Wilton players power Stamford baseball team to tourney title

The Stamford Fury 12U baseball team, including longtime Wilton friends and Little League teammates Everett Andersen, Anthony Passaniti, Sam Strazza and Ryan van Heyst, brought home the championship of the Diamonds for Mom 12U 50/70 baseball tournament, held this past weekend at Sportsplex in North Branford.

The Fury was just 1-1 in the preliminary round on Saturday, including a dominant pitching performance by van Heyst in the victory, giving the team a difficult path against higher-seeded teams to the final.

However, the Fury were up to the task, spanking the Middlebury Mud Dogs, 10-2, and avenging a first-round defeat in dominating fashion, 13-4, over the CT Blue Jays, setting up the finale versus the Mystic Clippers.

The Wilton boys collectively had a terrific weekend, batting a combined .442 with 11 RBI while saving their best for the title game. Andersen got the Fury on the scoreboard against Mystic with an RBI single in the first, and in the fourth Strazza’s RBI single and Passaniti’s two-run double broke a 1-1 tie and gave the Fury the lead for good.

Starting pitcher Andersen limited the Clippers to two runs through five innings, fanning seven while walking none, with help from van Heyst, who anchored the defense at shortstop. After the first two runners in the sixth reached on errors, Passaniti came out of the bullpen to shut the door and preserve the 6-4 victory.