Ryan Ramsey tosses a 1-hitter and top-ranked Pascack Hills baseball tops No. 2 Bergen Catholic.
Greg Mattura, Staff Writer, @gregmattura
MONTVALE – Ryan Ramsey and Pascack Hills have now won 24 consecutive baseball games dating back to last year.
Ramsey tossed a one-hitter and the top-ranked team in the NorthJersey.com Top 25 defeated No. 2 Bergen Catholic, 3-0, on Saturday in a Big North Conference inter-divisional showdown that took just 1 hour, 46 minutes.
The Maryland-bound senior left-hander and the Cowboys are defending Bergen County and NJSIAA Group 2 champions and have not lost since they fell last season to Bergen Catholic, 1-0.
“Thinking about last year, and losing 1-0 to them, and then coming back this year [and beating them], it’s really nice,” Ramsey said.
Ryan Ramsey tossed a shutout to lead Pascack Hills to a 3-0 baseball victory over Bergen Catholic in Montvale on Saturday, April 13, 2019. (Photo: Greg Mattura)
Ramsey allowed one single, two walks and struck out five to help Pascack Hills improve to 6-0. He allowed a second-inning leadoff single to right-center to Luis De Le Cruz, who was then erased on a 3-6 double play.
“Not a bad job by Ryan Ramsey,” Pascack Hills coach Kevin Kirkby said. “He threw the ball real well today, and we made the plays.”
Pascack Hills scored its runs on a fifth-inning home run by Brandon Siegenthaler, a sixth-inning RBI single by Chris Curcio and an RBI groundout by Marc Hernandez.
“[Ramsey] put up a zero for us and it was great,” Siegenthaler said, “and we put up a couple of runs, and that’s all we needed.”
What it means
Pascack Hills will remain No. 1 in the NorthJersey.com Top 25 and strengthen its chances of earning the No. 1 seed for the Bergen County tournament. Bergen Catholic (4-2) is likely to drop from No. 2 in the rankings after its second consecutive loss.
Ramsey only allowed one batter to reach third base, in the sixth, and prevented a run from scoring with a pair of strikeouts sandwiched around a groundout. Ramsey walked Dillon DiBartolomeo leading off the sixth, threw the ball away on a pickoff attempt, then got a strikeout looking, a groundout to first that advanced the runner to third, and a swinging strikeout.
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“The kid’s good,” Bergen Catholic coach Bob Muggeo said of Ramsey. “Ramsey is the top pitcher in the county, or one of the top pitchers in the county.”
By the numbers
Pascack Hills combined for just five hits against right-hander Angelo Deer and right-handed reliever Joe Morin, with Curcio producing two singles in three at-bats.
Siegenthaler’s homer led off the fifth, with him taking a 1-1 curveball over the fence in right for the 1-0 lead. Curcio’s RBI single was a blooper to shallow right that fell between three fielders. Hernandez’s 6-4 groundout made it 3-0.
Bergen Catholic made several stellar defensive plays, most notably: With runners on second and third and one out in the first, third baseman Orlando Pena caught a scalding liner near the bag and turned it into an inning-ending double play.
They said it
“I did really well,” said Ramsey, who favored fastballs up in the zone and breaking pitches down in the zone. “Throwing off-speed pitches, having all my stuff, especially my change-up and my curveball, and then my fastball and being able to pump it a little bit harder, especially with hot weather, I really felt comfortable.”
“We watched [Ramsey] pitch against Westwood, and I felt like we saw Westwood’s players chasing up in the zone. So I had a feeling that’s how he was going to approach us, with fastballs up, and sliders or curveballs down, and that’s what he did,” Muggeo said. “And we weren’t laying off his fastball. So we didn’t have a whole lot of really good hacks, we were down in the count, and we ended up taking more defensive swings than we would have liked.”