Shelton High senior right-hander Mike Cowell threw a no-hitter against North Haven High in a 3-0 Gael win in the SCC quarterfinals on Tuesday afternoon.
Cowell faced just one batter over the minimum, striking out six and walking none, in his second no-hit masterpiece of the season. The Fordham-bound ace, who improved to 7-1, no hit Branford High earlier in the season.
“It was important for us to come out and get off to a good start,” Cowell said. “I threw the ball well today. It was an important win for us in the tournament…
“It’s always in the back of your head (the no-hitter). As a pitcher, you’re not really concerned with that. You’re more concerned with getting the win for your team.”
This time around, he helped the third-seeded Gaels punch their ticket to Thursday’s SCC semifinals at Piurek Field, where they will face either second-seeded Fairfield Prep or No. 7 seed Career Magnet of New Haven.
The only two batters to reach base for sixth-seeded North Haven (11-10) were Giovanni Torres and Joe Ireland, who both reached on errors. The Indians did not a hit a ball out of the infield the entire game.
Justin Lynch’s RBI double drove in Cowell, who walked against North Haven starter Mike Kurk, in the bottom of the first to provide Shelton with the only run it needed. Paul Salley doubled and scored on a throwing error in the fourth and Cowell doubled in Chris Kanios in the bottom of the fifth to account for the other two runs. Craig McNamara and Salley had two hits apiece for Shelton (16-5).
“They knew with Michael getting the ball today, if we scored a few runs we were going to be in good shape to possibly win the game,” Shelton coach Scott Gura said. “He was very efficient. He threw 79 pitches. He only threw 20 balls the entire game.”
In the other SCC semifinal on Thursday in West Haven, top-seeded Notre Dame of West Haven will face either Amity High of Woodbridge or Sheehan High of Wallingford at 7 p.m.
“We are seven innings away from the conference championship,” Gura said. “That’s the way we look at it. We haven’t been there since 2012 and we won it in 2010.”