Montclair High School baseball wins 6 out of 7 as offense sets torrid pace
The Montclair baseball team had a little blip in the past two weeks, but the rest has gone according to plan.
As of the end of last week, the Mounties had won six of their last seven games. The one blip was a 1-0 loss to Nutley in which they were no-hit by a couple of Raiders pitchers on April 20 at home.
Before the Nutley game, Montclair won four straight, including a 4-3 victory at Seton Hall Prep on April 11 that started the run.
“Our team has practiced very hard,” Montclair head coach Ron Gavazzi said. “They have made corrections and shown improvement. Practice execution is game reality. Hopefully, we will continue making strides in practice.”
The Mounties won a pair of games to end last week after the no-hitter and had an 8-4 mark as of April 23. Three of the four losses have been by three or fewer runs.
On the mound, junior lefty Anthony Anzaldi has lived up to his billing by going 3-0 as the team’s ace. More spectacularly, he has not given up a run in 23.2 innings while striking out 37. He threw a complete-game shutout against Bloomfield (5-0, April 13) and six innings in the shutout of Livingston, 4-0, on April 22.
“Anthony has improved in all areas,” Gavazzi said. “He has been very effective. Anthony has been a top performer so far for us this season.”
In the seven-game stretch, Montclair has outscored its opponents 46-14, including defeating Passaic Valley, 18-4, on April 16, in an independent contest, and Rutherford, 8-5, on April 23.
Senior catcher Ethan Daddabbo, while known for his work behind the plate, is hot with the bat so far in 2022, leading the team in hitting with a .430 average, with 13 runs scored and 11 RBI. He was 3-for-4 with three RBI against Passaic Valley.
“Ethan has swung the bat well,” Gavazzi said. “He gets a bunch of quality at-bats every game and drives the ball. His production is critical for our team’s success. Ethan works hard on his swing daily, and he is very committed to his craft.”
One of the top freshmen in the Super Essex Conference is Mountie Benjamin St. Pierre, who was hitting just below .400 in the first 12 games while compiling 11 RBI and scoring 7 runs.
“Benjamin has very good swing mechanics,” the coach said. “There is no surprise that he has started well. For him, it is about adapting to this new environment. He is fitting in well.”
It was St. Pierre who was key in the victory over Seton Hall Prep.
He hit a clutch two-out single in the top of the seventh to score pinch runner Tyler Davis with the eventual winning run.
The freshman also hurled 2.2 scoreless innings in relief to pick up the victory on the mound.