MONTROSE – Hen Hud saw the various preseason baseball rankings, and the Sailors took mental notes when they realized that they were nowhere to be found.
That brief feeling of disappointment quickly gave way to a rather obvious realization: It was time to get to work. And if they took care of business, the rest would take care of itself.
With less than two weeks remaining in the regular season, there is no denying Hen Hud anymore. Thursday’s 6-2 win over Nanuet at Sunset Park improved the upstart Sailors to 11-4, ensuring their first winning season since 2013.
“We came into the season and knew there were low expectations, but we had high expectations for ourselves from the start,” junior catcher Danny Weimar said. “I think we’re just proving to people what we can do. Knowing that a lot of people were saying that we weren’t going to be anything, I think it’s helping us and we’re using it as motivation.”
Senior ace Boomer Vigliotti worked quickly to set the tone, and the Hen Hud bats provided some breathing room.
Weimar and sophomore Jack Kelly each had an RBI hit in the first, but the Sailors’ big inning came in the fourth. Mike Crowley scored on a wild pitch, Jack Attinelly hit an RBI single and Weimar hit a booming double deep into the right-center field gap to make it 6-0.
“I was just looking for my pitch, and he left the fastball over the middle of the plate,” Weimar said. “I just did what I could do with it.”
The Sailors are ranked fourth in Class A in the latest Lohud Baseball Rankings and are positioning themselves for a high seed in the sectional playoffs. And with only three senior starters, the best may be yet to come.
“We know Rye and Byram and John Jay are up there, but we think that we might be a little overlooked this year,” Vigliotti said. “We think we can prove some people wrong.”
Player of the game: Boomer Vigliotti, Hen Hud — The big righty pounds the strike zone with a variety of pitches and got some crucial ground balls to work out of jams in the complete-game effort.
“Usually it’s my curveball or slider, but today it really seemed like my two-seam fastball was moving across the zone and they couldn’t really touch it,” he said.
Turning point: Nanuet scored two runs in the fifth inning to cut the deficit to 6-2 and then loaded the bases in the sixth with no outs. Vigliotti somehow escaped without allowing a run, getting a strikeout and a 6-4-3 double play.
“Bases loaded with no outs, you think they’re at least going to get one or two runs,” he said. “But my coaches have brought me up knowing that I’m always one pitch away from getting out of the inning.”
Stat line: Hen Hud (11-4) — Vigliotti pitched a complete game on 92 pitches (61 strikes), allowing two runs (one earned) on eight hits and two walks with five strikeouts. Weimar went 3 for 4 with a double and two RBI and Attinelly went 2 for 4 with two runs scored and an RBI. Nanuet (7-6) — Steven Rossini pitched three innings on 67 pitches (40 strikes), allowing five runs (two earned) on six hits and two walks with three strikeouts. Steven Rizzuto pitched three innings in relief on 38 pitches (25 strikes), allowing one run on four hits with no walks and one strikeout. Mike Castello went 2 for 3 with a double and a run scored.
Quotable: “Our pitching is doing well this year, our defense has been backing up our pitchers and we’re getting these outs,” Weimar said. “We’re hitting well lately, too, so it’s looking good.”