2001 New Jersey State Little League® Tournament Results
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New Jersey State Tournament

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New Jersey State Tournament
Host - Secaucus (District 7)
At Buchmuller Park

Participating Teams
Section 1 Champions Randolph West (District 1)
Section 2 Champions Belleville American (District 8)
Section 3 Champions Ocean Township North (District 11)
Section 4 Champions South Vineland (District 3)

Tournament Results:

Opening Round:
Belleville American 6, Randolph West 5
South Vineland 3, Ocean Township North 1

Elimination Bracket Semifinals (four teams remain):
Randolph West 8, Ocean Township North 6 (elim.)

Winner's Bracket Finals:
South Vineland 9, Belleville American 2

Elimination Bracket Finals (three teams remain):
Randolph West 9, Belleville American 7 (elim.)

Championship Series:
Randolph West 3, South Vineland 0
Randolph West 11, South Vineland 10 (TITLE)


Twenty-one runs. Twenty-five hits. A four run lead, blown. A three-run lead, lost on a lead-changing home run. A rally killed by a spectator's alertness.

And ultimately, a state championship for Randolph West.

In the second highest-scoring New Jersey state championship game ever played, Randolph West edged South Vineland 11-10 at Buchmuller Park in Secaucus. The win, which gave the Morris County league its first ever state championship, was Randolph West's fourth in a row following an opening round loss to Belleville American at the state tournament.

Randolph West's final win did not come easily. Randolph opened up an early 4-0 lead, watched South Vineland tie the score, re-claimed a 7-4 lead, and fell behind 8-7 -- all in the game's first three innings. Randolph re-established the lead in the fourth, and held on as relief pitcher Kyle Krannich held the South Jersey power to two runs over the final three innings.

Randolph started strongly in the title game. RBI hits from D.J. Anderson and Robert Kral chased South Vineland's starting pitcher after just four batters, and Mark Zaziski and Rich Veith later drove in two more runs as Randolph led 4-0 before South Vineland came to bat. South Vineland quickly answered, however, as Joan Perez singled home a run and Ryan Chini drilled a three-run homer to right field to tie the game.

Randolph reclaimed the lead in the second, as Kral drew a bases-loaded walk, and Justin Freedman and Zaziski each singled home a run. South Vineland was undeterred. An RBI double from Abel Gonzalez in the second cut the Randolph lead to 7-5, and Alexi Colon's RBI single and Luis Flores' two-run homer gave South Vineland the lead after three innings of play.

The game turned in Randolph West's favor in the fourth. Zaziski's fielder's choice, Veith's sacrifice fly to right field, and Andrew Somberg's sacrifice fly to right field all drove in runs as the District 1 champions surged back into a 10-8 lead.

As usual, Vineland responded -- but their rally was cut short by a controversial call. Chini laced a one-out double that appeared to score a South Vineland teammate from first. However, a Randolph fan noticed that the runner had missed second base, and alerted the Randolph coaching staff in the dugout. Randolph's subsequent appeal was upheld, and the run was taken off the board. South Vineland ultimately failed to score in the inning, and Randolph maintained its two run edge. They wouldn't trail again.

Randolph added an insurance run in the fifth, and South Vineland responded with one in the bottom of the inning, but Eric Heredia's warning-track flyball was just shy of a lead-changing grand slam and ended the inning with Randolph's lead intact. Krannich surrendered Flores' second homer of the game with two outs in the bottom of the sixth, but was able to induce a game-ending pop fly to shortstop that secured the game for Randolph West.

The wild title game was a contrast to the first championship series meeting between Randolph West and South Vineland. Anderson held South Vineland to four hits and Randolph West defeated South Vineland 3-0 to force the tournament to an 'if' game.

Randolph took the lead in the bottom of the first when Krannich singled and later scored on an error. In the third, Krannich began a two-out rally by reaching on an infield single. Kral doubled him home, and then scored on Freedman's single to give Randolph West a 3-0 lead.

While his teammates built the lead, Anderson was in control on the mound. Randolph West's ace, who had retired the last three batters to earn a save in Randolph's 9-7 win over Belleville American the night before, allowed only one baserunner to reach third base while striking out ten batters. He ran into trouble only once, when a pair of walks and an error loaded the bases with two outs in the fourth. Zaziski made a sliding catch of a line drive in center field to end the inning, and Anderson fought off the effects of a sore elbow to shut out South Vineland the rest of the way.

Randolph West opened the tournament with a 6-5 loss to Belleville American. Justin Gervasi and Mark Balbach had key RBI hits as Belleville snapped a 1-1 tie with a three run third inning rally. Belleville took a 6-2 lead into the bottom of the sixth, and held on despite Somberg's two-out bases-loaded walk and Chris Mastrangelo's two-run double. Balbach, who struck out ten and allowed five hits, registered a strikeout to end the game.

In the other opening round game, Gonzalez struck out eleven and used a sharp-breaking curveball to hold Ocean Township North to three hits as South Vineland advanced with a 3-1 victory. South Vineland scored all of its runs in the fifth. Josh Moren reached on an infield hit to score Heredia, and pinch-hitter Alexi Colon reached on a throwing error that scored two more runs.

South Vineland then downed Belleville 9-2 to reach the championship game. Gonzalez opened the scoring with a three-run homer in the third, and later added an RBI double in his team's four-run fifth inning rally. Perez contributed a two-run single in the fourth. South Vineland turned a pair of early double plays, and pitchers Ceasar Evangelista and Moren held Belleville American scoreless until the sixth while allowing only two hits.

