RANDOLPH TWP. — Hosting powerful Seton Hall Prep under the lights Saturday night in a non-conference baseball game, Randolph High School gave the visitors everything they could want and more before falling 5-4 in 15 innings.
With the loss, the Rams continued their slow start as they fell to 2-5 for the season. Competitive in all their games except when things got out of hand late twice, poor defense has been partially responsible with five miscues coming against Seton Hall, which improved to 7-1 with the decision.
Despite the early struggles for the perennial county power, head Coach Ryan Casey can see the light at the end of the tunnel, believing that in defeat to Seton Hall his inexperienced club gained some maturity.
“Considering the way the season has started, that was a great confidence-booster for us,” he said. “I thought we played pretty well. It would have been even better to come away with the victory, but there are a lot of positives to take from that game.
“I believe we’re going to turn this around pretty soon. I think we have a lot more ability than we’ve shown, but we just haven’t been playing very well. We’ve been making some errors, and that’s causing our pitchers to throw more pitches than they should have to.”
Pitching proved to be on display for Randolph Saturday night with Mike Lansing, Daren Sorgi and Matt Vicaro all turning in strong performances. Vicaro took the loss, but was outstanding in six innings of relief as he allowed one run on three hits while striking out four and walking two.
Lansing started and went four innings, scattering six hits and yielding four runs, but only one of them was earned, while he recorded five strikeouts and one walk. Sorgi delivered the top performance with five hitless innings in which he gave up on unearned run, struck out six and issued two walks.
“All of those guys pitched very well,” Casey said. “They needed to gain some confidence early, and against a team like Seton Hall it should really help them. I thought it was a great game for all three of them. It was a long night, but they pitched very well.”
Connor McMahon had the big game at the plate as he collected four hits, including two triples. McMahon tripled in a run and scored on a double by Thomas Asbaty in the fifth inning when the Rams tied the game at 4-4.
Matt Iantosca, who walked three times, delivered a two-run single to give Randolph the lead after an inning. Asbaty and Brian Boulineau each chipped in with two hits.
West Morris 14, Randolph 6 – After continuing to battle from behind to keep the game close, the Rams had no final response after West Morris scored five times in the top of the sixth inning as they fell in North Jersey Athletic Conference National Division play Friday.
The Wolfpack, which improved to 6-1, took advantage of some Rams mistakes to score in each of its first six at-bats as the visitors built leads of 1-0, 2-1, 5-1, 8-3 and 9-3 before pulling away in the sixth inning after Randolph scored three times in the fifth to slice the deficit to 9-6.
Asbaty highlighted the Rams’ fifth inning with a two-run double and finished with two hits, three RBI and two stolen bases, while McMahon went 3-for-4 with a double. Kevin Mancuso doubled and singled, Iantosco doubled in a run and Andrew Conklin singled and scored twice.
McMahon got the start on the mound but lasted just four and third innings as his defense let him down. McMahon allowed nine runs – only two of which were earned – on 10 hits while striking out four and walking three.
Randolph 5, Morristown 3 – Jake Scherzer picked up his and the Rams’ second win of the season with six and third innings of work as Randolph held off Morristown (2-3) in the seventh inning to claim the National Division decision April 11.
Scherzer scattered eight hits and gave up two runs while striking out four and walking two. Vicaro got out of the jam in the seventh after surrendering a run of his own by getting the final two outs for the save.
McMahon finished 3-for-3 with an RBI single in the fifth inning and a two-run single in the sixth for a 5-1 advantage. Asbaty and Iantosca contributed sacrifice flies, while Adam Vasciano doubled, singled and score a run.
North Hunterdon 17, Randolph 6 – After scoring four runs in the top of the fourth inning to take a 5-3 lead, the Rams watched as North Hunterdon (1-3) scored 14 runs – seven coming in the fifth — in the next three innings to roll to the non-conference victory April 9.
Connor Damiano highlighted the fourth inning with a three-run homer, while McMahon, who went 2-for-3 with a double, and Conklin produced RBI singles.