St. Paul baseball wins at Wolcott

The early portion of Friday afternoon’s St. Paul-Wolcott baseball game looked like a pitchers’ duel.

For the first two and a half innings, Wolcott’s A.J. Martinez and St. Paul’s Joey Tonnotti matched zero for zero. In the bottom of the third inning, the Eagles picked up a run for a one-run lead. The Falcons responded with seven straight runs over their next three at bats and won the game, 7-1. St. Paul homered three times and improved to a perfect 13-0 while Wolcott fell to 9-4.

The Eagles scratched across a run in the third inning on Devin Fuegen’s grounder to first base. Ryan Santopietro, who doubled with one out, scored, but Falcon first baseman Mario Izzo prevented further damage with a diving stop to his right. With runners on second and third and two out, Tonnotti escaped the jam with a strikeout, one of his 11 in six innings.

St. Paul’s response to Wolcott’s early lead was swift. Casey Cerruto hit a one-out solo home run to center field to tie the game. Tonnotti was hit by a pitch, then Steve Morelli reached on an error, and the Falcons wound up with runners on second and third. Jamie Leggett was jammed by Martinez, but his ball fell into the outfield to score Tonnotti and Morelli for a 3-1 St. Paul lead. Martinez got a double play ball to end the inning.

Tonnotti threw a 1-2-3 fourth inning, including back-to-back called third strikes to end the frame. In the top of the fifth inning, Devin Kulas singled with one out. Ryan Daniels hit a high fly ball to right field that carried over the fence for a two-run home run and a 5-1 lead. Kulas added a two-run homer in the sixth, his third hit of the game, for a 7-1 advantage. Kulas hit the ball the other way down the right field line and the ball fell over the fence beyond the 300-foot marker.

On the mound, Tonnotti gave up a single run on four hits to go with his 11 strikeouts, two walks and two hit batters. Martinez pitched well early for Wolcott, including a pair of strikeouts of Daniels, but he was victimized by the long ball.

Coming up: St. Paul has an interesting week ahead. It begins with a 4 p.m. home game Wednesday against Holy Cross. The Falcons face WCA on Friday at Fulton Park, then travel to West Hartford on Saturday for a nonleague game against Hall.

Wolcott begins the week at Torrington on Monday at 5:15 p.m. The Eagles host Watertown on Wednesday before traveling to Crosby on Friday.

GALLERY: Here are my photos from Friday’s game.

PHOTO CAPTION: The St. Paul baseball team improved to 13-0 with Friday’s 7-1 road win over Wolcott. (Copyright, Sports on CT-69)