2013 New Jersey State Little League® Tournament Results
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New Jersey State Tournament
Major Baseball Division

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New Jersey State Tournament
Host - Wallington (District 5)

Wallington Little League's field is located at 252 Mount Pleasant Avenue in Wallington.

Participating Teams
Section 1 Champions Wayne National (District 2)
Section 2 Champions Nutley East (District 8)
Section 3 Champions Toms River East American (District 18)
Section 4 Champions East Greenwich (Clarksboro) (District 15)

Click here to view 2013 district tournament results for New Jersey.

Tournament Results:

Opening Round:
Toms River East American 8, Wayne National 4 (7 innings)
East Greenwich 4, Nutley East 3

Elimination Bracket Semifinal (four teams remain):
Nutley East 14, Wayne National 1 (4 innings; elim.)

Winner's Bracket Final:
East Greenwich 14, Toms River East American 4 (5 innings)

Elimination Bracket Final (three teams remain):
Toms River East American 7, Nutley East 4 (elim.)

Championship Game:
East Greenwich 4, Toms River East American 2 (TITLE)


There are many ways to win a Little League baseball game. Jump to an early lead. Rally from behind using a late push. Close games. Mercy rule margins of victory. Timely offense. Opportunistic offense. Timely defense.

In the 2013 New Jersey state tournament, East Greenwich Little League used all of the above.

East Greenwich became the first Section 4 league to win the New Jersey state championship in the major baseball division in 20 years, and the first South Jersey league since 1991, by sweeping to three consecutive victories at Wallington Little League's Plucinsky-Ward Field. East Greenwich's 4-2 championship game victory over Toms River East American Little League lifted the team into the Mid-Atlantic Region tournament in Bristol, Connecticut.

"We started with this group as eight-year-olds and won a coach pitch tournament together," said East Greenwich manager Jim Szestowicki after the tournament. "When they turned ten, we won District 15 and lost in the Section 4 final, and last year they won District 15 again. This year, they put it all together."

East Greenwich scored all of its title game runs in the first inning, then held on to defeat Toms River East American for the second time in the tournament. Hunter Kelly and Jonathon Burlingame each delivered RBI doubles as part of a five-hit inning, and Ryan Mihlebach and Josh Crowding also drove in runs as East Greenwich jumped to a 4-0 advantage and chased Toms River's starting pitcher. Toms River reliever Dougie Pombo stifled the rally and then posted five additional shutout innings, but the early push was enough to keep the South Jersey team in front.

Pombo drilled a solo home run in the fifth inning to narrow East Greenwich's lead, and some timely defense curtailed a last-ditch rally in the sixth.

Jonny Munson opened the inning with a double, and Toms River soon had runners at the corners with nobody out. But Burlingame, the East Greenwich shortstop, stymied the rally by starting a double play on a ground ball. Toms River scored a run on the play, but the bases were again empty, and after a pair of singles, Crowding -- the fourth East Greenwich pitcher of the game -- induced a liner to right that ended the game.

Toms River East American stranded ten baserunners in the contest, and East Greenwich turned a pair of double plays.

"We were just off-balance all night and ran out of innings," said Toms River manager Denny Munson. "But these guys never quit."

Caleb Ritchie, Zack Miller, Michael Mackley, and Crowding shared the pitching duties for East Greenwich, which had earlier laced Toms River, 14-4 in four innings, in the winner's bracket final. Sean Dougherty, the second-place hitter in East Greenwich's lineup, collected four hits, including a pair of home runs, and drove in eight runs in the contest. He launched a solo home run in the first and a two-run single in the second as East Greenwich took an early 4-2 lead, and his two-run triple in the third was part of a seven-run rally that put his team firmly in control. Dougherty added a three-run homer in the fifth that pushed the lead to 14-2 before a pair of late Toms River runs provided the final margin of victory.

"We're obviously a smaller team, with a draw from a smaller pool of kids," said Szestowicki. "But this is a special group with a lot of talent, and we probably work harder than anybody. We play travel ball, play in the best tournaments, and face the best pitching on the East Coast. We have a great defense, a strong offense, and really strong pitching."

East Greenwich reached the winner's bracket final only after rallying from a 3-1 deficit with two outs in the bottom of the sixth inning in their opening round game against Nutley East Little League. The game was scoreless through three innings, but Nutley built a 3-0 lead with runs in the fourth and fifth innings. Crowding singled home a run in the fifth, but after Mackley and Ethan Gill opened the sixth with base hits, a pair of outs left East Greenwich on the brink of defeat.

But after a Nutley pitching change, a pair of walks loaded the bases and forced in a run. Mihlebach then bounced a hard grounder toward second that took a bad hop, skipped past the Nutley second baseman, and tied the score. Crowding then popped up a two-strike pitch, but the Nutley infielder squeezed his glove too soon and the ball squirted out and enabled the winning run to score.

Toms River, which had rallied from a two-run deficit in the sixth before winning its opener against Wayne National Little League in extra innings, bounced back from its first loss to East Greenwich with a 7-4 victory over Nutley East in the elimination bracket final. Michael Wardell and catcher Gabe Driscoll each drove in runs with two-out hits in the first inning, and Wardell's two-run homer in the third plated Nick Silvia and gave his team a 4-1 lead.

