The Lacey Lions woke up their offense to dig themselves out of an early hole and defeat the “Hitting Indians” of Toms River South 8-6 Saturday morning at Ken Frank Baseball Stadium.
James Roselli hit a pinch-hit 2-run homer in the fifth inning that sparked the Lions out to a 6-3 lead. Miles Feaster went 2-for-4 with a walk and drove in a run that put Lacey up 4-3 in the fourth inning; thier first lead of the contest. Darrien Grissard also reached three times, going 2-for-3 with a walk. Anthony Clayton drew three walks and certainly made TRS pitchers work.
Evan Wallis picked up his first win of the season, going 5.1 innings and settling in after allowing two runs in the bottom of the first following back-to-back RBI hits from T.J. Scuderi and Tom Spiwak.
Lacey would strike for three in the third after Feaster drove in Grissard, who led the inning with a double. Anthony Tobia then drove in two when his grounder found a hole on the left side of the infield.
Toms River South would tie the game up in the bottom half of the frame when Jordan Erbe hit a bullet to third that couldn’t be handled, however Wallis would settle in and strand the bases loaded and keep the score knotted up at 3-3.
Grissard helped manufacture a run when he hit a 1-out single and stole second base. A single later in the inning from Feaster to allow Lacey to reclaim a 4-3 edge.
Roselli’s shot off the top of the school in the fifth upped the lead to 6-3 and in the bottom half of the fifth, Scuderi sent one out to dead-center to cut it to two. Scuderi had a perfect day at the plate for the Indians, going 3-for-3 with a double, single, and solo shot. He was also hit by a 3-0 pitch.
TRS would push across another run in the fifth inning. Justin Lowden picked up the first of his two singles, and later in the inning, Michael Lazzaro’s 2-out single trimmed the Lacey lead to 6-5 heading into the sixth.
Lacey would add some insurance in the sixth inning. After a lead-off single by Grissard, catcher Jorden Jurkiewicz tripled him home and was then singled home by Keith Apostolos to give Lacey an 8-5 lead.
Lowden would single in a run in the bottom half of the sixth, but Apostolos would close out the game with a 1-2-3 seventh inning for the save and give Lacey the victory on Opening Day.
Scuderi went 3.2 innings and suffered the loss, however he picked up seven strikeouts to go along with his three hits.
Sun spotted fields and the cracks of bats is once again a familiarity, as New Jersey opened up their 2018 baseball season Saturday. Lacey and Toms River South are both coming off banner years. Lacey won the B-South crown and made it to the South Jersey Group 3 semis, while Toms River South won A-South and reached the semi-finals of the Ocean County Tournament, Shore Conference Tournament, and NJSIAA Central Jersey Group 3 playoffs.
TRS will look to put this loss behind them and bounce back on Tuesday when they travel to Jackson to take on the Jaguars of Jackson Memorial in their first game in A-South
Lacey will play host to Point Boro in a B-South match-up on Tuesday in their home opener.