Balls and Strikes: Amoroso no-hits McMahon

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St. Joseph’s John Amoroso breezed through Brien McMahon’s lineup, no-hitting the Senators on 106 pitches on Saturday afternoon in Trumbull.

The Cadets’ senior right-hander struck out seven and was dominant in the 3-2 win, outside of the third inning, when McMahon hit a pair of sacrifice flies. Amoroso walked two batters, hit another and made an error in the inning.

“That’s definitely not the way you draw up a no-hitter but other than that one inning, he had really good stuff, kept them off-balance,” St. Joseph head coach Jim Chaves said. “He threw strikes and we made plays.”

Amoroso got better as the game went on and recorded six of his seven strikeouts over the final four innings.

*Senior catcher Joe Burns came up huge both at bat and behind the plate for St. Joseph. He batted 2-for-3 with two home runs and two RBI. He also made a tough pick on a throw to tag a runner out at home on a double-steal attempt in the third.

*McMahon right-hander Ricardo Torres pitched one of his best outings of the season, but left with nothing to show for it. Torres allowed eight hits and walked one in 6 1/3 innings. He wasn’t overpowering (one strikeout) but had pinpoint command and left the hitters off-balance.

*McMahon’s aggressiveness backfired in the third inning with two outs, when Alex Valenzano was thrown out at home on the double-steal. Shortstop Bryan Daniello was at first base, took off for second and drew a throw from Amoroso. The shortstop made the quick decision to throw home for the out.

“In that situation we’re trying to be aggressive at that particular point in time and see what happens,” McMahon head coach John Cross said. “The catcher was phenomenal today. The ball bounced 12 feet in front of home plate. Any other catcher, he drops that.”

*St. Joseph improved to 13-2 (12-2 FCIAC) and is still holding out hope of catching unbeaten Greenwich (17-0, 15-0) for the top seed in the conference tournament. The two teams will square off for the first time on Monday at 4:45 p.m. in Greenwich for a critical game.

“We would like to get the two seed,” Chaves said. “If somebody wants to help us out maybe and knock off Greenwich once, we’ll see what we can do on Monday against them.”

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