The Jaguars completed a 22-0 season with a 3-0 win over Caravel in the state title game at Frawley Stadium Sunday night.
The Appoquinimink High School baseball team won the state championship Sunday night, completing a 22-0 season with a 3-0 win over Caravel at Frawley Stadium in Wilmington.
In the shutout for the Jaguars, starting pitcher Joey Davis threw six strong innings, striking out four, walking seven and allowing just two hits.
Krew Bouldin struck out the side in the seventh to earn the save.
First-year Head Coach Mike Torres said catcher Gabe Dermott was “crucial on the defensive side, back-picking two Caravel base runners and throwing out another on a steal attempt.”
At the plate, the Jags scored one run in the bottom of the third on an error on a pick-off attempt by Caravel.
Lorenzo Carrier doubled home the second run for the Jaguars in the bottom of the fifth, one of his two hits in the game.
The Jags scored their final run in the bottom of the sixth on a wild pitch.
The 3-0 win over Caravel, while still nerve-wracking, didn’t seem as difficult as the two tournament games that preceded it.
In the quarterfinals, the Jags prevailed 1-0 in an extra-inning pitchers’ duel against Sussex Tech that was delayed by lightning.
“Our guys showed resiliency against Sussex Tech. They did not give up all game,” said Torres. “We knew that something would fall our way eventually. Our guys stayed focused during the lightning delay and came out ready to go when the game resumed.”
Then in the semifinals last Thursday at Frawley Stadium, defending state champ Cape Henlopen took a 2-0 lead in the first inning on a two-run homer before the game was postponed because of a storm. The teams returned Friday to resume the game, and the Jags battled back to win 4-3.
“Myself and my coaching staff just tried to keep our guys focused throughout that entire process,” said Torres. “We knew there was a chance of rain but all year we have preached to our players that we can only handle things we can control. Our guys were ready to go Friday and overcame the deficit and ultimately prevailed. We just stressed that it was another game and that there was no added pressure.”
Torres said the keys to the team’s success this year started with strong pitching and defense.
“Joey Davis and Mason Keene led the pitching staff and guys like Krew Bouldin and Aidan Deakins got the job done as well when called upon. Each of those guys gave our offense a chance to win ball games and even in situations where the pitching lacked, the offense was able to pick them up,” he said. “That was the biggest key to success this year, our guys being able to pick one another up.”
He said the team never thought about an undefeated season.
“Our goals this year were broken down into weeks,” Torres said. “If we won each week we would end up where we needed to be and that is exactly how it worked out.”
Torres said guiding the team to the title in his first year as head coach is “truly surreal, something that I could have never imagined.”
However, he said the credit goes to the players.
“This was a special group of guys that truly gave their all the entire season and to see them come out on top was amazing,” he said.
The team’s roster includes seniors John Jones, Joseph Davis, Gabriel Dermott, Jacob Conover, Krew Bouldin, Devon Franek, Dante DiSabatino and Trevor Coleman; juniors Nicholas Davis, Mason Keene, Jayden Estes, Colton Duckworth, Preston Knotts and Jarrett Weglarz; sophomores Lorenzo Carrier, Keegan Miller and Kory Pritchard and freshman Aidan Deakins.
Along with Torres, the coaching staff includes varsity assistants Chris Muscara and Mike Annone, junior varsity head coach David Shinton, freshmen head coach Tom Purse and volunteer coach Bill Haggerty.
Appo’s state tournament run
First round - bye
Second round - Appo 9, Delmar 1
Quarterfinals - Appo 1, Sussex Tech 0
Semifinals - Appo 4, Cape Henlopen 3
Championship - Appo 3, Caravel 0