To nobody’s surprise at the seeding meeting at Cranford High School Monday night, state-ranked Cranford earned the top seed once again for the 60th annual baseball Union County Tournament.
As of Monday night, Cranford was 7-0, ranked No. 2 in the state and was Union County’s only undefeated team.
On Saturday morning, Cranford came back to win at Delbarton 2-1, with Delbarton ranked No. 4 in the state at the time.
As the top seed last year and also as the two-time defending champion, Cranford was defeated by eighth-seeded Union 3-1 in the quarterfinals in a game that was played at Union because Cranford’s field was not playable.
Cranford has won the UCT seven times, all under 15th-season head coach Dennis McCaffery, including in 1999, 2000, 2001, 2003, 2007, 2010 and 2011.
McCaffery is 7-0 in UCT finals.
Scotch Plains, with a record of 7-1 as of Monday and only a 10-8 loss at Watchung Division rival Gov. Livingston last Tuesday, garnered the second seed. The Raiders last won the crown in 2009 and have reached the semifinals every year since 2008.
The rest of the top eight seeds are Westfield third, GL fourth, Elizabeth fifth, Union sixth, Dayton seventh and Union Catholic eighth.
Dayton, which reached the semifinals last year, began the week 6-1 and won six straight since opening with a 12-2 Union County Conference-Mountain Division loss at Roselle Park April 2. Dayton won the Mountain Division last year.
Union Catholic is 8-2, with its only loss to a Union County school being its 7-1 setback at home to Dayton last Tuesday in Mountain Division play. Union Catholic won the Mountain Division in 2011.
Summit, which dropped down to the Valley Division this year, had a record of 7-2 before falling at GL 4-1 Monday and leads the Valley Division with a record of 5-0. The Hilltoppers also produced one-run wins at home over Essex County schools Newark Academy and Glen Ridge.
Westfield and Union, the teams that clashed in last year’s championship game, with Westfield winning for the first time since 2006, are both 5-6 after Westfield defeated Union 9-4 Sunday night in UCC-Watchung Division play at TD Bank Ballpark in Bridgewater. It was Union’s third straight loss, while the teams ended up splitting their division games.
Westfield has a 7-6 Watchung Division home win over GL, which improved to 7-4 after Monday’s home win over Summit.
Here’s a look at how the field was seeded:
SEEDS: 1-Cranford. 2-Scotch Plains. 3-Westfield. 4-Gov. Livingston.
5-Elizabeth. 6-Union. 7-Dayton. 8-Union Catholic.
9-Summit. 10-Linden. 11-Johnson. 12-Rahway.
13-New Providence. 14-Roselle Catholic. 15-Oratory Prep. 16-Roselle Park.
17-Plainfield. 18-Hillside. 19-St. Mary’s, Elizabeth.
PRELIMINARY ROUND GAMES:
19-St. Mary’s at 14-Roselle Catholic
18-Hillside at 15-Oratory Prep
17-Plainfield at 16-Roselle Park
Preliminary round games must be completed by Thursday or Friday’s rain date.
Eight first round games are set for Saturday at the higher seeds. Call the athletic directors for accurate times. GL will be hosting its game at 3 p.m.
The four quarterfinal games are set for Wednesday, May 1 at 4 p.m. at the higher seeds.
The semifinals are scheduled for May 4 at a site to be determined. That is also an SAT date, with the games to start later in the afternoon.
There was a problem last year, with the first semifinal at Elizabeth’s Williams Field starting later because of SATs. The game went to extra innings and as a result there was not enough time to get the second game in because of darkness.
The teams there waiting to play the second game – Westfield and Dayton – had to come back to Williams Field the next day.
The championship game is scheduled for May 11 at Kean University’s Jim Hynes Field in Union at a time to be determined.
2012: Westfield 13, Union 3
WP: Mike Mondon. LP: Devin Zimmerman.
2011: Cranford 14, Gov. Livingston 1
WP: Kurt Rutmayer. LP: Joey Graziano.
2010: Cranford 6, Westfield 5
WP: Ryan Williamson. LP: Aiden Scanlon.
2009: Scotch Plains 2, Westfield 1 (10 inn.)
WP: Gary Binkiewicz. LP: Aiden Scanlon.
2008: Elizabeth 4, Westfield 2
WP: Gio Caraballo. LP: Chris Jenkins.
2007: Cranford 7, Gov. Livingston 1
WP: Dan Moreno. LP: Anthony Corsi.
2006: Westfield 9, Roselle Catholic 0
WP: Craig Ellis. LP: Nick Nolan.
2005: Roselle Catholic 6, Dayton 2
WP: Nick Nolan. LP: York Cook.
2004: Scotch Plains 3, Roselle Catholic 1
WP: James Scalfaro. LP: Nick Nolan.
2003: Cranford 7, Linden 4
WP: Brian Ciencin. LP: Mike Loureiro
2002: Westfield 7, Johnson 4
WP: Jay Cook. LP: Drew Thomas.
