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Jun 05, 2012
Holup extends scoreless streak in SCT victory

LAKEWOOD — The tear Brandon Holup ended the season on is one that will be remembered in the Shore Conference for a long time.



Holup, a senior right-hander, fired a two-hitter on Monday night in the Shore Conference Tournament championship game at FirstEnergy Park to lead Jackson Memorial to a 7-0 win over Toms River North. It was Holup’s fifth consecutive shutout. He ended the season with 35 straight scoreless innings. Toms River South, in a 5-3 win over the Jaguars on April 30, was the last team to score off Holup. The Indians scored four in the fourth and one in the seventh that day.



Holup (8-2) needed just 67 pitches in his latest gem. That included a three-pitch seventh inning, in which he got two groundballs to short, sandwiched around a groundball to second. He struck out seven and walked none.



Toms River North’s only base runners came when Ron Marinaccio led off the fourth with a line single to center and Scott Buxbaum buzzed a single past Holup’s ear into center with two out in the fifth.



All five of the shutouts in the streak came in tournament games, including the two in the SCT. Another shutout came in the Ocean County Tournament championship game. Holup was part of seven shutouts on the season.



For Jackson Memorial (25-3), the win concluded the first three-championship season in its history. The Jaguars also shared the Shore Conference Class A South championship with Toms River South and won the OCT title. It was also the second SCT title in the last four seasons and third overall for Jackson Memorial, which was appearing in the SCT final for the fourth straight year.



For Toms River North (17-9), which was defeated by Jackson Memorial for the fourth time on the season, the loss ended a surprising run to the final after it was seeded 15th.



Toms River North senior right-hander Nolan Diaz (4-1) was able to match Diaz through the first three innings before the Jaguars got to him the second time around the order. The Jaguars erupted for five runs on five hits in the bottom of the fourth. Seven straight hitters reached base. They had only one baserunner on a leadoff error in the first through the first three innings. That runner was erased on a double play. Ed Guippone started the decisive rally with a single to right center.



Senior shortstop Joe Ogren then rocketed a double down the left field line to put runners on second and third. Junior catcher Matt Thaiss was intentionally walked to load the bases before junior second baseman Spencer Young grounded a two-run double down the left-field line.



Mike Folk was intentionally walked to reload the bases, but pinch-hitter Tom Abarno foiled the strategy by looping an 0-2 pitch into shallow right for an RBI single. Matt Guarino then ripped a two-run single past first base to make it 5-0 and knock Diaz out of the box.



Marinaccio then came on and got the Mariners out of the inning with a 6-3 double play.



However, the way Holup has been throwing the last month of the season, a five-run lead seemed like a double-digit lead.



Toms River North was the first team to get a runner into scoring position in the top of the fourth when Marinaccio lined a single to center on the first pitch for the game’s first hit. He moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Nick Brebner.



However, Holup got a strikeout looking and then a ground out to short to end the inning.



Steven Falk: sfalk@njpressmedia.com

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