By KEVIN ROBERTS
Southington baseball had a power surge in the last week of the regular season. After hitting a single home run in the first 18 games, the Blue Knights smacked three long balls in their final contests, wins over NW Catholic and Conard at home.
Southington knocked off NW Catholic 9-0 on May 20, then blew out Conard 14-1 on May 21. The Knights finished the regular season 17-3 and earned the No. 3 seed in the Class LL state tournament. Southington was scheduled to host No. 30 New Britain in a first round game this week. Check the CIAC tournament website for more information.
Win over NW Catholic
MAY 20—The Knights held their annual “Hits 4 Hope” game against the Lions and entertained those who were in attendance, many of whom wore pink to raise cancer awareness.
“It’s our eighth year of it,” coach Charlie Lembo said. “These game jerseys were purchased eight years ago, and they’re only worn once a year. I get them back, they stay in good shape.”
The jerseys have pink on both shoulders, along with a pink ribbon on the back. The start time for the game had to be moved up two and a half hours due to the threat of rain, and that may have kept the crowd down a little bit, Lembo said.
Those who were at the game saw Southington smack 11 hits, including a home run off the bat of Kevin McIntyre (two hits, walk, run scored). That homer was the second of the season for the Knights.
“Kevin gets the second one today, and the one Kevin hit was a bomb,” Lembo said. “Balls don’t get out of here too often. That was hit hard. That was a line drive, and it just kept going.”
Jake DelMonte had two singles, a double, a walk, three runs scored and two RBI while Andrew Paradis singled, doubled, walked and drove in a run. J.T. Martin drove in two runs while Jack Meade walked twice, stole a base and scored a run.
On the mound, Vinny Spizzoucco threw five innings of one-hit ball (6 strikeouts, 2 walks) to move to 5-0 on the season. Jason Krar threw a scoreless sixth while Brendan Kavanaugh added a scoreless seventh. Krar struck out one and neither he nor Kavanaugh allowed a hit.
“I’m happy overall with the way we pitched, I’m happy with the way we played defense,” Lembo said.
There were no errors from the Knights, who took care of business before the rain came in. Lembo said the maintenance crew has been doing a tremendous job of getting the field ready all season.
“Overall, it was a good effort,” Lembo said. “We got to get back and play tomorrow, and then we’ll take probably a day off and then we’ll get ready for the state tournament.”
Two homers pace rout
MAY 21—Paradis and Kyle Leifert drilled home runs for the Knights in the five-inning victory over the Chieftains.
Leifert also doubled, scored two runs and drove in five for Southington. Paradis added a walk, and Jake Romano was 3-for-3 with two doubles and three runs scored. Meade had two hits and two RBI while Bryce Worth (double) and Jake Neuman each scored two runs.
Neuman pitched four innings of one-run ball to improve to 5-0 on the season. He gave up three hits, struck out five, walked one and hit one. Neuman gave up his first earned of the season. Krar struck out two in his one inning of relief.
To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Kevin Roberts, email him at KRoberts@SouthingtonObserver.com