By KEVIN ROBERTS
Brendan Kavanagh blew a fastball past his final batter for a strikeout in the second game of a July 8 doubleheader against Avon at Southington High School.
Teammates rushed toward Kavanagh, carrying every vessel of water and ice they could find. It seemed like the majority of those in the Southington American Legion Post 72 dugout knew what Kavanagh had accomplished, except for the right-handed hurler himself.
“I had no idea, zero idea. Apparently I threw a no-hitter, I just found out with an ice bath. That’s how the night’s going so far,” Kavanagh said.
Kavanagh did indeed throw a no-hitter in a 10-0 victory over Avon. His performance made up for a tough 5-3 loss by Southington in the first game. Kavanagh struck out eight and walked four in his gem. One Avon batter also reached base via error.
“It feels very good. I’ve never thrown a no-hitter in my life, so that was actually awesome,” Kavanagh said. “And I had no idea, and they kept it so I had no idea, so that was super cool, too. Shout-out to the teammates.”
Coach Marc Verderame said he thought Kavanagh had good stuff, despite a tough start in the bottom of the first inning. Avon was designated as the home team in the second game of the doubleheader.
“I’m proud of him. He didn’t have it early, he walked a couple guys in the first inning, fought out of it,” Verderame said. “He had his stuff, sometimes your stuff is a little bit too good and you can’t control it.”
Kavanagh walked the first batter he faced in the first, then put another on with two outs. He was bailed out of the inning when the Avon runner at third attempted to steal home and was tagged out by catcher Will Marshall.
In the second inning, Kavanagh again walked a batter with no outs and another with two outs. Kavanagh got a grounder to first baseman Josh Panarella, who threw to his pitcher covering first to end the threat.
Kavanagh worked around a one-out error in the third inning and picked up two strikeouts. The error was the last baserunner Kavanagh had to deal with. Fourteen straight outs were recorded by Kavanagh, including six of his eight strikeouts.
“He found it, the guys played great ‘D’ behind him, you always have a few plays here and there,” Verderame said. “I’m proud of him, he deserves it.”
To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Kevin Roberts, email him at KRoberts@SouthingtonObserver.com