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MOUNT VERNON — The hitting machine that the Fredericktown baseball team has been all season seemed to have met its match Tuesday in Marion Pleasant pitcher Brennan Newell.
Fortunately for the Freddies, they had their own bat-wrecker in Anthony Caputo.
Caputo gave up just four hits and got some tremendous help from his defense in leading the Freddies to a 1-0 victory over the Spartans in the Division III district semifinals at Mount Vernon Nazarene University.
“He (Caputo) was feeling pretty good. He told us in the third or fourth inning that we were going to have to pry him off the mound. Tony’s a competitor. This was his game tonight,” said Fredericktown coach Ryan Hathaway. “He did what we needed him to do — he threw a lot of strikes and let the defense do the work.”
That solid defense was never more apparent than in the fourth inning. Centerfielder Nick Cunningham ran down a drive into the right-center field gap, making a diving catch to start the inning. Then, after a single and a walk, third baseman Ty Hatfield started a 5-4-3 double play to get the Freddies (16-7) out of the jam.
“It was all the defense tonight. They made some outstanding plays. The boys were behind me. They’ve got my back,” Caputo said.