Burlco, Jersey Shore reach Cup final

Christian DeLuca is greeted at home plate. He went 3 for 3 and scored two runs for Burlington County. CLEM MURRAY / Staff
Christian DeLuca is greeted at home plate. He went 3 for 3 and scored two runs for Burlington County. CLEM MURRAY / Staff
Posted: June 21, 2014

Hours before graduating from Cinnaminson High, Christian DeLuca enjoyed a solid showing at the plate in his first appearance at Citizens Bank Park.

The centerfielder went 3 for 3 and scored two runs Thursday to help lift Burlington County to a 6-5 victory over Suburban One League National/Bicentennial in the semifinals of the 29th annual Carpenter Cup Classic baseball tournament.

"I was a little nervous coming here, but it was a great experience," said the 6-foot, 210-pounder. "We have good team chemistry, we're playing well, and we're having a lot of fun."

DeLuca singled and scored in the third inning, did the same in the fourth, and opened the sixth with a double to left field. In three tournament games, he is hitting a team-high .700 (7 for 10) with five runs, three doubles, and two RBIs.

"He's our No. 3 hitter, and we're not moving him from that spot," said Burlington coach Rich Doppler, the boss at Northern Burlington. "I knew coming in what he could do. He's a fantastic player."

Burlington will try for its fourth Carpenter Cup title since 2006 when it meets Jersey Shore, which handed Delaware County a 5-3, eight-inning defeat in Thursday's other semifinal. The final will be Friday at 10 a.m. at Citizens Bank Park.

DeLuca and Co. jumped out to a 5-0 lead, scoring three runs in the second and two in the third. Third baseman Tyler O'Dell (Northern Burlington) highlighted the second with a bases-clearing, two-run single to left. (The last run scored on an error.)

Catcher Adam Rapp, also from Northern Burlington, delivered RBI singles in the third and fourth to aid an 11-hit attack.

After Suburban One National/Bicentennial closed the gap to 6-4 in the sixth, junior lefthander Brian Marconi (Cherokee) struck out five while allowing one run over the last three frames.

DeLuca will play baseball and study physical therapy at the University of the Sciences. "The team hasn't won many games lately, but there's a lot of young talent there," the 18-year-old said. "I want to do what I can to make it a winning culture."

Devon Prep first baseman Sean Phelan (2 for 3, RBI), Abington catcher Nick Bein (2 for 3, RBI), and Pennsbury outfielder Justin Jacko (2 for 2) keyed Suburban One National/Bicentennial's 12-hit showing.

Jersey Shore, made up of players from Monmouth and Ocean Counties, did all its scoring in the fifth while erasing a 2-0 deficit against Delaware County. The game was stopped after eight innings because of rain.

Delaware County, which was seeking its first Carpenter Cup crown, was held to three hits by five Jersey Shore hurlers.


robrien@phillynews.com

@ozoneinq

www.inquirer.com/ozone

Burlco . 032 100 000 - 6 11 1

Nat/Bicen. 003 001 100 - 5 12 4

WP: Ryan Shinn. LP: Tim Brennan. 2B: B-Christian DeLuca; SOLNB-Brendan Campbell, Sean Phelan, Zach Zsumigala, Nick Bein. 3B: SOLNB-Jay Mulvey.

Jersey Shore 000 050 00 - 5 7 1

Delco 000 200 01 - 3 3 0

WP: Shane McCarthy. LP: Ashton Raines. 2B: JS-Al Molina.

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