class A South title, as the Mariners have a two-game lead on Jackson Memorial with five divisional games left. Meanwhile, St. Rose put itself right back in the picture to repeat as Class B Central champions by avenging an earlier loss to Point Beach with an 8-3 win for its 10th straight victory. The Purple Roses are now tied for first place in the loss column with Mater Dei Prep, which makes their game on May 5 a big one. The Seraphs also have a tough game tomorrow against Point Beach in the division.

Those performances and more are part of Monday's Top 10 performers.

Ryan Larsen, Sr., P, Toms River North

(Photo by Ray Richardson)

Larsen helped the Mariners sweep the season series from rival Toms River South with a huge all-around game as he smacked a home run and a double while driving in five runs, and he also struck out 10 in a complete-game win on the mound in the 8-3 victory. The senior trio of Larsen, Brett Hyers and Doug Molnar has given the Mariners' a formidable starting staff as you will see in the Shore.

Chris Rodriguez, Jr., SS, Manalapan

The Braves standout helped lead the attack in the upset of CBA with a two-run triple that was part of a 3-for-5 performance in which he drove in three runs in an 11-9 win.

Jeremy Dyzenhaus, Jr., P, Marlboro

(Photo by Matt Manley)

Greg Maddux was smiling somewhere as Dyzenhaus needed only 63 pitches to throw a complete-game, four-hit shutout in a 4-0 win over Middletown North that kept the Mustangs right on CBA's tail in the Class A North race. He trusted his fielders and pitched to contact for one of the most efficient complete games of any Shore starter this season, striking out two and walking none.

Henry Sillen, Jr., A, Rumson-Fair Haven

Sillen scored two goals, including the game-winner with 32 seconds left, as the Bulldogs pulled out a four-overtime thriller in a 6-5 nonconference win over Princeton.

Nick Cottone, Sr., P, Toms River East

Cottone kept the Raiders in a game they eventually pulled out 2-1 in nine innings over Lacey by only allowing one run in seven innings, striking out five and walking four.

Ralph Gambino, So., P, Freehold Township

Gambino struck out eight and walked two while firing a four-hit shutout in a 3-0 win over rival Freehold Boro. Gambino has now only allowed one earned run in his last 20 1/3 innings.

Kyle Boyle, Sr., LSM, St. John Vianney

Boyle led a strong defensive effort and had 10 groundballs to help the Lancers surprise an eight-win Wall team with an 8-2 victory in Class B North.

J.P. Traynor, So., SS, St. Rose

Traynor was one of five St. Rose players to register two hits in a big 8-3 win over Point Beach in Class B Central, hitting an RBI single and an RBI double while also making a great play in the field on a groundball up the middle in the fourth that prevented the potential go-ahead run from scoring.

Blake Demeter, Sr., P, Ocean

Demeter threw a complete-game five-hitter and struck out 13 in a 6-1 nondivisional win over Rumson-Fair Haven.

Matt Crispe, Sr., OF, Jackson Memorial

The Jaguars rattled off their seventh straight victory by beating Howell 7-2 in a nondivisional game as Crispe went 2-for-4 with a home run and four RBI to help lead the way.


Len Zdanowicz, a former Brick player and assistant coach under the legendary Warren Wolf, is up for Board of Education approval as the Green Dragons' new football coach at the Brick BOE meeting on Thursday night.

Zdanowicz was the one whose name immediately popped up when Rob Dahl stepped down earlier this month, as he was a finalist for the job the last time it was open before Dahl was approved. Zdanowicz, who was Lakewood's offensive coordinator last season and also is currently Brick's boys lacrosse head coach, will fill the last head coaching vacancy left in the Shore during this offseason.

More on Tuesday: 

On tap for today: Today's baseball schedule is headlined by a Top 10 showdown in Class A North between No. 5 Marlboro and a red-hot No. 6 Middletown South team that has won nine of 10, and a clash for sole possession of first place in Class B South between Jackson Liberty and Donovan Catholic.

No. 10 St. John Vianney also travels to Manasquan for an important Class A Central game, and Wall heads to No. 9 Ocean in Class B North.

It's a light day in lacrosse with only three games, including No. 9 Barnegat against Jackson Liberty in Class B South.

I'll end with former Jackson Memorial star Matt Thaiss earning ACC Player of the Week honors for the University of Virginia, St. Rose's Brendan Hueth bombing a double to the fence in the win over Point Beach, and the cast of the greatest movie of all time looking back on its 25th anniversary.