The Wilton High softball team got great pitching, solid defense, and timely hitting to beat New Canaan, 3-1, on Monday afternoon at home, extending the Warriors’ unbeaten start to the season.
“We pushed them very hard in practice and it’s good to see that it’s paid off early in the season,” said Wilton head coach Brian Jacobs about his players. “We have a long way to go, but to come out of the gate 4-0 shows me that they’re focused on winning.
“We’ve had some players go down early with injuries, and we hope to have them back soon, but the other girls have stepped up and we didn’t miss a beat,” added Jacobs. “Although we didn’t score a lot today, I felt that everyone had good quality at-bats and looked good at the plate.”
Pitcher Claire Wilson turned in a complete game for the Warriors, allowing just one run while scattering six hits and striking out four. Wilson kept the New Canaan batters off balance with a variety of pitches.
“My raising pitch, drop, and curveballs were all working great today and it kept the hitters guessing what was coming,” said Wilson. “I’m smaller than most pitchers so I feel I have to work harder and focus on throwing strikes. I can throw a good fastball, but I have worked on developing several other pitches that I can get batters out with.”
Wilson’s pitching counterpart, New Canaan freshman Lauren Mellas, also turned in a quality start, giving up one run over four innings.
The Warriors went ahead with a run in the bottom of the second. Kate Shouvlin lined a triple to right center between two New Canaan outfielders and came in to score on a sacrifice fly by Elizabeth Butler.
The score remained 1-0 until the top of the fifth, when New Canaan (1-4) plated its lone run of the game. Kendall Somma led off with a single and advanced to second on a fielder’s choice. Adriana Annese then singled to score Somma and tie the game.
Wilton answered in the bottom of the inning to regain the lead. Brooke Bohacs reached on a dropped third strike and moved to second on a fielder’s choice. Lara Burke’s second single of the game brought home Bohacs to put the Warriors in front, 2-1.
Wilton added an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth. Sophia Strazza singled, Maya Farrell walked, and Butler came through with a two-out single for her second RBI of the game and a 3-1 lead.
New Canaan put two runners on base in the top of the seventh, but Wilson got a strikeout to end the game.
Notes: First baseman Julianna Russo (six) and centerfielder Hannah Belanger (four) combined for 10 put-outs for Wilton.