South Jersey powerhouses get ready for what’s sure to be one of the most competitive seasons yet.
The spring season is a special time for many high school athletes, but especially the seniors. It’s the final time they’ll don the school colors they’ve proudly worn for four years, and the last chance they’ll get to take to the field or court with their high school friends. For them, every at-bat or race means a little bit more than it does to the underclassmen.
In South Jersey, there are a number of exceptional seniors preparing for their last hurrah in the next several months. Marie McCool, the New Jersey Player of the Year in girls lacrosse last year, will look to lead Moorestown to yet another state championship before heading to the University of North Carolina. Bishop Eustace left-hander Devin Smeltzer is one of the top pitchers in the state, while another baseball star, Eastern’s Tom Flacco, will cap a remarkable three-sport career with the Vikings this spring. The loaded Paul VI softball team has a pair of outstanding seniors in Brielle Pietrafesa and Dylan Jarvis, while a third—pitcher Rosie LaGrotta—will spend her first and only spring with the Eagles after transferring in from Sacred Heart. On the links, Washington Township’s Joe Russo has already enjoyed a phenomenal career, and you can be sure he’ll soon add a tournament title or two to his collection.
As for the teams themselves, there is no shortage of compelling storylines to follow, and both the seniors and underclassmen will be contributing to their success. The powerhouse Gloucester Catholic program has a chance to become the first New Jersey baseball team to win five straight state championships, while Moorestown should once again be nationally ranked in girls lacrosse. Our area boasts a number of championship contenders in track, including the Kingsway boys and Haddonfield girls, and the Washington Township softball team returns to the diamond after a memorable 2013.
To get you prepared for the spring season, Suburban Family takes a look at the teams and athletes to keep an eye on this year, especially the seniors who will soon be moving on. We focus on nine sports and 17 area schools—just a sampling of the talent out there across South Jersey—including Bishop Eustace, Camden Catholic, Cherokee, Cherry Hill East, Cherry Hill West, Clearview, Eastern, Gloucester Catholic, Haddonfield, Kingsway, Lenape, Moorestown, Moorestown Friends, Paul VI, Seneca, Shawnee and Washington Township.
After a frigid winter, this spring sports season is probably more highly anticipated than ever. We’ll make sure you’re ready.
Click on the links for the full articles and schedules:
Published (and copyrighted) in Suburban Family’s High School Spring Sports Preview, January, 2014.
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