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Former FCIAC baseball stars shine on college diamonds

There were many former high school baseball players from the FCIAC who maintained their passion for the sport and were student-athletes at their respective colleges this past spring.

Many of those players are listed below, underneath each of the high schools they attended, along with some highlights from college during the 2017 spring season.

Brien McMahon

Paul Salata was a sophomore first baseball who started in seven of the 22 games he played for Barry University and had a .303 batting average (10-for-33) and did not commit one error all season.

Mike Giordano was a redshirt junior catcher at Southern Connecticut State University who batted .444 (4-for-9) in four games with three RBIs.

Matt Galyas was a freshman lefthanded pitcher for Manhattanville, Hunter Dumas was a freshman outfielder for Albertus Magnus and Edwin Owolo was a sophomore infielder at Harvard.

Darien

Richard Brereton was a freshman pitcher/infielder at Emory University who was chosen Rookie of the Year in the University Athletic Association. Brereton had a 4-1 record with a 2.48 ERA in 14 appearances on the mound. He had a .244 batting average (11-for-45) and stole five bases in five attempts.

Anthony DiMeglio was a sophomore righthanded pitcher at Fordham University. He had a solid season when he got to pitch as he struck out 24 batters in 25 innings, had a 2.88 ERA, an 0-1 record and limited opponents to a .235 batting average against him. He was sidelined for about a month after he was hit by a line drive back at him on the mound.

Mack Glavin recently completed his career as a starting and relief pitcher at Franklin and Marshall. Glavin pitched 108 innings while starting in 16 of the 31 games he appeared in during his four-year career and had a a 9-7 record with a 4.17 ERA.

Jamie Schofield saw playing time as a backup freshman infielder at Western New England University.

Jake Frasca redshirted as a sophomore infielder/pitcher at Sacred Heart University after having transferred from Suffolk University, where he was the Great Northeast Athletic Conference Rookie of the Year in 2016.

Brendan Donohue was a junior infielder at Middlebury College who got two hits in three at-bats in the one game he played.

Andrew Nault was a junior relief pitcher at Western Connecticut State University.

Danbury

Brandon Backman was a freshman pitcher and George Bielizna a sophomore pitcher/first baseman for their hometown Western Connecticut State University. Bielizna had a 3-2 record, a 4.64 ERA and he struck out 38 batters in 54 1/3 innings.

Fairfield Ludlowe

Mike Kochiss was a senior shortstop who put the wraps on a very good career at Endicott with an excellent senior season. Kochiss had a .399 batting average (57-for-143) with 32 RBIs, 42 runs scored, four home runs and 13 stolen bases and he became the first player ever who was selected the Player of the Year in the Commonwealth Coast Conference for two straight years.

Kochiss was selected to the All-CCC First Team for the second straight year and he also made CCC Academic All-Conference. He had a .405 BA (121-for-299) during his last two years to finish his career with a .337 BA (186-for-552). Last year Kochiss batted .410 (64-for-156).

Dan Paglialunga was a freshman outfielder/pitcher for Western Connecticut State University.

Fairfield Warde

Six players who helped Warde advance to the championship game of the 2016 Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference Class LL Baseball Tournament were freshman for their respective colleges.

Bobby Lazar was an outfielder who helped lead Herkimer County Community College to a 34-11 record. He had a .321 batting average (36-for-112) and tied for the team lead in home runs (four) and RBIs (42).

Jack Myers was an infielder at Union who got four hits in 14 at-bats for a .286 batting average.

Reece Maniscalco (Wofford) and John Natoli (Cornell) saw some action as righthanded pitchers. Joey Deutsch (Endicott) was a third baseman/shortstop who got some playing time while Danny DiBartolomeo was on the roster as a freshman catcher at Guilford College.

Greenwich

Seven former Cardinals were on college rosters.

Alex Loparco was a sophomore infielder who batted .286 (46-for-161) with 32 RBIs, 30 runs scored, 11 doubles and eight stolen bases at Western New England. He batted .310 as a freshman and currently has a .297 career batting average.

