The 2022 Gill St. Bernard's varsity baseball team finished with an overall record of 15-14, took third place in the highly competitive Valley Division of the Skyland Conference, and advanced to the Non-Public B Sectional Finals for the fourth time in the last six years. Regular season highlights included an early season non-conference win over Morris County power Mount Olive, a Somerset County Tournament victory over Immaculata, and a two-game sweep of local rival Bernards High School.
The boys spent much of their March pre-season in Port St. Lucie, Florida, where they trained for eight days and faced four elite New England prep schools. "It was good to get back to Florida this year," said head coach Dave Pasquale. "The trip really helps the boys bond as a team and the level of competition we face prepares us well for a very challenging schedule during the season." That schedule included eight games against teams that were ranked in the top-25 in the state and concluded with a deep run in New Jersey's premier tournament.
"The highlight for us was definitely the state tournament run," said Pasquale of his 6th-seeded Knights. "We've had success at the state level in recent years, and even though it ended in heartbreaking fashion, I'm very proud of what we were able to accomplish." GSB won a first-round game over Mater Dei Prep, then rattled off two upset victories over 3-seed Montclair Kimberley and 2-seed St. Mary's (Rutherford) before ultimately falling to Immaculata 8-7 in the sectional championship game.
Eight seniors led the way for Gill, including Christian and Logan Mote, who will continue their baseball careers at Iona College next year. The all-senior outfield of Joe Perri, Nate Fodor, and Matt Bloomenthal established themselves as one of the best defensive outfields in the area. Carter Nowack and Ryan Brandl provided critical innings on the mound, and Anthony Curialle contributed as a designated hitter and part-time position player.
Second baseman Zack Wendell '23 will lead a solid returning core in 2023 that will include John DiGregorio '24 and Matt Park '24, two of the top sophomore hitters in the state. Dylan Sempervive '24 emerged as GSB's ace on the mound, leading the team in innings pitched and tossing a complete game shutout in the sectional semi-final. Michael Ricciardulli '24, Robert Kirsh '24, and Tim Park '25 also made key contributions to the Knights' success and will have more extensive roles in 2023.
"The season definitely had its ups and downs," Pasquale reflected, "but the resiliency of this group shined throughout. I'm very proud of what they accomplished in 2022 and I have no doubt more success will follow in 2023."