Glou. Catholic Back on Top in Baseball

Glou. Catholic Back on Top in Baseball Gloucester Catholic Back on Top in South Jersey Baseball

During the preseason, Gloucester Catholic was considered the top South Jersey baseball team. The Rams then dropped from the top with some losses to non-South Jersey squads, but are back there after beating St. Augustine, 1-0 on Sunday. That game was significant because these two powers could be meeting again in the South Jersey Non-Public playoffs.

St. Augustine briefly occupied the top spot, but the Hermits then went into a slump, losing to Cape Atlantic teams Ocean City, 5-1 and later to Mainland, 3-1 and Absegami, 5-0.

While these are quality teams, a squad can’t lose to them and expect to be in the running for the top spot.

That is why it wasn’t surprising that the Hermits dropped out of the rankings.

Yet, the loss to Gloucester Catholic showed that St. Augustine can play with anybody.

Consider that Gloucester Catholic’s winning pitcher was righthander John Murphy, a University of Maryland recruit who we spotlighted last week. Murphy is certainly in the running for South Jersey pitcher of the year.

Mike Vasturia who, like Murphy, has committed to the University of Maryland, pitched a complete game for St. Augustine.

For any pitcher to hold the potent Gloucester Catholic lineup to one run, shows that he can compete with any team in the state.

So if Vasturia can continue that type of pitching performance and the Hermits can find their offense, they could be a factor in the postseason.

There should be other teams that will vie for the No. 1 spot in South Jersey.

The Philadelphia Inquirer has Northern Burlington No. 2.

The Greyhounds won a 17-0 decision on Monday over defending state Group 2 champion Buena.

While that was an impressive showing, one in which they played defending state Group 2 champion Buena on Monday.

Ryan Shinn, NBC’s Florida Gulf Coast recruit, went 4 for 4 and had two home runs and six RBIs. Yet one shouldn’t put too much stock in this.

Yes, Buena is a viable Group 2 contender once again, but there is always a danger in looking at results of non-league games, simply because of pitching.

The reason the Gloucester Catholic-St. Augustine non-league game was so significant is that both teams used top-flight pitchers.

Buena obviously didn’t. Dennis Brady, one of the best in the state and an East Carolina recruit, will be pitching many of the big playoff games for Buena. And with him on the mound, the Chiefs can be competitive with anybody.

This is not to take anything away from Northern Burlco.

The Greyhounds will compete in Central Jersey Group III and be a major contender. NBC will no doubt get to compete in the Joe Hartmann Diamond Classic, which invites 16 of South Jersey’s best teams in a single-elimination tournament.

So the Greyhounds will be heard from, but for now, Gloucester Catholic has regained the top spot. As we continue to monitor this race for No. 1 in South Jersey, don’t look for the Rams to give up this position very easily. © SouthJersey.com 2015. All rights reserved. This article or parts thereof may not be reprinted or reproduced by any other party without the express written consent of SouthJersey.com. For more information, please call 856-797-9910.

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Author: Marc Narducci

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