|Courtesy: Rider Sports Information|
|Release: November 18, 2016|
LAWRENCEVILLE, NJ – Rider University Baseball Head Coach Barry Davis has announced the written commitments of five student-athletes for the 2017-18 academic year. Jake Barbiere (Randolph, NJ/Randolph), Elias Gross (Bethlehem, PA/Liberty), Ray Pacella (Stony Point, NY/North Rockland), Lou Priolo (Voorhees, NJ/Eastern) and Vincent Vitacco (Staten Island, NY/Monsignor Farrell) will join the Broncs for the 2018 season.
“I am excited to announce five additions to our baseball program for the 2017-18 season,” said Davis. “Each of these young men are likely to contribute right away. In an effort to rebuild this roster, this class is critical to hitting the target. The expectations for this group are extremely high and they know it. We will continue to add to our roster throughout the year to fill areas of need.”
Barbiere is an infielder out of Raldolph (NJ) High School. A three-year varsity starter, Barbiere earned First Team All-Conference and First Team All-County as a junior. He was also named a Prep Baseball Report Top Prospect following his junior year and earned Team MVP.
Gross is a shortstop/pitcher out of Liberty High School in Bethlehem, PA. He won the Unsung Hero Award and was named player of the week by Lehigh Valley Live on two occasions. Gross also has extensive experience on the travel ball circuit, including two months playing with the Carrolwood Gators organization, with whom he was named to the IBC Baseball 2016 Summer National All-Tournament Team.
Pacella is a left-handed pitcher out of North Rockland High School and Stony Point, NY. In limited action as a junior, Pacella struck out nine in 6.2 innings pitched. In approximately 20 games pitched on the summer circuit, Pacella gave up just two runs. He also pitched in a Perfect Game tournament in Georgia for Wladyka Baseball against CBA Marucci American, striking out four in 4.1 innings pitched. In addition, he pitched for the OTB Pirates, pitching 14 scoreless innings, while striking out 15.
Priolo is an outfielder out of Eastern High School in Voorhees, NJ. A First Team All-Olympic American Conference and Carpenter Cup selection, Priolo was named to Third-Team All-State and Third-Team All-South Jersey. He served as team captain as a junior and has also achieved in the classroom, earning Academic Honor roll for 2014-15 and 2015-16. He also earned the Chemistry Academic Award of Excellence for 2015-16.
Vitacco is a right-handed pitcher out of Monsignor Farrell High School on Staten Island. He’s posted a 16-1 record, allowing just 19 runs in 134.1 innings for a 0.98 earned run average with 97 strikeouts over his three years. He’s also been stingy in the playoffs, with a 5-0 record and a 1.00 ERA. He was named to the Staten Island Advance All-Star Team as a junior, while also earning Monsignor Farrell’s Most Versatile Player Award. Vitacco also led the Lions to the CHSAA Championship as a sophomore. In addition, Vitacco has hit .325 over his three seasons at the plate.