Future looks bright for O.B. baseball program

Future looks bright for O.B. baseball program

Don’t expect a drop-off in the level of success for the Old Bridge High School baseball team over the next couple of years.

It looks like there’s a new crop of players on their way up to help reload what is already a budding program.

Old Bridge High School’s junior varsity baseball team bounced back from a 4-6-1 start this spring, ending the season with a nine-game winning streak and the Greater Middlesex Conference (GMC) championship.

The Knights entered the GMC tourney seeded 10th and were paired against seventh-seeded South Plainfield in the opening round. Old Bridge prevailed, 9-1. Next up was Spotswood, the number two seed, and again the Knights were victorious, 8-6.

Tom Walsh, who was the winning pitcher against South Plainfield, then tossed a 4-0 shutout against Colonia in the semifinal game. In the finale, coach Matt Gregorin’s team edged J.P. Steven in a 14-13 slugfest, with Walsh coming in for the final inning to save the game for winner Greg Bruno.

Steve Cooper, who led the Knights with a .452 average and 19 RBIs, belted 12 hits and drove home seven runs during the tournament to pace the offense.

Other key players include Andrew Young, a .412 hitter; Matt Donaghue, who hit .400 with 14 RBIs; Walsh, who batted .380; Scott Bird, a .354 hitter; Anthony Angorano, who averaged .300 with 14 ribbys; Carmine Defeo, .314 with 10 RBIs; and Pat Cimino, who batted .276 and drove in 14 runners; Sean Langan, a .256 batter; and Mike Vandervalk, a .245 hitter who contributed 10 RBIs.

Walsh topped the pitching staff with a 4-2-1 mark to go with a 2.25 ERA and 39 strikeouts in 40 innings of work. Bruno went 3-0, Young, who won the Spotswood game, and Angorano were both 2-1, and Andy Tortu went 1-1.

Other members of the team include Bobby Behan, James Conway, Andres Ferreiro, Nick Giovine, and Teddy Venezia.

– Warren Rappleyea