The Amity High baseball team erupted for 17 runs on 16 hits en route to a 17-1 win over Shelton High in the Class LL quarterfinals on Friday afternoon.
The No. 14 seed Spartans (19-7), the two-time defending Class LL state champions, will face Southington High (18-5) on Tuesday in the semifinals. Amity has beaten the Blue Knights in the past two state finals.
With both teams playing their third game in three days, Amity got a gem on the mound from sophomore left-hander Teddy Hague. Hague, who improved to 3-0 after the starting the season with Amity’s JV team, handcuffed the sixth-seeded Gaels (18-7) to the tune of four hits in six innings of work, before Brian Ronai closed the game out with a scoreless seventh.
Hague got plenty of run support, as Amity broke open up a relatively tight 3-1 contest with four runs in the fifth and 10 more in the sixth. Shelton starter Trey McLoughlin (3-3) pitched into the fifth, allowing seven runs on eight hits. Relievers Jordan Urbani and Mark Polkowski fared no better, as Amity sent 16 batters to the plate in the sixth. Carl Kopf came on to get the last out of the sixth, before retiring Amity in order in the seventh.
The Spartans used the long ball to take control, as Chris Winkel led off the game with an opposite-field solo shot to left. Devin Belenski added a titanic two-run home run in the top of the second, after the Gaels tied the game in the bottom of first on Justin Lynch’s sacrifice fly.
Pat Winkel, who went 3-for-4 with four RBIs, then crushed a two-run homer in the sixth in the midst of the 10-run uprising. Matt Ronai, Belenski and Eli Oliphant added three hits apiece for the Spartans, who lost both of their regular-season matchups to the Gaels.
Chris Kanios, Urbani, Riley Casey and Jake Camp had base hits for the Gaels.