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St. Joseph baseball holds off Darien

Published 10:38 pm, Wednesday, May 7, 2014
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DARIEN -- St. Joseph baseball coach Jim Chaves found himself right back in a nightmare he hoped to never revisit.

Last week against Greenwich, the Cadets allowed four seventh-inning runs, falling to the Cardinals on a day when starting pitcher Nick Williams was dominant through six innings.

Wednesday against Darien, the calamity began to play out again as the Cadets took a three-run lead into the seventh only to see Darien rally against a once again dominant Williams.

Fortunately for Chaves, his alarm clock woke him up before this nightmare could came to another ugly conclusion.

The Cadets recorded the final two outs of the game at home plate, one on a wild pitch and the final on a single to left field, giving them a 4-3 win over FCIAC leading Darien.

"That got a little dicey," Chaves said. "Those were some gutty plays with the game on the line. I know in the back of their mind they probably had that Greenwich game, but they found a way to get it done today. That was a huge throw from the outfield. (Matt Laveneziana) has a strong arm, but that is something we work on every day and I can't say enough about that throw he made to the plate."

The Cadets led 4-1 heading into the seventh with Williams only allowing two hits to that point.

Williams rang up his 13th strikeout on the first batter, but the ball bounced and got away from the catcher, allowing George Reed to make it to first safely.

RBI singles by Mike O'Malley and Peter Archey made it 4-3, chasing Williams from the game in favor of Dave Otero.

Otero bounced one that got past Ismael Herrera, but he was able to pounce on it, getting it back to Otero in time to tag O'Malley racing home for the second out of the inning.

Brendan Donohue then hit a bouncer between short and third for a base hit, which Laveneziana collected and threw on a rope to Herrera, who put the tag on Archey for the final out.

Darien coach Mike Scott said being aggressive and sending Archey was the only play at that point in the game.

"Two outs and you have that opportunity, you have to take the chance," Scott said. "Tip your cap to their left fielder, he made a good throw and got the job done. It's just life in the FCIAC,"

Darien (11-2, 9-2 FCIAC) entered the game in first place with St. Joseph (8-4, 8-3 FCIAC) chasing them in fifth.

Picking up a win over the top team in the league was what was on the mind of the Cadets heading in to the game and they were happy to leave with a victory, no matter how close it was.

"We knew this game would be a huge game," Williams said.

"They were sitting on top of the conference and we knew we would have to play our `A' game today and we did that."

Williams did not allow a hit until the fourth inning, when the Blue Wave got their first run a single by Reed.

The Cadets scored one in the third, two in the fourth and one in the fifth to build lead.

Scott.Ericson@scni.com;

@EricsonSports

St. Joseph 4, Darien 3

ST. JOSEPH 001 210 0--4 10 1

DARIEN 000 100 2--3 6 0

Records: SJ -- 8-4, 8-3 FCIAC; D 11-2, 9-2 FCIAC

Batteries: SJ -- Nick Williams (W), Dave Otero (S, 7) and Ismael Herrera; D -- Ames Murray (L), Luke Mangan (7) and Anthony DiMeglio

Doubles: SJ -- Williams. Highlights: SJ -- Williams 13 Ks, 2-2, run, RBI; Dave Capela 2 RBI; D -- George Reed RBI; Brendan Donohue 2-4 run.

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