Silver linings were hard to come by for the Wilton High baseball team in Friday’s 14-4 home loss against Greenwich.
Eight Wilton errors led to seven unearned Greenwich runs. Throw in seven walks, a few wild pitches, and a hit batsman and the messiness bulges even farther.
“It’s hard to believe. I just can’t understand it,” said a perplexed Wilton head coach Tim Eagen. “I can’t remember anything like this. It’s hard to know what to do right now.”
The Warriors did pick up a victory the next morning without taking the field: Bassick had to forfeit Saturday’s scheduled game in Bridgeport, leaving Wilton with a 7-6 overall record going into the final two weeks of the regular season.
What made matters so puzzling on Friday against Greenwich was that the Warriors were coming off a two-game run of excellent defense. Furthermore, Greenwich (4-11, 4-9 FCIAC) has had major problems fighting to stay away from the basement of the conference standings.
Through four innings, it was a ball game. The Cardinals drew first blood in their initial at-bat. An RBI base hit by Jackson Blanchard, one of four singles to open the inning, and a bases-loaded walk to Henry Jonokuchi put Wilton down 2-0 with the bases full. But the Warriors were able to turn a well-executed double play to get out of the inning.
Greenwich went down in order in the second, but in the third the Wilton defense caved. One-out infield errors and a walk loaded the bases. Another bobble allowed one run and a looping fly ball single to center by Chris Genaro brought in two more. Nick Sheehan replaced hard-luck starter Ethan Leinberger (2-3), retiring the next two batters to get out of the inning.
Trailing by five runs, the Warriors started a two-out rally when Sheehan walked. Lucas Uriarte’s long fly ball down the right-field line dropped in, scoring Sheehan, and Kyle Phillips’ base hit to right center ushered Uriarte home. A passed ball and Drew Phillips’ infield hit brought in the third run.
Winning pitcher Ian Colalucci got a pop-up to end the inning, but Wilton had momentum and was back in the game, trailing 5-3.
And the Warriors stayed there despite a Greenwich run in the fourth that scored when Jonokuchi dumped a soft line drive just over third base, driving in Sean Pratley. Colalucci then shut down Wilton one-two-three in the bottom of the inning, striking out two batters.
Greenwich added two runs in the top of fifth on an RBI single by Daniel Perez, who later scored on a wild pitch. Again, the Warrior offense couldn’t respond, going down in order in the bottom of the fifth. That set the stage for the two ugly final innings.
An error, two walks, a wild pitch and another error gifted Greenwich three unearned runs without a hit in the top of the sixth, leaving Wilton trailing 11-3.
In the bottom of the sixth, Luca Wentzel delivered a two-out, pinch-hit single before moving to second on a wild pitch and scoring on Cole Judelson’s base hit to center.
But the Cardinals answered with three runs on just one hit in the top of the seventh to go ahead 14-4. Three walks, a hit batter, a wild pitch, and a sacrifice fly did the damage as Greenwich ended the scoring.