WOODBRIDGE -- Last season, four senior pitchers took Amity as far as it could go. The Spartans allowed only three runs in five state tournament wins, and no one was better than right-hander Mike Concato. He tossed 21 shutout innings -- the last seven in a 4-0 win over Southington in the LL final.
Numbers will tell you that that staff was special. And Amity coach Sal Coppola is staying patient as the Spartans hope to build another one like it.
Friday, however, wasn't their day on the mound.
Amity committed a pair of errors, allowed eight runs over the first two innings and fell 10-7 to Fairfield Prep.
"I'm a big believer that we win and lose on defense and pitching," Coppola said. "If that was there today, I think that we have a different story."
Prep, the state's third-ranked team, improved to 10-1. Amity dropped to 5-5.
"The prior Amity teams, or any team in general, you score seven runs, you should win that game," Coppola said.
The Jesuits banged out 10 hits, including four in a six-run second, to beat Amity for the second time this year.
First baseman Shawn Blake had three of those hits, including a two-run home run off Ross Weiner in the first inning.
"One after another, each person keeps on picking each other up," said Blake, who had three RBIs. "We don't really have a weak spot in the order."
Amity responded with four runs off Dan Schmedlin in the bottom of the first, but its lead was short-lived.
In the top of the second, six of the first seven Prep batters reached base safely. The Jesuits had four hits, drew three walks and also scored runs on a balk and a throwing error on a potential double play.
"I feel bad for Ross," Coppola said. "He didn't pitch his best, but I think if we just get outs that inning, we're in the game. ... Unfortunately our defense let us down."
Down three runs, Amity squandered chances at the plate over the final two innings. The Spartans left the bases loaded in the sixth and stranded two more runners in the seventh. Right-hander John DelVecchio tossed 1 2/3 scoreless innings to earn the save. Read Full Article
"He's got a good attitude for a reliever," Prep coach Rudy Mauritz said of DelVecchio. "He's got the right mindset for it. He handles pressure very well. It doesn't seem to faze him."
Mauritz was pleased with the win, but he wants to see his squad execute better. Both Jesuits' errors led to Amity runs. The Spartans scored three times in the fourth to climb within 8-7 after a throwing error by third baseman Simon Whiteman.
"There were some things that we didn't do today and some things that they (Amity) didn't do today," the coach said.
FAIRFIELD PREP 260 020 0 -- 10 10 2
AMITY 400 300 0 -- 7 11 2
Records: Fairfield Prep 10-1; Amity 5-5. Batteries: FP -- Dan Schmedlin (W), Chase Mascolo (4), John DelVecchio (6, SV) and Jake Berry; A -- Ross Weiner (L), Douglas Rives (5) and Gerald Farace.