Baseball – Barnegat’s Jared Kacso Commits to NJIT
Barnegat senior third baseman Jared Kacso made a non-binding oral commitment to continue his baseball career at the New Jersey Institute of Technology Sunday, according to his father and Barnegat Athletic Director John Germano.
Kacso is a four-year varsity player and a three-year starter for the Bengals and during those years, Barnegat has gone 43-35 - including 35-21 over the last two seasons. During his sophomore and junior seasons, Kacso contributed both at the plate and on the mound. He hit .342 with seven doubles last season and .333 with five doubles, a triple and three home runs as a sophomore in 2014.
Groome joins a host of past Shore Conference players to play for the Highlanders, including former Toms River North standout right-hander Mark Leiter, who finished this season at Double-A Reading in the Philadelpia Phillies organization. Sophomores Justin Chin and Evan Pietronico were both key seniors on St. John Vianney's NJSIAA Non-Public A championship team in 2014, while fellow sophomore James Sofield was a rival of Kacso in Class B South as a shortstop and pitcher at Jackson Liberty. Toms River South alumni Spencer Kapp will join the trio as a freshman this season.
This season, Kacso returns as part of a Barnegat team that will enter with sky-high expectations thanks, in large part, to the return of senior left-hander and Vanderbilt recruit Jason Groome. After playing at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. for his junior season in the spring of 2015, Groome returned to Barnegat High School in September and will pitch in the spring as the top high school player in the country according to multiple online publications, including Perfect Game.
As sophomores, Kacso and Groome helped lead the Bengals to 20 wins and the finals of the Ocean County, Shore Conference and NJSIAA South Jersey Group II Tournaments, but the Bengals came up short in all three. Kacso pitched the Ocean County Tournament final against Central Regional and Barnegat lost a 1-0 heartbreaker to Buena in the South Jersey Group III final despite a 17-strikeout performance by Groome.