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Monday, October 15 News

Shepaug baseball closing in on perfection

WASHINGTON — Seventeen down and three to go. That’s the story for the Shepaug varsity baseball team as it continues to roll through the Berkshire League and chase a league title and perfect season.

The Spartans stood at 17-0 on the season after a 10-0 victory over Berkshire League rival Thomaston on Monday.

Shepaug started the season with wins over Terryville (11-1), SouthWest Conference foe Brookfield (7-1) and Litchfield (10-0) and it has not slowed down since. The Spartans’ remaining schedule included two road games (Mills, Gilbert) and a final home game against Wamogo at Ted Alex Field where they are 11-0 this season.

“We have a really good group of kids that love to play baseball,” Shepaug coach Scott Werkhoven said. “Their attitude and effort have been consistent from day one, they love coming to the field everyday. They work hard, focus on getting better and have fun playing baseball.”

Shepaug is also two wins away from locking up the top seed in the Class S State Tournament. The Spartans are ahead of Holy Cross of Waterbury (17-2), which has one game to play.

As is the case when most baseball teams get on a roll, the Spartans are playing well in all phases and getting a number of players to step up and contribute game to game. Shepaug’s pitching has been solid led by innings leaders Alan Stinson, Dominic Perachi and Chance Dutcher.

Aside from the main three, Werkhoven and the Spartans have had other pitches step up and effectively eat up some innings.

“We've had other guys give us big innings at different times, Nick Fleming, James Kennedy and Mike McCluskey have done the job when called on,” Werkhoven said.

Offensively, Shepaug’s most consistent hitters to this point of the season have been Ethan Hibbard, Chance Dutcher, Joe Brunelli and Stinson.

“One of the keys for us has been that everyone has contributed, each game someone else seems to step up,” Werkhoven said. “Against Thomaston, Jack Pesce had a big hit, against Nonnewaug Owen Hibbard had three hits. Jack Schneider has come up with some big hits at key times.”

According to Werkhoven, senior Kyle LaMay is having a solid season at the plate and in the field and as a leader in the infield as well.

Currently the Spartans are sitting atop both the BL standings and the CIAC Class S rankings. While they are in an enviable position, Werkhoven and the team know that their work is far from finished.

“We know we've had a good start, but we also know we can continue to improve,” Werkhoven said. “They show up each day trying to get better.”

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