BRIDGEPORT — Yes, Ben Casparius was very much aware of what he was hitting for in the top of the fifth, let alone what he’d already accomplished Wednesday.
Staples’ North Carolina-committed pitcher/third baseman had set the school record for hits in his first three at-bats, a single, a double and a triple, in the Wreckers’ 21-4 win over St. Joseph at Harbor Yard.
“I told my coach I was either striking out in that at-bat or I was hitting a home run,” said Casparius, who said he’s never hit for the cycle.
On a 3-1 pitch, he belted one down the left-field line toward the plaza in front of Webster Bank Arena. It was foul.
“I knew I pulled it a little too much,” Casparius said. “Ten feet to the right, and I would’ve had it.”
He walked for the second time (intentionally in the first inning) one pitch later in his final plate appearance.
Everybody hit for Staples (13-7, 12-4 FCIAC), which clinched a home conference playoff game, though its seed and opponent have to wait for the completion of the Wilton-Danbury game on Thursday.
Nine different Wreckers had more than one hit. Every spot in the batting order produced at least one RBI. Four different players had more than one RBI, paced by Casparius’ five; he also scored five runs.
“St. Joseph is a really good team. They got caught up in three games in three days,” Staples coach Jack McFarland said. “They did what they had to do to get into states. I feel great for them as an FCIAC team. (Jim Chaves) is a great coach.”
St. Joseph (8-12, 5-11) beat McMahon and Seymour on Monday and Tuesday to earn its invitation to the CIAC Class M tournament.
Staples scored in each of the first five innings, sending 10 batters to the plate in the second, nine in the third, 12 in the fourth and nine more in the fifth.
“It was a great game for us. Everyone was hitting,” Casparius said.
Casparius’ three hits give him 112. Jack Hennessy, who graduated in 2010, had 110.
“It feels unbelievable,” Casparius said. “I honestly didn’t even know it was coming up until my coach told me two games ago. I’ve been with Coach McFarland for four years, starting as a freshman, and I feel the team’s growing.”
St. Joseph put together four of its five hits in the sixth inning, scoring three runs. Thomas Montelli’s two-run double capped the scoring.
PLAYER OF THE GAME
Staples star Ben Casparius was intentionally walked in the first inning, then went 3-for-3 with five RBIs in his next three at-bats.
STANDINGS UNDER PROTEST
The FCIAC’s playoff seeds remain up in the air because of an upheld protest from a game Monday night between Wilton and Danbury. Those two teams will complete that game Thursday with Danbury up 1-0 but Wilton threatening in the seventh inning.Read Full Article
A Wilton comeback win would leave a three-way tie among the Warriors, Ridgefield and Staples for second place. A Danbury win secures second place for the Wreckers.
There were no home runs, but there were six triples, five for Staples.
“It means he’s had four great years. As a team, we’ve played at a high level.” —Staples coach Jack McFarland on Casparius’ team record for hits
STAPLES 21, ST. JOSEPH 4
STAPLES164 640 0—21 24 1
ST. JOSEPH010 003 0— 4 5 2
Records: Staples 13-7, 12-4 FCIAC; St. Joseph 8-12, 5-11
Batteries: S—Rob Stone (W, 3-1), Alec Burns (5), Jack Portman (6), George Goldstein (7) and Matt Stone, Ben Schattman (5); SJ—Mike D’Agostino (L), Griffin Love (2), Brendan Finch (3), Justyn Spencer (4), Antonio Ferraro (6) and Zach Dunkel