Video clips via HanRadio.com
BRIDGEPORT >> Even after eight innings of play, and more than 120 pitches thrown, Wilton’s JT Morin still felt like he could have kept going.
Friday night on the biggest stage to date, Morin put on a clinic. The senior pitcher struck out 12, including five of the last six batters he faced, as he propelled Wilton to a 1-0 victory over Staples for the FCIAC title at Harbor Yard.
“I felt like I could have gone forever today,” Morin said with a grin. “During the game my arm never hurt. I felt so good and I felt like every pitch was on tonight and I was going to throw everyone I threw for a strike, and that’s what I did.”
Morin’s performance was that more incredible as he won the quarterfinal game for Wilton against Norwalk earlier this week. He was named the MVP of the game.
It was a combination of a slider, curve and fastball that kept the normal high-powered offense of Staples silent most of the evening.
“As the game went on, he was getting stronger,” Wilton head coach Tim Eagen said.
But as dominant as Morin was, he was matched for most of the night by Staples’ Marco Latella, who threw seven shutout innings and was equally impressive.
Staples had to play Trinity at 4 p.m. Friday to advance to the title game against Wilton. The Wreckers beat Trinity 8-2.
The Wreckers’ original semifinal game against Trinity was supposed to play out Wednesday evening, but due to weather, was delayed twice.
“A lot of pride, they are great kids,” Staples coach Jack McFarland said of his team’s ability to play back to back games.
In what turned out to be a classic pitcher’s duel, backed by multiple highlight worthy defensive plays, it took extra innings to claim a champion.
In the top of the eighth with one out, a short single got Wilton on base, and then with two outs, it was Jackson Ward who provided the game-winning hit, an RBI single to make it 1-0.
“It was definitely nerve-wracking going into extra innings,” Morin said.
But with a one-run lead to work with and three outs away, Morin calmly did his job as Wilton claimed its first FCIAC title since 1999.
“It was the best feeling in the world,” Morin said of getting that last out.
“Hats off to JT Morin,” McFarland said. “We only had a couple hits, it wasn’t enough. But both teams played great defense, it was a great baseball game. We’re looking to make a deep run in the state playoffs, this is a special team. They were asked to do a lot today.”
Wilton 1, Staples 0
Wilton 000 000 01 — 1 7 0
Staples 000 000 00 — 0 2 1