Colin Kelly started in 22 of 25 games as a freshman infielder at Union and had a .256 batting average (20-for-78) with 13 RBIs and 20 runs scored.

Ryan Marks was a senior pitcher at Columbia who pitched 12 total innings in 12 appearances and had a 3.75 ERA with no decisions

Marco Pastore was a freshman catcher who appeared in four games for Springfield College and went 1-for-4.

Kevin Woodring was a freshman infielder at Middlebury who played in 21 games and had a .281 batting average (18-for-64) with 13 RBIs, a pair of home runs and five doubles.

Taylor Olmstead was a redshirt junior outfielder at Southern New Hampshire and Mike Genaro was a sophomore pitcher at Babson.

New Canaan

Casey Ouellette started in 20 of 23 games and had a .281 batting average (16-for-57) with 10 RBIs as a senior outfielder for the University of Bridgeport.

Norwalk

Moe Ortiz-Echevarria got a little bit of playing time as a freshman outfielder at Western Connecticut State University.

Stamford

Billy DeVito was a sophomore pitcher at Hartford who started four times out of his 17 appearances. He struck out 34 batters in 38 1/3 innings, had a 2-2 record and a pair of saves.

Mark Serricchio was a freshman infielder at Springfield who played in two games and got a hit in his only official at-bat.

Shawn Urbano was a sophomore pitcher for and Ken Wright a sophomore outfielder at Southern Connecticut State University.

Staples

Frank Vartuli completed his career with an excellent senior season as a first baseman who started in 33 games for Western Connecticut State University, which finished 15-20. Vartuli had a .358 batting average (43-for-120), a .583 slugging percentage and he led WCSU in home runs (five), RBIs (38) and doubles (12) and was second on the team with 25 runs scored. He also excelled in the field, where he committed just one error and had a .996 fielding percentage.

Trinity Catholic

Matt Fraioli was a sophomore infielder at Springfield. Fraioli played in 13 games and had 10 hits in 34 at-bats for a .294 average.

Randy Polonia did not pitch for UConn as a sophomore because he had to sit the season out and continue his recovery from having Tommy John surgery.

Trumbull

There were 10 former Eagles on college rosters.

Zach Sagar was a junior catcher and Matt Fasoli a sophomore pitcher for Western Connecticut State University. Sagar batted .338 (23-for-68) in 23 games with 10 RBIs and 15 runs scored.

Brian Hnatuk was a sophomore pitcher who had a 2-2 record while pitching 39 1/3 innings in 14 appearances at Eastern Connecticut State University,

Colin Keyes was a junior pitcher at New Haven who hurled 10 1/3 innings in 12 appearances with no decisions and a 1.74 ERA.

Jake Levison was a appeared in seven games off the bench as a junior outfielder at Penn and he scored two runs in five at-bats.

Luke Waldek has a career batting average of .286 (152-for-532) with 119 RBIs, 13 home runs and 30 doubles after three years as an infielder at Minnesota State.

Carlos Garrido started in 21 of 38 games as sophomore catcher at Longwood University.

Chris O’Brien appeared in five games as a freshman pitcher at Endicott. Joe Nemchek was a freshman pitcher at UConn-Avery Point and Alex Rauso a freshman catcher at Bridgeport.

Westhill

Bryan Pieschel was a senior infielder and Michael Tufano a freshman outfielder at Fairleigh Dickinson. Pieschel had a .281 batting average (23-for-79) while starting in 24 games and he also had 13 RBIs and eight doubles. Tufano played in five games, did not get a hit in his three official at-bats but he scored two runs.

Sammy Kosterich appeared in 15 games as a junior pitcher at Eastern Connecticut State University. He struck out 15 batters in 16 innings and had a 3-1 record and a pair of saves.

Johnny Spoto was a freshman infielder at Southern Connecticut State University and Ronnie Jackson was a junior infielder at Central Connecticut State University.

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