Thursday, April 12, 2018

Wolcott baseball gets big hits, big outs when needed in win over Naugatuck

Trey Nastri had two doubles (three hits total) and scored twice
in Wolcott's 7-1 home win over Naugatuck. (Copyright, Sports on CT-69)
There were times when Wednesday's Wolcott baseball 7-1 win over Naugatuck could have turned into a loss.
The visiting Greyhounds left two runners on in the first inning, the bases loaded in the third, and two more runners in the fourth. Naugatuck has struggled offensively, and it has been frustrating. Part of that frustration came from Wolcott starter Brett Adams, who wiggled out of jams with just one run of damage on his ledger.
Brett Adams picked up a win in four innings in his first start as an Eagle.
Adams and his family moved to Wolcott from Oklahoma. They were looking
for a good baseball program, and that's when they heard about Wolcott.
(Copyright, Sports on CT-69)
Adams' pitching and the Eagle defense kept the game tied at 1-1 until the bottom of the fourth inning, then the offense came through in a big way. Wolcott sent eight batters to the plate, scored four runs and took control of the game. The big blow was a two-run double down the right field line by Tino Ciarlo with the bases loaded. Ciarlo's two-bagger gave the Eagles a 3-1 lead.
Ciarlo doesn't get his chance without the effort of his teammates. Jack Drewry led off with a double to right center field. Trey Nastri was walked, then Anthony Ligi put down a perfect bunt that turned into a hit, loading the bases for Ciarlo.
The right-hand hitting Ciarlo jumped on an outside offering from Naugatuck starter Zack Royka and deposited it down the right field line. Owen Yost, running for Drewry, scored and was followed by Nastri.
Ligi scored on a passed ball, and after a Nick Longo lineout to shortstop, Jeff Nicol's sacrifice fly brought home Ciarlo to make it 5-1.
Wolcott came back onto the field in the fifth ahead by four runs, but Naugatuck attempted to quash any thoughts of a "shutdown inning." Tommy Ayash singled and Mike Plasky was hit by a pitch, signaling the end of Adams' first start as an Eagle on the mound.
Drewry came on in relief, but a passed ball moved Ayash to third and Plasky to second. That's where those two runners stayed. Drewry struck out the next two batters looking with curveballs, then got a grounder to Ethan Gillotti at shortstop to keep a spark from turning into a potentially big fire.
Naugatuck had runners on first and second with one out in the sixth, but Drewry got a flyout to Ligi in left and another grounder to Gillotti to escape the jam.
Wolcott added two more runs in the bottom of the sixth. Longo singled leading off, then Jeff Nicol doubled to right center to put runners on second and third. After the first out was made, Nick Trager's hard grounder turned into an error and scored Longo. Pinch-runner Branden Casanova came in on a fielder's choice off the bat of Dane Hassan to make the score 7-1.
In a final snapshot of how Naugatuck's day went, the Greyhounds smacked a pair of line drives in the top of the seventh, only to see them head straight toward Eagle fielders for outs.
That's how the game of baseball works. On Wednesday, Wolcott made big pitches, got big hits and improved to 4-0. Next up is a trip to Tennessee for games against David Crockett and Chuckey-Doak high schools. Crocket is the Alma mater of Wolcott head coach Tary Scott. More on that trip soon.

GALLERY: Click here to see my photos from Wednesday's game.

WATCH: My video of Tino Ciarlo's two-run double in the fourth inning.

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