Hits were hard to come by for Hauppauge during its first-round playoff game at Ward Melville on Thursday. But when sophomore Sean Prahalis blasted a tenth-inning double to left field, it turned out to be just the hit that the Eagles needed to gain some momentum and beat Ward Melville, 2-1.
Teammate Austin Adamo followed that double with a base hit that took a bad hop and caught Ward Melville off guard, allowing Prahalis to score. Minutes later, Franco Testani sent a ground ball through the legs of a Ward Melville infielder, and Adamo scored the team's go-ahead run.
But for the first nine innings, it could have been anybody's game. And Ward Melville lefty Anthony Kay was a big part of that, pitching a no-hitter through the eighth inning.
"He pitched a great game, kept their batters off stride," Patriots head coach Lou Petrucci said. "That's a high scoring team, and we did a good job keeping them at zero."
No. 8 Ward Melville (12-7) is now 2-1 in extra-innings games this season, and is 4-3 in games decided by one run.
"We need to focus a little bit better and put some good swings out later in the game," Petrucci said. "We didn't take advantage of the breaks we had earlier in the game. [Hauppauge] played a great game. They deserved to win."
Lefty CJ Schildt started for ninth-seeded Hauppauge (15-6) and pitched eight innings, striking out six and giving up seven hits.
Ward Melville scored its only run in the tenth, starting with a base hit by Daniel O'Neil, who got to third when the umpire called two balks. He scored on another base hit by freshman Joseph Flynn.
Hauppauge advances to face No. 1 Connetquot on Friday, while Ward Melville will play No. 17 Smithtown West.