Dreher spurs Post 17 to victory with his bat, arm

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Zach Dreher belts a bases loaded two-out, two-run single that scored the eventual winning runs for the Naugatuck American Legion’s 7-5 win over Prospect-Beacon Falls on Tuesday. KEN MORSE
BEACON FALLS — Zach Dreher stepped to the plate with the bases loaded and two outs in the sixth inning looking to break a tie between Naugatuck Post 17 and Prospect-Beacon Falls Posts 194-25.

The stage was set for Dreher to give Naugatuck the lead Tuesday night at Woodland Regional High School, and he didn’t disappoint.
Dreher reached out and slammed a two-run single to center to score Anthony McKernan and Nolan Kinne, the eventual winning runs in a 7-5 Naugatuck Post 17 win over Prospect-Beacon Falls Posts 194-25.

Dreher finished the job on the mound, throwing three innings in relief of starter Tyler Lafo as Post 17 improved to 4-2 on the season.

“We are on a little bit of a roll,” Naugatuck coach Bob Dibble said. “We are making some great plays in the field and we continue to get timely hitting. Zach came in and did a nice job on the mound and we have shown the ability to come back from a deficit.”

Kyle Georgia gave a game effort on the hill for the Prospect-Beacon Falls in his first game in over a year as Post 194 fell to 2-4 on the season.

“Kyle did a great job for us tonight after not throwing for over a year,” Posts 194-25 coach Jim Augelli said.

Naugatuck came into the game fired up after winning a 1-0 nail-biter on Monday over Oxford. Adam Neveski was lights-out, throwing a two-hit shutout and Dreher scored the only run of the game in the bottom of the sixth on a hit by Matt Zahornasky.

PBF was on a bit of an upswing as well after coming back to defeat Monroe on Monday in a last-at-bat rally. Brian Langdon went the distance on the hill to keep PBF in the game.

Monroe trailed by one run in the last inning before belting a two-run homer to take the lead. Posts 194-25 came to bat trailing by a run and staged a comeback. Anthony Ross drove in Mike Masulli with the tying run and scored the game winner on a throwing error for the 6-5 victory.

“We had a nice win the other day against Monroe and again tonight we continued to hit the ball,” Augelli said. “That was the problem last year we didn’t hit enough but in all of our games we have been out hitting the opposition.”

Naugatuck grabbed the quick lead Tuesday night, scoring two runs in the first inning. Matt D’Agnone and Dreher scored on a two-run double by Zahornasky. Post 17 pushed the advantage to 3-0 in the second inning when Zack Mercer singled and scored on an RBI hit from D’Agnone.

Posts 194-25 came out swinging in the fourth and plated four runs to take over the lead. Mike Diurno, Ryan McKay, Nick Brown and Anthony Ross all singled and scored but the biggest hit of the inning was the two-run double by Georgia with two outs.

Naugatuck managed to get it right back and tie the game in its next at-bat when Arber Mehmedi hit a two-out RBI single to score D’Agnone.

Post 17 took the lead for good with a two-run sixth inning on the bases loaded hit by Dreher to make it a 6-4 game.

PBF continued to show they could put the bat on the ball as they closed the gap in the bottom of the sixth. Masulli busted a leadoff double and Anthony Scirpo followed with a single. A fielder’s choice sent the run across and Naugatuck just missed an around-the-horn double play.

Post 17 tacked on an insurance run in the seventh for the 7-5 final margin. Mehmedi drew a walk and Mike Burns reached on a sacrifice bunt when the throw was late to second. Mercer unloaded a blast to center field for a double to score Mehmedi.