The Darien Blue Wave scored three runs in the bottom of the sixth inning and defeated the Westhill Vikings, 5-3, in a key FCIAC baseball game Friday at DHS.
Two of the runs came home on wild pitches, as Nick Briganti scored the tying run, and Aaron Sears scored the go-ahead run. Liam McLaughlin then laced an RBI single to center for the fifth run, giving the Wave a two-run lead.
James Louis, who pitched the final two and one-third innings, then set the Vikings down in order in the top of the seventh to get the win.
The victory boosted Darien’s records to 11-7 overall and 10-4 in the FCIAC and the Wave leap-frogged over Danbury and into third place in the conference standings. Danbury dropped a 3-2 game to Greenwich on Friday and is now 10-5 in league play.
Westhill fell to 11-7 overall and 7-7 in the FCIAC as the Vikings are battling for a league playoff berth.
Williams started against Westhill and although he didn’t allow an earned run, a couple of errors and a passed ball led to three unearned runs and a high pitch count, as he came out of the game after four and two-thirds innings. Williams allowed four hits and four walks while striking out nine.
Louis did a fine job in relief and earned the victory. He allowed just one hit and had one strikeout in his two and one-third innings.
McLaughlin had a solid day at the plate, going 2-for-4 with a run and an RBI, while Glen Fay was also 2-for-4 with an RBI. Briganti doubled and scored a run.
Westhill took the initial lead when Sammy Spignola scored on an error in the top of the fourth inning.
The Wave answered in the bottom of the inning when Devyn Kipphut walked, stole second, went to third on a single by Fay, and scored on an error.
Two unearned runs crossed the plate in the top of the fifth as Westhill regained the lead at 3-1.
Darien came back with a run in the home half of the fifth. McLaughlin singled with one out, went to second and Karson Drake followed with a walk. A groundout pushed both runners up a base, and McLaughlin then scored on a groundout by Fay.
Briganti started the winning rally when he double leading off the bottom of the sixth. Sears followed with a bunt single and then stoke second to put two runners in scoring position.
After Williams walked, Briganti and Sears scored on a back-to-back wild pitches, and McLaughlin singled for the final run.
DARIEN 5, WESTHILL 3
Westhill 000 120 0 – 3 5 2
Darien 000 113 x – 5 7 3
Batteries: Westhill: James Gerard, Evan Campbell (4), Christian Rubino-Chuckas (7) and Matthew O’Connor; Darien: Henry Williams, James Louis (5) and Ben Olson
Highlights: Westhill: Noah Skaug was 2-for-4; Joey Gambino and Sammy Spignola each singled and scored a run; Darien: Liam McLaughlin 2-for-4, 1 run, 1 RBI; Glen Fay 2-for-4, 1 RBI; Nick Briganti doubled and scored a run
Records: Westhill 11-7 overall, 7-7 FCIAC; Darien 11-7, 10-4