It's been more than three years since South Jersey has seen organized baseball at Surf Stadium, formerly known as The Sandcastle.

The Surf's departure in 2009 has left a void in the local sports scene, but now a major tournament is underway and bringing baseball back to town in a big way. The once-abandoned venue has since received a major facelift, and is now the proud host of the 2012 Mid-Atlantic Regionals, featuring some of the best Babe Ruth teams from New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York, Delaware and Maryland.

The Atlantic Shore Babe Ruth team is aiming for another run deep into the Babe Ruth World Series. We talked with one Devil from inside the press-box at Surf Stadium, only hours before his first pitching appearance.  Find out what goes on in his mind just before a big start, what the players think of the field conditions on a hot day, and why there may be some bitterness brewing between Atlantic Shore and a team they've faced nearly 10 times over the past two summers.

Press of Atlantic City sports reporter Mike McGarry joined us to comment on the return of baseball to the shore resort. He explained why it took so long for the game to come back, and why Atlantic City should still be considered an ideal destination for teams to develop future major-league talent.

We also check in with Hall of Fame reporter Tom Williams for the latest on the tournament. He comments on the Atlantic Shore team's impact on South Jersey, and previews the rest of the Mid-Atlantic Regionals at Surf Stadium.

The Egg Harbor Township High School football team made a big statement in 2011. Now they're got their sights set on even loftier goals this upcoming season. Their head coach, Tony DeRosa, joined us on the South Jersey Sports Report to reveal the program's offseason plans and how they plan on setting the tone against their opponents this fall.

Joel Novick is a Middle Township High School graduate who's now smashing the competition at Washington College. Find out what he's doing over summer break to improve his tennis game for his incoming junior season, and what it was like playing on the same team with his brothers, as a Cape-Atlantic League all-star.

And two high school athletes are getting ready for their senior campaigns while also giving back to the community. Find out how the pair of St. Augustine Hermits got the inspiration for a local basketball tournament, that's donating every dollar to the Boys and Girls Club of Atlantic City.

 

Listen to this week's show:

Joel Novick, Middle Twp. graduate & Washington College tennis player

Mike McGarry, Press of Atlantic City sports reporter

Kyle Gerace, Atlantic Shore Babe Ruth baseball

St. Augustine Hermits basketball

Tony DeRosa, head football coach, Egg Harbor Township High School

Tom Williams, South Jersey Hall of Fame sports writer