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Canton clinches berth in Class S tournament

CANTON, May 23 — A relatively young Canton High softball team clinched a spot in the Class S tournament last week with an 8-2 victory over Windsor Locks. Freshman pitcher Morgan Scafuri contributed offensively and defensively.
 
On the mound, Scafuri struck out seven, allowed three hits and scattered five walks in six innings before giving way to junior Christina Cardwell, who struck out two. At the plate, Scafuri had a single, double and triple.
 
Canton (7-7, 7-7 NCCC) stole 11 bases in the game. Sarah Allen, Leigh Fitzgerald and Olivia Bonini each had hits in the game while Katherine Winsor had two excellent sacrifice bunts to move runners into scoring position.
 
It’s been a up and down year for the Warriors, who earned a spot in the state tournament for the fifth straight year. There is just one senior in the starting lineup – shortstop Deanna Nappi. There are 17 players on the varsity squad and most have had an opportunity to play for first-year coach John Bement, who also doubles as Canton’s athletic coordinator.
 
Scafuri is a hard-throwing freshman, who starts most games. Cardwell doesn’t pitch as fast but she often gets the opposition to ground out. Bement has alternated the two pitchers depending on the opposition. Scarfuri pitched a no-hitter in a recent 16-1 win over East Windsor, striking out six and walking three in five innings of work.
 
Canton had 15 hits in that game, sparked by Scafuri, who was 4-for-4 with a double. Junior centerfielder Stephanie Gauthier and catcher Olivia Bonini each had a single and a double while Leigh Fitzgerald had three singles.
 
Gauthier is hitting in the low .400s and earned All-NCCC honors. Gauthier, Fitzgerald at first base, Nappi and Bonini behind the plate have played the season at one position. The rest of the players have been moved depending on the opponent.
 

But with the tournament approaching, Bement sees the lineup settling down. Canton, who dropped a 9-0 decision to Somers last Thursday, closed out the regular season with a doubleheader against Bolton. Canton didn’t qualify for the four-team NCCC Tournament. The Class S tournament begins on Tuesday, May 31.

Gerry deSimas, Jr., is the editor and founder of The Collinsville Press. He is an award-winning writer and has been covering sports in Connecticut and New England for more than 30 years. He was inducted into the New England High School Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2018.

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