The West Haven softball team’s season came to an end with a 5-0 loss to the Ridgefield Tigers in the CIAC playoffs at Biondi Field on Friday afternoon. The Westies showed a little rust after not playing for 11 days after their loss to the Amity Spartans in the SCC playoffs.
Scheduled to play on Wednesday, the Blue Devils’ game was pushed back waiting for the winner of the Tigers and Greenwich Cardinals, which was rained out on Tuesday and then the Wednesday contest was halted in the sixth inning by rain with the Tigers trailing, 12-10. The game resumed on Thursday and Ridgefield rallied to beat Greenwich, 13-12, pushing the second-round contest with West Haven to Friday afternoon. To further complicate things, Ridgefield’s Senior Prom was scheduled for Friday evening necessitating a move of the game time to 1.
As students found their way to their seats, the Tigers got the early jump on the Westies, scoring two, early runs in the first inning. After a single and two hit batters, Ridgefield capitalized with the infield drawn in with a bloop single over shortstop into shallow left to score the first run and then got a sacrifice fly to plate the second run. The Blue Devils looked poised to respond in the bottom of the inning after Ashlynn O’Keefe and Veronica Lynn drew walks with one out. Kailey Carrano then smashed a drive off the third baseman that caromed to the shortstop, who threw to third to just beat the sliding O’Keefe for the second out and Ivy Santos was retired to end the threat.
Ridgefield plated two, more runs in the fourth inning and another in the sixth inning to take a 5-0 lead but, the Westies again looked like they were ready to break out in the bottom of the inning when Morgan Peryer hit a leadoff single and then Lynn reached on an error. On the play, Peryer going full speed was interfered with rounding second base and was awarded third base. But, the inning came to an end when Carrano, who hit three of the hardest balls of the day, drilled a shot to shortstop and the Tigers were able to turn a double play to end the threat and the girls hopes of a rally. The Blue Devils went quietly in the seventh inning.
Santos went the distance for West Haven in the circle, allowing two earned runs on eight hits, while striking out six Tigers. The Blue Devils season ended after going 18-2 during the regular season, including a 15-0 start. The season also saw both Veronica Lynn and Kailey Carrano pick up their 100th career hits and had junior Ivy Santos blossom as one of the best pitchers in the state.