Trumbull wins, St. Joseph falls in FCIAC semifinals
Mat DeRienzo singled with the bases loaded in the bottom of the eighth inning to drive in the winning run when coach Phil Pacelli’s Trumbull High baseball team defeated Greenwich High, 5-4, on Wednesday night to advance to play Fairfield Warde for the FCIAC title on Saturday at 12 p.m. at the Ballpark at Harbor Yard.
For the fifth-seeded Eagles, the win over No. 8 Greenwich earned them a third straight trip to the championship game.
“That was a huge hit for Mat, and a big win for all these seniors,” Pacelli said. “We had 10 seniors play a role in this, and for them to be playing in a third title game speaks to their hard work and toughness.”
With one out in the eighth, Jake Levison beat out an infield hit by the third base bag, and went to second on a high throw to first base.
Colin Keyes was intentionally walked before Avery Santos hit a shallow fly ball to center, which Zach Monick chased down but couldn’t handle to load the bases.
DeRienzo’s single to right-center, Trumbull’s seventh hit in the game, came off relief pitcher Mike Gennaro and settled the contest.
“It’s a tough loss, but I am still proud of my kids,” Greenwich High head coach Phil Tarantino said. “They played hard and battled in extra innings, but Trumbull got the big hit.
“It was a great high school game and hats off to Trumbull because they played well. We are two very similar teams. We both have two pitchers that are very strong.”
The Eagles built a run in the home first after Liam Moore led off with a double to right field, went to third on a wild pitch, and scored on Levison’s sacrifice fly.
Greenwich tied the game in the third off starter Avery Santos on a one-out walk to Alex LoParco and a two-out single by GHS starter J.T. Hintzen.
Trumbull took the lead back in the third. Connor Broderick beat out a one-out misplay at third and beat the throw by a step and went to second on a wild pitch.
Levison delivered a two-out RBI liner to center and then stole second. Keyes followed with a shot to right field, that found Kyle Dunster come up throwing to nail Levison at the plate to end the inning.
Greenwich tied the game at 2-2 in the fourth on a single by Jon Dreher and a two-out roller by Monick that hugged the first base line before being thrown away by Avery to plate Dreher.
Greenwich scored in the sixth on Dunster’s bases-loaded single to edge in front 3-2, but a fine throw from Moore in left field to Zach Sagar, was relayed home to Carlos Garrido, who tagged out Jack Gulliani trying to score.
Moore worked Hintzen for his first walk to start the bottom of the sixth and stole second.
That put him in position to score on Levison’s grounds-rule double that bounced over the wall in left field to tie the game.
Levison took a good secondary lead and moved to third on a short wild pitch. That put him in position to get a good jump and cross the plate on Keyes’ RBI roller to shortstop, which handcuffed Kego Fujikura, who was playing in.
Trumbull took that 4-3 lead into the seventh, but Sean Marks singled between a pair of strikeouts by Santos.
Marks stole second on the second strikeout and scored when Dreher served a soft single in front of a charging Moore in left.
Greenwich had a pair of two-out singles off Trumbull reliever Niko Arganese in the eighth, before Sagar fielded a ripped shot by Hintzen to third and stepped on the bag.
No. 6 Warde defeated No. 2 St. Joseph, 4-1, on Reece Maniscalco’s one-hitter in the second game of the twin bill at Harbor Yard.
Helped by four Cadets errors, the Mustangs scored a run in the first, second, fourth and seventh innings.
St. Joseph made it 2-1 in the home second, but left the bases loaded. Mark Hirschbeck opened the frame with a single, and a pair of walks and a hit batter around two strikeouts, set the stage for the run to score on a wild pitch.