Final Dill

Kind of a Big Dill: Senior's Stellar Night Helps Green Wave Capture 5th Straight Title

The Morris County Baseball Final took place at Montville High School under the lights on Thursday and did not disappoint. Powerhouse Delbarton looked to win their 5th-straight title with the red-hot Chatham Cougars standing in their way. 

The stage was set for a historic matchup on a cool, misty spring evening. Aiden Dill, the star of the Green Wave, took the mound after his stellar performance against Randolph. The left-hander had allowed a mere two hits in his last start, a crucial factor in his team's journey to the finals. 

Game Recap

The Cougars called on Junior Wes Maskimow who also was lights out in the semis, holding Morris Knolls to just one run. Even after throwing 90 pitches, Maskimow was the clear choice to toe the slab for the Cougars, with Trent Jenks serving as his relief. 

Contrary to expectations, the game turned into a pitcher’s duel. Dill and Maskimow showcased their poise, proving why they were chosen for two consecutive county games. Despite facing some challenging situations, Maskimow remained unfazed, escaping each jam he encountered. His resilience was evident as he tossed four innings of shutout ball against the formidable Delbarton lineup.

Unfortunately for Maskimow and the Cougars, Aiden Dill picked up right where he left off five days ago and was nearly unhittable. The Seton Hall commit went six strong innings, allowing only two hits while striking out seven. Dill’s control and ability to contain the Cougars’ running game were even more impressive. That Andy Pettitte-like pickoff move froze the Chatham baserunners, eliminating their running game. 

The Green Wave pushed the game's first run across in the bottom of the 5th inning. Maskimow was replaced by Trent Jenks to start the inning after 81 pitches through his four innings of work. After a lead-off walk, Matt Tafuri swiped 2nd base and quickly advanced to 3rd on a passed ball. With one out, Sal Garcia lofted a flyball to left that would surely bring in a run for a sacrifice fly. Clearly thinking about throwing the runner at 3rd out, Kyle Ruddy could not control the ball and was charged with an error, giving Delbarton a 1-0 lead.

A wild pitch would put the Green Wave up 2-0 in the 6th, followed by a Matt Tafuri RBI single to give Delbarton a comfortable 3-0 lead, with Christian Zebrowski coming in to nail down the Save. The Senior struck out the side to notch Delbarton their 5th straight county title. 

Double Digits

The county win is not only Delbarton’s 5th straight but their 10th overall county title, making them just the second team to have double-digit Morris County titles joining Morristown. The five-straight titles date back to 2019 when Jack Leiter and Anthony Volpe led the team. 

Chill Dill

Aiden Dill made history Thursday night, becoming the first player to take home a third County Final MCP Award. The Senior has shown that the bright lights and big stage don’t bother him always rising to the challenge when the team needs him the most.

Up Next

The Morris County Tournament did not disappoint this year. We were treated to stellar pitching, incredible hitting, and just pure drama these past few weeks. The beautiful thing about high school baseball is that we are only just getting started. The New Jersey State Playoffs lurk just beyond the horizon, and while we still have some more County Finals to go this week, teams around the state are gearing up to make a run at the ultimate title. 

With the Morris County Tournament now wrapped up, we look ahead to tomorrow's HWS final between North Hunterdon and Phillipsburg.

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County Tournament Final

Photo by Mick Haupt on Unsplash

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