The Howell baseball team equaled its win total from last season on Thursday and all it took was a big comeback against a perennial Shore Conference power.
Trailing by five runs, the Rebels (4-1, 4-1) scored three runs in the fourth inning and three more in the fifth to take out Christian Brothers Academy, 6-5, in a Class A North contest.
The Rebels, 4-14 in 2012, now sit alone at the top of Class A North.
Mike Levy’s three-run home run in the bottom of the fifth gave Howell the lead for good at 6-5, as Zach Loroesh picked up the win in relief. The junior pitched the final four innings, giving up no runs on four hits while striking out five.
COLTS NECK 7, FREEHOLD TWP. 5: A one-out, two-run single in the top of the seventh gave the No. 7 Cougars (3-2, 3-2) the lead for good and highlighted a six-run top of the seventh in a Class A North win at the Patriots (2-4, 1-4).
Barturgil’s big hit was followed by a Matt Kleinstein two-run triple for a 6-3 lead. Kleinstein went 3-for-3 with three RBI, while finishing a triple short of a cycle.
For Freehold Township, Steve Derby went 3-for-4 with three runs scored an RBI, while Nick Cardace also went 3-for-4 with three RBI.
MIDD. SOUTH 3, MARLBORO 1: Rob Grilli faced 23 batters, two over the minimum, giving up just two hits and one earned run while striking out 12 and walking none to lead the No. 9 Eagles (3-2, 3-1) to a Class A North victory over the Mustangs (4-2, 3-2).
One of the hits was a solo home run by Evan Hilla to open the scoring in the bottom of the fourth, but Middletown South rallied for three runs in the top of the sixth to take control.
A two-RBI single to left from Andrew Wisialko gave the Eagles a 2-1 lead, while Grilli’s RBI groundout capped the scoring.
WALL 3, LONG BRANCH 1: A two-RBI single from sophomore Nick Martinez to center field on an 0-2 count in the bottom of the fourth inning opened the scoring and propelled the Crimson Knights (6-0, 4-0) outlasted the Green Wave (1-4, 0-3) in Class B North.
Junior hurler Tyler Swiggart went the distance, giving up five hits, one run and struck out seven to pick up his second win of the season.
NEPTUNE 2, FREEHOLD 1: Jason Richard’s solo home run in the third inning turned out to be the game-winning run and Tommy Pasquella tossed a complete-game three-hitter as the Scarlet Fliers (1-3, 1-3) picked up their first win of the season, defeating the Colonials (3-3, 2-3) in Class B North.
Richard hit his home run to left field on a 1-1 count, while Pasquella gave up three hits, struck out two, walked one and hit two batters in picking up the win.
Freehold threatened in the bottom of the seventh when Luke Tiefenthaler’s RBI single to right drove in Matt Chiusano to cut the deficit to 2-1, but it got no closer.
RUMSON-FH 3, RARITAN 2: A walk-off double in the bottom of the seventh from Joey Spernal gave the Bulldogs (3-2) a Class A Central win over the Rockets (3-3).
HOLMDEL 5, MANASQUAN 3: Joe Sadler’s third home run of the season, a solo shot to left in the top of the fourth inning, highlighted a Class A Central win for the Hornets (2-3, 2-3) at the Warriors (0-4, 0-4).
Justin Morgan went 2-for-3 with two doubles and a run scored.