Preseason Team Preview: Wayne Hills

New Jersey Staff

High School:
Wayne Hills
Head Coach:
Brian Gelalia
2015 Record: 15-13

Our first Preseason Outlook starts off with a bang from Passaic County with the Patriots of Wayne Hills High School. Head coach Brian Gelalia has a lot to look forward to this spring, as he returns seven key players from last year‚??s 15-13 squad. The Patriots will lean heavily on their senior leadership. 2016 RHP Austin Phillips (Marist) will be the workhorse this year. The 6-foot-3, righty has command of four pitches, and will routinely sit 85-87 mph with his fastball ‚?? definitely more juice in the tank as he keeps moving forward. 2016 RHP Ryan Passaro (DeSales) will also play a major role in the Pats‚?? pitching staff. Passaro throws from a¬† ¬ĺ arm-angle and uses plus command producing weak offensive contact. The two arms give Wayne Hills a very formidable 1-2 punch, and have the ability to carry the Patriots to county and sectional championships.

Top offensive guys returning for the Patriots include seniors SS/P Dan Abate (Monmouth), OF Joe Curcio (LIU-Brooklyn), and OF Joe Simone (Rider). On paper, the Patriots offense will look to put pressure on their opponents with their plus speed as a team (Abate led the state in triples last year). Expect big contributions from 2017 John Barone. Barone has electric stuff on the bump, along with a power breaker to finish off batters. If Barone can contribute in big ways to a pitching staff that is chock-full of strike throwers and an offense that can easily turn doubles into triples, this team could be very dangerous come late May.

Coach Brian Gelalia will lean heavily on his seniors to set the tone for the season, and if everything comes together in May, this could very easily be a team celebrating on a Toms River diamond in June. However, it will be a tough hill to climb, especially with Don Bosco, Bergen Catholic, Northern Highlands, and cross-town rival Wayne Valley, on the schedule just to name a few.

Head Coach Bio
+ Brian Gelalia (WPUNJ ‚??08, NV/Old Tappan ‚??03)
+ 2nd Year head coach at Wayne Hills
+ Assistant coach at NV/Old Tappan 2007-2009, 2014
+ Assistant coach at Wayne Hills 2011-13

Fast Facts about Team/Coaches
+ Pitching coach Rob Delaney made his MLB Debut for the Minnesota Twins vs. Texas Rangers on 9/4/2006.
+ Head coach Brian Gelalia graduated from Old Tappan HS (Bergen Co) and played his college ball at William Paterson University (Wayne, NJ - Passaic County)

Current Players Committed
+ Dan Abate (3B/SS/RHP) ‚?? Monmouth
+ Dan Colon (3B/1B) - Indiana State
+ Joe Curcio (OF) - LIU-Brooklyn
+ Ryan Passaro (RHP) - DeSales
+ Austin Phillips (RHP) - Marist
+ Joe Simone (OF) - Rider

Other Notable Contributors
+ Brian Marcus (2B/SS/RHP)
+ Dylan Habeeb (C/OF)

Biggest Matchups in 2016 
@ Wayne Valley - 4/6
@ Bergen Catholic - 4/9
vs. Northern Highlands - 4/16
@ Mount Olive - 4/21
@ Don Bosco - 4/29
@ Lakeland 5/2

Team Rival
Wayne Valley

Notable Program Alumni
Mike Abate - 2 Time All-NJAC Player (William Paterson University)

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