Who: No. 5 Rutgers Prep (15-11) vs. No. 2 Moorestown Friends (17-4)
Where/When: Rowan University, today, 4 p.m.
How they got here: Rutgers Prep defeated Wildwood Catholic 16-1, Mater Dei 6-5 and Roselle Catholic 17-9; Moorestown Friends defeated Marist 3-2 (9 innings), Sacred Heart (Vineland) 3-0.
Moorestown Friends report: Last season was the first for the Foxes in an NJSIAA tournament and they have made significant improvement as an 11-1 start to this season reflected. The leader is senior co-captain and shortstop Spencer Bard, a very good defensive player, who plays several positions. He’ll be attending MIT. Senior co-captain Colin Gregory (8-1) is the probable starter. Freshman twins Mitchell and Matt Mullock have been impressive for the young team, known to work counts. The Foxes had four hits in ning innings in the semifinal, but worked seven walks. Bard drove in the winning run and Adam Quaranta got the win on the mound off five innings of relief.
Rutgers Prep report: The Argonauts have built this run on hitting, something they have done throughout the season and with an unforgiving schedule that included Central Group IV champ Hunterdon Central and Skyland Delaware contenders Bridgewater-Raritan, Immaculata and Watchung Hills, Thirteen of their opponents had winning records. The Argonauts are hitting .403 as a team and scoring 9.1 runs per game. Senior third baseman/pitcher Malcolm Kelsey’s .522 average and 50 hits leads the way. Senior Spencer Diggins is batting .522 with 47 hits and junior center fielder Anthony Brocato leads with RBI (39), doubles (16) and home runs (8) and is hitting .483. Senior catcher Colby Smith and Kelsey both have seven homers – second-best on the team. Smith, a Middlesex Borough native, is also hitting .410 with 38 RBI. Coach Larry Santowasso can go with either sophomore P.J. Strahm (5-4, 3.43) or Kelsey (4-4, 3.38) on the mound. This is the first year Rutgers Prep is playing in the NJSIAA tournament.
What’s next?: The winner meets the winner of the Non Public B North final between Morristown Beard and Morris Catholic.