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Sunday, April 29, 2012
New England Roundup: Connecticut

By Roger Brown

There are perfect games, and then there are games like the one Stonington's Andrea Chiaradio pitched against Norwich Free Academy on April 21.

ConnecticutChiaradio faced 21 batters in Stonington's 3-0 triumph, and struck out all 21.

"We threw a lot of drop curves and rise balls," Chiaradio told TheDay.com. "I was trying not to think about [a perfect game]. I was just focused on getting the outs."

Chiaradio, a junior, is pitching at the varsity level for the first time this season. She was the starting center fielder for the Bears last season.

The victory improved Chiaradio's record to 3-1 this season. Julie Royer caught the perfect game.

“She seemed like she just had confidence,” Stonington coach Ann-Marie Houle told TheDay.com. “I don't know what the heck was going on in her mind. I'm superstitious, so people were sitting on the same buckets for seven innings.

“She played center field all last year and she never complained. When the coach gives you that moment and you take it … good for her.”

Former Masuk standout Rachele Fico also struck out 21 batters in a game. Fico, a junior on the LSU softball team, set the national record for perfect games during her high school career with 26.

ESPNHS HONORS MONTELLI
ESPNHS selected St. Joseph's Vito Montelli as its National Coach of the Year for the 2011-12 season.

Montelli, 79, has been St. Joseph's head coach for 50 seasons, and is the only coach in the program's history. He led the Cadets to a 25-1 record and the Class LL state championship last season.

Montelli has guided St. Joseph's to 11 state titles and six runner-up finishes. He has an 878-328 career record. No New England high school basketball coach has won more games.

“It's really a humbling honor and I'm thrilled to be selected because [there are] so many deserving coaches out there,” Montelli said. “This is special for our school, our players and our coaching staff.” NO HITTER? NO PROBLEM
The Pomperaug baseball team recorded three no-hitters during a four-game stretch between April 16-24.

Senior David Cherry pitched two of the no-hitters. He stuck out 15 during an 8-0 triumph over Immaculate, and then tossed a no-hitter in his next start – a 5-0 victory over New Fairfield.

In between Cherry’s starts, Andrew Reel pitched a no-hitter against Weston. Reel struck out 10 in Pomperaug’s 11-1 win.

ACE IN THE HOLE
Freshman Kelly Whaley recorded a double-eagle in her first varsity match to lead Farmington to a 173-197 victory over Cheshire on April 11.

The double-eagle came on Whaley's second shot on the 487-yard par-5 14th hole at Southington Country Club. It was the first double-eagle recorded on that course during a competitive round.

The double-eagle helped Whaley earn medalist honors.

Whaley won the Connecticut Women's Amateur championship last summer at age 14.

NOTRE DAME-WEST HAVEN CAN'T OUTRUN LAW
Connor Falaguerra knocked in the game's only run with a sacrifice fly in the top of the 11th inning as the Law baseball team handed Notre Dame-West Haven – the state's top-ranked team – its first loss of the season.

Matt Ferrialo tossed 10 scoreless innings to earn the win. Joe Bannon pitched a scoreless 11th to pick up the save.

Mike Terzi pitched nine scoreless innings for Notre Dame-West Haven.

The loss dropped Notre Dame-West Haven's record to 8-1 and ended a 13-game winning streak that dated back to last season.

LEWIS HEADED TO HOFSTRA
Northwest Catholic-West Hartford guard Zach Lewis gave a verbal commitment to Hofstra on April 25.

Lewis was averaging 22.2 points per game when he was dismissed from the team for undisclosed reasons in early February. He scored 43 points in Northwest Catholic's opener against New Britain, and followed up that performance by scoring 23 against DeMatha Catholic at the Hoophall Classic.

Roger Brown is a freelance writer who has been reporting on high school sports in New England since 1992.