Baseball: Wilton's season opener pushed back again

One of the most difficult aspects of building any varsity-level high school team is carving out a squad from the legion of players trying out.

Those tryouts and subsequent cuts are now complete, having forced some of the most challenging decisions for Wilton High baseball head coach Tim Eagen and his staff. What remains is reshaping and honing this year’s varsity club into a competitive, FCIAC tournament-bound club.

It would be nice to think that the whole knotty process could be accompanied by at least decent weather. Wrong. The Warriors have been outside only four times and played one scrimmage.

Wilton's original season opener, on April 1 at Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy, was postponed.

The revised season opener, scheduled for today against Weston, has also been postponed (to April 15) due to field conditions.

The season opener will now take place — hopefully— on Monday, at home against Westhill, at 3.

“It’s the hardest time of the season because you have to make judgments based on playing inside all the time,” said Eagen. “We’ve had one scrimmage (against Darien) and I thought we did well since it was the first game we played with only two practices outside — and those were on the outfield grass.”

Wilton won the contest, 3-2. After four errors led to two unearned Darien runs in the first, Warrior pitchers threw shutout baseball the rest of the way. Billy Black, the team’s ace, worked out some first-inning kinks, followed by Cole Lipsky, Ben Rusin and Ryan Gabriele, who looked sharp as they stifled the Blue Wave.

On offense, first baseman Jack Dooley crunched two RBI doubles while Jack Gioffre brought in another run with a sacrifice fly.

As it stands now, Eagen will take the following roster into the 2017 season:

Outfielders – Matt D’Elisa, Drew Connolly, Henry Stremcki, Justin Sorbo, Brandon Zheng;

Infielders — Collin Kahal, Dillon Lifrieri, Kyle Phillips, Jack Gioffre, Ryan Gabriele;

Catchers — Jack DiNanno, Cole Judelson, Matt LaMetta;

Pitchers — Bill Black, Ben Rusin, Cole Lipsky, Ryan Gabriele, Matt D’Elisa.