Haddonfield coach Bob Bickel knew his team wasn't going to earn an at-large bid to the Joe Hartmann Diamond Classic.
"Just missed it, right?" Bickel said the other day.
The Bulldogs were on the outside looking in with a 10-6 record at the May 5 cutoff for the tournament selections. But maybe the rest of the field is lucky about that.
Haddonfield is one of South Jersey's hottest teams. The Bulldogs have won 11 of 12 since April 15, and they beat surging Moorestown by a 4-3 score on Saturday.
Moorestown had won nine in a row.
"We're all believing in each other," said junior righthander Jason Cavanaugh, who is 5-0 since the season opener and shut down heavy-hitting Audubon in a key victory for Haddonfield on May 5.
Haddonfield has gotten a big lift from the return of senior pitcher Matt Binder. Projected as the team's ace, Binder missed most of the first month with a sore elbow.
"We've been taking it slow with him but he's close to being ready to go," Bickel said.
Haddonfield will be watching the Diamond Classic. But the Bulldogs should be right in the mix in the South Jersey Group 2 tournament.
Group 4 preview? The Diamond Classic isn't the South Jersey Group 4 tournament. But it looks like a preview.
Four teams that figure to be in the mix for the South Jersey Group 4 title have advanced to Saturday's quarterfinals of the Diamond Classic.
Two will meet in what could be an advance of the South Jersey Group 4 title game.
Cherokee (14-2), the No. 1 team in The Inquirer Top 10, will face No. 3 Millville (13-4) in the quarterfinals on Saturday at Deptford. Those two will be among the favorites in the South Jersey Group 4 tournament, along with fellow Diamond Classic survivors Washington Township and Cherry Hill West.
No. 2 Washington Township (18-1) faces No. 8 St. Augustine (12-6) in the second game of Saturday's doubleheader at Deptford.
No. 7 Cherry Hill West (13-6) plays Sterling (13-3), which will be carrying the Colonial Conference and South Jersey Group 2 flag, in a quarterfinal at 10:30 a.m. at Washington Township.
South Jersey Group 4 looks loaded this season. Along with the No. 1, No. 2, No. 3 and No. 7 teams in the rankings, the sectional field also likely will include Eastern and Pennsauken and dangerous teams such as Shawnee, Atlantic City, Clearview, Williamstown and Toms River South.
Selection Saturday Celebration. St. Augustine senior pitcher Kevin Baxter said most of the team had gathered at senior Anthony Rodio's house on Saturday night, May 5, to await word on whether they had received an at-large bid to the Joe Hartmann Diamond Classic.
"We didn't think we were going to make it," Baxter said.
St. Augustine was 10-6 at the cutoff. But the Hermits beat Millville, 3-0, on Friday, May 4 and also had a victory over defending champion Buena. They got the bid.
"We were going crazy," Baxter said.
St. Augustine, which reached the Diamond Classic finals last year, opened play Saturday with a 13-0 win over Sacred Heart. Baxter threw a four-hit complete game, running his scoreless innings streak to 30.
"We wanted to show that we belong," St. Augustine coach Mike Bylone said.
Diamond Star. Holy Cross senior third baseman John Adryan has hit a home run in all four Diamond Classic games in which he has played.
As a sophomore, Adryan hit two home runs in a game against Moorestown and one in a game against Washington Township. As a junior, he hit a home run against St. Augustine.
On Saturday, Adryan hit a home run in a 4-2 victory over Buena in 10 innings.
Adryan, who has signed with Ohio University, will try to extended his streak on Saturday in the quarterfinals against Bishop Eustace.
Injury update. Gloucester Catholic junior righthander Mike Shawaryn, whose last decision was a 17-4 victory over Whittier, Calif., in the Bishop Gorman Easter Classic in Las Vegas on April 11, will undergo an MRI on Monday to check the status of his right elbow.
Shawaryn, who is projected as one of the state's top prospects in the class of 2013, is 2-0 this season with a no-hitter. He was 7-0 last season with a 1.56 ERA.
This and that. Gloucester Catholic's Pat Kane collected his 100th career hit on Tuesday against Deptford. . . . Delsea sophomore Bryan Dobzanski pitched a masterpiece Friday in a 1-0 victory over Group 4 power Toms River South. . . . Williamstown (12-7) has won four of five and visits Delsea (11-9) in a battle for first place in the Tri-County Royal on Monday. . . . GCIT (13-3) has won five in a row behind pitcher Chris Guinta, who has two of the victories. . . . Highland (10-6) has won four of five behind Joey Sigismondi, who has two pitching victories and four doubles in the surge.