NEWTOWN — South-West Conference champion Newtown and its starting pitcher Kyle Wilcox ended Naugatuck’s baseball season on Tuesday afternoon in the first round of the Class LL state tournament.
Wilcox struck out 16 and tossed a complete-game gem to help No. 13 Newtown defeat the No. 20 Greyhounds, 3-0. Naugy finished the season with an 11-10 record.
“We had our opportunities, but we just couldn’t get the hits,” Naugatuck head coach Tom Deller said.
Zac Mercer had the only hit of the game for the Greyhounds, who loaded the bases with one out in the fourth and put runners on first and second in the seventh. Wilcox escaped both jams.
Adam Neveski pitched into the sixth and took the loss for Naugy. Neveski had been inactive the last three weeks due to illness and toughed his way into the sixth in 90-degree heat.
“Adam did a really nice job to that point,” Deller said. “He’s been our best pitcher all year long.”
Neveski helped turn a double play in the first to reduce the damage after facing a first-and-third, no-out situation. Neveski fielded a comebacker and threw to Kyle Lopes, who completed the turn to Seth Mulhall.
He traded a run for two outs — but it was the only run the Hawks would need, despite the Greyhounds’ solid defense.
“We didn’t kill ourselves defensively like we have in some games this year,” Deller said.
The right-hander Wilcox, who has committed to play at Bryant, has been clocked at 91 mph.
Newtown defeated one of the top teams in the state, Pomperaug, 18-1, last week to win its conference championship.
The ‘Hounds, who finished one game out of the Naugatuck Valley League tournament, held their own with one of the SWC’s best, taking some of the sting out of the season-ending loss.
“All in all, I’d have to say I was pleased with how the guys played today, at least as pleased as you can be after a loss,” Deller said.