Troy Scribner, a recent graduate of Sacred Heart University, signed a contract with the Houston Astros as an undrafted free agent on Wednesday.

He joins Evan, a reliever with the Oakland A's who was sent down to Triple-A Sacramento in May after 12 games with the big club this spring.

"I'm so happy to have received an opportunity like this and I am so excited to start," Troy Scribner said in a press release issued by Sacred Heart, Wednesday.

Several years ago at Shepaug, Werkhoven had gotten a sense that Scribner, a 2009 Shepaug graduate, was no ordinary high school pitcher. Werkhoven recalls the Spartans' run in the Class S state tournament in Scribner's senior season and how, after a first-round bye, Scribner and the Spartans squeaked out a 4-3 win over Litchfield in the second round.

The following day, Scribner came to Werkhoven to discuss a flaw in his mechanics -- and, as Werkhoven remembers, Scribner figured out the flaw all by himself. The next day, the young hurler was in the bullpen working on the problem. In the next game, the state quarterfinals, Scribner pitched a no-hitter in a 3-0 victory over Northwest Catholic at Muzzy Field in Bristol.

"He's the smartest baseball player I've coached," Werkhoven said.

Scribner posted a 24-7 pitching record at Shepaug. As a senior, he struck out 121 batters in 90 2/3 innings -- the school's single-season record for innings pitched -- with a 1.08 earned-run average.

He took his talents to Sacred Heart, where he ranks second in school history in career strikeouts (261), innings pitched (344) and wins (26). The leader in all three of those categories, 1991 SHU graduate Rich Licursi of Trumbull, pitched for several seasons in the minor leagues.

Scribner is the seventh player from Shepaug to have signed a pro baseball contract. Only Evan -- a 2003 Shepaug graduate who went on to pitch at Central Connecticut State University, was drafted by the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2007 and made his big-league debut with the San Diego Padres in April of 2011 -- has made it to the majors.

"I'm absolutely thrilled for Troy," Werkhoven said. "He deserves a chance to play at the next level and to take a shot and see what he can do. He has worked extremely hard through high school and college to put himself in this position."

Scribner's SHU teammate John Murphy was drafted in the sixth round by the New York Yankees. Murphy, a Seymour native, was the first Northeast Conference player selected and the first Pioneer drafted since Mike Drowne in 2010.

Murphy has not yet signed with the Yankees.