Nutley closed to within 4-3 in the fifth, but Jonny Munson reeled in a potential home run ball near the outfield fence to preserve Toms River's lead. The Americans added three runs in the bottom of the inning, before Wardell worked out of a jam in the sixth with a pair of strikeouts to close out the win.

"Michael Wardell was phenomenal tonight," said Denny Munson. "That two-run homer really sparked the whole team and turned the whole game around, (and) his performance on the mound was just outstanding."

The win moved Toms River into a rematch with East Greenwich, but the Ocean County team's hopes of adding to the three state championships it won during the 1990s were quelled by East Greenwich's early lead and steady defense.

"It's a once in a lifetime dream for the kids," said Szestowicki after the championship game. "We have a great group of kids and the parents are all on board. I don't know if anyone was expecting to win states or make a trip to Connecticut, but we're definitely excited."

Follow East Greenwich at the Mid-Atlantic Region Tournament -- Click here to view results.


  Opening Round 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 R H E
Toms River East American 2 0 0 0 0 2 4 8 - -
Wayne National 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 4 - -
  Opening Round
Nutley East 0 0 0 2 1 0 3 - -
East Greenwich 0 0 0 0 1 3 4 - -
  Elimination Bracket Semifinal
Nutley East 7 7 0 0 14 - -
Wayne National 0 0 1 0 1 - -
  Winner's Bracket Final
East Greenwich 1 3 7 0 3 14 - -
Toms River East American 0 2 0 0 2 4 - -
  Elimination Bracket Final
Nutley East 1 0 0 0 2 1 4 5 -
Toms River East American 2 0 2 0 3 x 7 - -
  Championship Game
Toms River East American 0 0 0 0 1 1 2 - -
East Greenwich 4 0 0 0 0 x 4 - -

2013 New Jersey District Champions and Sectional Tournament Results

District Champions
in Section 1
District Champions
in Section 2
D1 - Par Troy East (Parsippany)
D2 - Wayne National
D4 - Washington Township
D17 - Somerset Hills
D20 - Lackawanna

Section 1 Tournament
Host - Dumont (District 4)

Tournament Results:
1 - Par Troy East 10, Somerset Hills 0 (5 innings)
2 - Wayne National 7, Lackawanna 2
3 - Washington Township 2, Par Troy East 1
4 - Somerset Hills 10, Lackawanna 7 (elim.)
5 - Wayne National 10, Washington Township 8
6 - Par Troy East 15, Somerset Hills 9 (elim.)
7 - Par Troy East 9, Washington Township 0 (elim.)
8 - Wayne National 11, Par Troy East 1 (5 innings; TITLE)

D5 - Wood-Ridge/Moonachie
D6 - Teaneck Southern
D7 - Hoboken
D8 - Nutley East

Section 2 Tournament
Host - Garfield (District 5)

Tournament Results:
1 - Teaneck Southern 7, Wood-Ridge/Moonachie 6
2 - Nutley East 7, Hoboken 5
3 - Hoboken 10, Wood-Ridge/Moonachie 9 (elim.)
4 - Nutley East 7, Teaneck Southern 0
5 - Hoboken 11, Teaneck Southern 2 (elim.)
6 - Nutley East 9, Hoboken 5 (TITLE)

District Champions
in Section 3
District Champions
in Section 4
D10 - Clark
D11 - South Wall
D12 - Nottingham (Hamilton Square)
D18 - Toms River East American
D19 - Eatontown

Section 3 Tournament
Host - Spring Lake Heights (District 11)

Tournament Results:
1 - South Wall 12, Toms River East American 8
2 - Nottingham 10, Eatontown 1
3 - South Wall 4, Clark 0
4 - Toms River East American 14, Eatontown 6 (elim.)
6 - Toms River East American 18, Clark 8 (4 innings; elim.)
5 - Nottingham 11, South Wall 10 (8 innings)
7 - Toms River East American 19, South Wall 5 (elim.)
8 - Toms River East American 15, Nottingham 13
9 - Toms River East American 5, Nottingham 4 (TITLE)

D3 - East Vineland
D13 - Haddonfield
D14 - Erial
D15 - East Greenwich (Clarksboro)
D16 - Ocean City
D21 - Monroe Township (Williamstown)

Section 4 Tournament
Host - Hammonton (District 16)

Tournament Results:
1 - Erial 8, Monroe Township 1
2 - Ocean City 6, East Vineland 0
3 - East Greenwich 12, Erial 2
4 - Haddonfield 6, Ocean City 1
5 - Ocean City 7, Monroe Township 5 (elim.)
6 - East Vineland 9, Erial 0 (elim.)
7 - Haddonfield 13, East Greenwich 6
8 - Ocean City 8, East Vineland 7 (elim.)
9 - East Greenwich 12, Ocean City 2 (elim.)
10 - East Greenwich 9, Haddonfield 6
11 - East Greenwich 14, Haddonfield 5 (TITLE)

Toward the past

Toward the present

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Last revision: 06/08/2014