With a squad made up primarily of freshmen, the St. John Vianney High School Junior American Legion team has been very competitive this season. The young Lancers are 5-3 with 10 games remaining, and according to coach Kevin Ruffler, the team appears to be hitting its stride. “Because of all the rainouts, we’re playing four or five games a week, and that’s actually helped us,” Ruffler said. “Our hitters are getting in the groove, and we have enough pitching to handle the load.” Ruffler has eight players who can pitch: Sal Cessaro, Steve Fernicola, Steven Lamarca, Shaun McTigue, Joe Melchionna, Nicholas Nittoli, Peter Pabon and Anthony Pavia. Lamarca and McTigue are both lefties. With so many arms, the Lancers can easily handle the extra games. The team’s top hitters include power-hitting first baseman Matt Georgiana, catcher Kevin Ruffler, center fielder Mike Urciuoli, Cessaro, McTigue and Nittoli. The SJV contingent is also strong defensively up the middle, with Cessaro and Frank DiRoma splitting time at second base, David Goodman at shortstop, Urciuoli in center and Ruffler behind the dish. Other members of the team include outfielders Kevin McInerney, Jordan Moskowitz and catcher/outfielder Michael Trapasso. Though the summer season is only about halfway through, Ruffler expects his team to be vastly improved by the time the season concludes. The squad has already shown improvement and is looking forward to its final 10 games as a means of continuing that process. “I think this is a pretty strong team, and they’ve been coming together over the last several games,” coach Ruffler said.