Opportunities slip by Naugatuck in state tourney

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Greyhounds-colorSquareRIDGEFIELD — The Naugatuck baseball team lost its Class LL first-round state tournament game to Ridgefield, 2-1, on Tuesday afternoon.

Despite a solid pitching performance from Naugy starter Ricky Plasky, the ‘Hounds struggled to string together any hits. Plasky allowed two unearned runs in the first and settled down to finish the game with four strikeouts and no walks.

“Ricky shut down one of the top hitting teams in Class LL,” Naugatuck head coach Tom Deller said. “He’s been doing that all year long.”

Ridgefield improved to 17-5, while Naugy finished its season at 9-13 overall with a 9-10 mark in the Naugatuck Valley League.

A two-out error in the first allowed Ridgefield’s first run to score. Phil Sammon, the next batter, drove in the eventual winning run with a single.

Plasky kept Ridgefield off the scoreboard the rest of the way.

Josh Aviles had two singles in the game, while Jason Bradley drove in Naugatuck’s only run with a double in the fourth to plate Travis Wyant. Naugy had six hits on the afternoon but could not seize multiple opportunities to tie the game.

Ridgefield starter Devin Martin made big pitches to get key outs. Martin struck out eight, walked four and escaped two potential damaging innings.

In the fifth, the ‘Hounds loaded the bases with two walks and dropped third strike, but Spencer Dreher struck out to end the threat. Naugy’s Scott Sill and Dreher singled in the seventh before Matt Bradley made the final out of the game.

“We definitely had some opportunities,” Deller said. “We just couldn’t punch across a run.”

Plasky also did a nice job of pitching around trouble. In the fourth, he pitched out of a second-and-third, no-out situation. In the sixth, Plasky induced a fly out to left and ended the frame by stranding runners on first and third.

“I’m pleased with today, other than the fact we lost,” Deller said. “We showed we can play with one of the better teams in the class. But we don’t want to just play with people; we want to win.”