2001: Cranford 11, Plainfield 1
WP: Tom Polito. LP: Eladio Ortiz.
2000: Cranford 10, Rahway 0
WP: Tom Polito. LP: Steve Brown.
1999: Cranford 6, New Providence 5
WP: Tom Polito. LP: Todd Simo.
1998: Summit 5, Cranford 4
WP: Jared Chellevold. LP: Steve Brown.
1997: Westfield 7, Summit 1
WP: Matt Williams. LP: Jared Chellevold.
1996: Westfield 7, Gov. Livingston 1
WP: Brian Ciemniecki. LP: Eric Brown.
1995: Westfield 3, Elizabeth 0
WP: Kris Williams. LP: Al Hawkins.
1994: Westfield 7, Elizabeth 5
WP: Chris Vogel. LP: Al Hawkins.
1993: Union 5, Westfield 3
WP: Eric Shaw. LP: Chris Vogel.
1992: Summit 10, Linden 4
WP: Garth Ballantyne. LP: Bryan Kosiba.
1991: Elizabeth 10, Westfield 1
WP: Pat Migliore. LP: John Fox.
1990: Rahway 2, Elizabeth 0
WP: Pat Jackson. LP: Pat Migliore.
1989: Elizabeth 7, Linden 2
WP: Charlie Garcia. LP: Ariel Lopez.
1988: Brearley 8, Rahway 1
WP: Mike Chalenski. LP: Frank Jones.
1987: Westfield 13, Elizabeth 12
WP: Clint Factor. LP: Greg Randazza.
1986: Westfield 9, Linden 6
WP: Clint Factor. LP: Rob Shaloub.
1985: Elizabeth 7, Union 5
WP: Fred Gamboa. LP: Mike Lawlor.
1984: Union Catholic 6, Elizabeth 5
WP: Greg Lepore. LP: Chris Wnek.
1983: Elizabeth 9, Westfield 8
WP: Angel Hajie. LP: Rob Rotunda.
1982: Linden 3, Elizabeth 2
WP: Tony Melise. LP: Laz Alfonso.
1981: New Providence 2, Union 1
WP: Steve Gelmine. LP: John Rubinetti.
1980: Johnson 5, New Providence 2
WP: Ken Petren. LP: Steve Gelmine.
1979: Summit 2, St. Mary’s 0
WP: John Murray. LP: Belamino Suarez.
1978: Westfield 3, Cranford 2
WP: K.C. Knobloch. LP: Scott Kley.
1977: New Providence 6, Westfield 1
WP: Doug Rillo. LP: K.C. Knobloch.
1976: Scotch Plains 1, Cranford 0
WP: Eddie Reilly. LP: Jim Carsey.
1975: Union 15, Cranford 0
WP: Frank Araneo. LP: Joe Gachko.
1974: St. Patrick’s 5, Union 3
WP: Bob Hynes. LP: Frank Araneo.
1973: Union 1, Johnson 0
WP: Bob Hughes. LP: Bob Schwankert.
1972: Summit 1, Union 0
WP: Mike Reid. LP: Stan Jakubowski.
1971: Roselle Catholic 3, Cranford 0
WP: Tom Byrnes. LP: Steve Gachko.
1970: Union 4, Jefferson 0
WP: Neil Gold. LP: Bob Brescher.
1969: Scotch Plains 5, Cranford 2
WP: Dave Klaatava. LP: Dan Costanzo.
1968: Westfield 2, Union 1
WP: Frank Tokash. LP: Sandy Weber.
1967: Union 17, Jefferson 2
WP: Jim Clee. LP: Jim Cowen.
1966: Westfield 13, Roselle 1
WP: Don Anderson. LP: Terry Arendt.
1965: Union 10, Westfield 2
WP: Al Santorini. LP: Greg Chlan.
1964: Union 3, Roselle 0
WP: Al Santorini. LP: Sal Riggi.
1963: Westfield 5, Springfield 4
WP: Jim Smith. LP: Bill Kretzger.
1962: Union 3, Jefferson 1
WP: Bob Castiglione. LP: Bob Krok.
1961: Rahway 6, Linden 5
WP: Tom Hoagland. LP: Ray Crepeau.
1960: Linden 4, St. Mary’s 2
WP: Ed Apalanski. LP: Rich Burke.
1959: St. Mary’s 7, Rahway 2
WP: Bill Henry. LP: Rich Kiehn.
1958: Rahway 3, Roselle 1
WP: Thelmore James. LP: Ed Jones.
1957: Linden 7, Rahway 5
WP: Frank Russo. LPK Fred Kast.
1956: Rahway 4, Scotch Plains 0
WP: Fred Henderson. LP: Bill Booth.
1955: Jefferson 4, Linden 0
WP: Richie Jones. LP: Ron Perry
1954: Springfield 4, Jefferson 2
WP: Joe Schaffernoth. LP: Richie Jones.