While South Vineland had secured one title game berth, Randolph West needed to fend off last inning rallies from Ocean Township North and Belleville American to claim the other slot. Randolph first eliminated Ocean Township North 8-6. Anderson had three doubles and drove in four runs, while Krannich added a pair of RBIs. Randolph led 8-1 after five innings, but Ocean Township scored five runs in the final inning before Krannich came on in relief and registered the game's final two outs.

The next day, Randolph held off Belleville's sixth inning comeback in a 9-7 win. Belleville sent ten batters to the plate in to top of the first inning and built a 5-0 lead, but Freedman's bases-loaded walk and Zaziski's grand slam in the bottom of the inning tied the score. Randolph West took the lead on RBI singles from Anderson and Freedman in the second, and padded it in RBI hits from Krannich and Travaglia in the third. Gervasi's two-run homer in the sixth sliced the lead to 9-7, but Anderson came in to register a groundout and two strikeouts to clinch the win.

Randolph then swept South Vineland to claim the state title. Many of Randolph West's players had been members of the Randolph LL team (prior to the league's split into two charters) that finished as state runner-up in the 9-10 year old division in 1999.

Randolph West advanced to the Mid-Atlantic Region tournament following their win at the state tournament, and reached the semifinal round in a tournament later tainted by controversy. A post-World Series investigation revealed a string of age and residency violations by eventual Mid-Atlantic champion Rolando Paulino LL (Bronx, New York), which was then stripped of all tournament victories. State College American (Pennsylvania), the runner-up to the New York team and the club that eliminated Randolph West in the semifinal round, was awarded the region championship.

Follow Randolph West at the Mid-Atlantic Region Tournament -- click here to view results.


  Winner's Bracket Final 1 2 3 4 5 6 R H E
Belleville American 0 0 0 0 0 2 2 2 4
South Vineland 0 0 3 2 4 x 9 7 2
  Elimination Bracket Final
Belleville American 5 0 0 0 0 2 7 9 -
Randolph West 5 2 2 0 0 x 9 - -
  Championship Series
South Vineland 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 1
Randolph West 1 0 2 0 0 x 3 6 1
  Championship Series
Randolph West 4 3 0 3 1 0 11 10 2
South Vineland 4 1 3 0 1 1 10 14 3

2001 New Jersey District Champions and Sectional Tournament Results:

District Champions
in Section 1
District Champions
in Section 2
D1 - Randolph West
D2 - Pequannock
D4 - River Edge
D17 - Hillsborough American
D20 - Kittatinny

Section 1 Tournament
Host - Pequannock (District 2)
At Washington Park

Tournament Results:
1 - Hillsborough American 1, River Edge 0
2 - Randolph West 3, Kittatinny 1
3 - Pequannock 3, Hillsborough American 2
4 - Kittatinny 8, River Edge 1 (elim.)
5 - Randolph West 10, Pequannock 2
6 - Hillsborough American 5, Kittatinny 0 (elim.)
7 - Pequannock 5, Hillsborough American 0 (elim.)
8 - Randolph West 7, Pequannock 1 (TITLE)

D5 - Rutherford American
D6 - Teaneck Southern
D7 - West New York National
D8 - Belleville American
D9 - Union National

Section 2 Tournament
Host - Belleville (District 8)

Tournament Results:
1 - Teaneck Southern 1, Union National 0
2 - Rutherford American 1, West New York National 0
3 - Belleville American 4, Teaneck Southern 3 (7 innings)
4 - Union National 4, West New York National 1 (elim.)
5 - Belleville American 4, Rutherford American 1
6 - Teaneck Southern 8, Union National 1 (elim.)
7 - Teaneck Southern 11, Rutherford American 9 (elim.)
8 - Belleville American 9, Teaneck Southern 2 (TITLE)

District Champions
in Section 3
District Champions
in Section 4
D10 - Woodbridge
D11 - Ocean Township North
D12 - Nottingham (Hamilton Square)
D18 - Brick American
D19 - Freehold Township

Section 3 Tournament
Host - Marlboro (District 19)

Tournament Results:
1 - Freehold Township 6, Nottingham 4
2 - Woodbridge 6, Ocean North 2
3 - Brick American 7, Freehold Township 4
4 - Ocean North 9, Nottingham 1 (elim.)
5 - Brick American 11, Woodbridge 1
6 - Ocean North 5, Freehold Township 4 (elim.)
7 - Ocean North 7, Woodbridge 0 (elim.)
8 - Ocean North 1, Brick American 0
9 - Ocean North 8, Brick American 2 (TITLE)

D3 - South Vineland
D13 - Gibbsboro/Voorhees
D14 - Cramer Hill (Camden)
D15 - Mantua
D16 - Margate City
D21 - Franklin Township (Malaga)

Section 4 Tournament
Championship Game Host - Margate City (District 16)

Tournament Results:
1 - South Vineland 7, Mantua 1
2 - Franklin Township 5, Margate City 3
3 - South Vineland 10, Cramer Hill 1
4 - Gibbsboro/Voorhees 11, Franklin Township 0
5 - Franklin Township 1, Mantua 0 (elim.)
6 - Margate City 8, Cramer Hill 5 (elim.)
7 - South Vineland 9, Gibbsboro/Voorhees 7
8 - Franklin Township 13, Margate City 0 (elim.)
9 - Gibbsboro/Voorhees 7, Franklin Township 5 (elim.)
10 - South Vineland 7, Gibbsboro/Voorhees 4 (TITLE)

Toward the past

Toward the present

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Last revision: 06/09/2004