Naugy topples Wilby, then walks off on Crosby

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BY KEN MORSE
CITIZEN’S NEWS

The Naugatuck baseball team got off to a 2-0 start before the rains came and halted the first week of the season.
With several makeup games added to an already tight schedule, the team with the abundance of pitching will survive the onslaught.
“That is one of the strengths of our team,” said Naugatuck head coach Joe Iannotti. “We have a lot of pitchers and when the games start piling up we should be able to weather the storm.”
Alex Teixeira gets the chain after belting a home run
Naugy began with a 14-0 win over Wilby on opening day, March 30. Damon Abate went the first three innings on the hill, surrendering two hits and striking out six. James Crilly went the final two innings, striking out three.
Alex Teixeira banged out two hits and drove in three runs to pace the offensive attack. Things came undone for Wilby when Naugy struck for 10 runs in a third inning uprising. Dylan Sepulveda and Abate unloaded two-run doubles during the onslaught that decided the game.
“We have experienced leadership with senior captains Teixeira, Sepulveda, Andrew Tyszka and junior captain Kevin Cestari,” said Iannotti. “Andrew is our No. 1 pitcher, with juniors Damon, Kevin, James and Colton Hoffman all with varsity experience last year.”
Naugatuck rallied for a 3-2 walkoff win over Oxford on April 1. Tyszka went all seven innings, yielding just two hits and striking out 12 batters.
Teixeira belted a solo home run in the fourth to put Naugy on the board. The All-Iron first baseman also drilled a game-tying single in the seventh to score Nick Montini and knot the game at 2-2. The bases were loaded when Hoffman was hit by a pitch, chasing home the winning run.
“It’s a nice way to start the year off,” Iannotti said. “Our kids battled to the end and that’s what it’s going to take in a very competitive league. I’m really confident in our pitching that it will give us the opportunity to be successful and get us the win. We need to get the bats going to help our pitchers out.”