Kamehameha-Hawaii Wins Drenched Extra-Inning Contest Over Hilo
Following a 27 minute rain delay, Jordan Hirae’s walk in the eighth inning with the bases loaded brought home Gideon Kalili, giving Kamehameha-Hawaii a 3-2 extra-inning win over Hilo at the Kamehameha-Hawaii campus.
Most fans who watched Wednesday’s baseball contest between the Vikings and Warriors started to get used to the idea that heavy rain would force a highly competitive game end in a tie. The last of three different downpours that came down during the game forced the game to be halted in the bottom of the eighth inning with the game tied at two. Kamehameha-Hawaii had the bases loaded with one out in the frame, and Hirae at the plate with a 2-2 count against him.
During that delay that started at 5:24 in the afternoon, Hilo head coach Tony DeSa asked home plate umpire Warren Miyasaki whether the game would be called with the score even at two in the bottom of the eighth because of the downpour and the effect on the field, along with the darkening skies that made it tougher to see the ball at the field which does not have any lighting fixtures in sight.
Miyasaki said “well, no, not really,” and explained that he would give the home team, which was Kamehameha-Hawaii, the chance to fix up the field as soon as the rain let up. After about fifteen minutes, the rain let up, and coaches and players from the Warriors rushed out onto the field to remove water and mud from home plate and other areas of the infield. Once the game resumed, Hilo pitcher Kian Kurokawa worked right into a tough situation, immediately throwing ball three to Hirae. After the Warriors left fielder fouled off the next pitch, Kurokawa fired a pitch that Miyasaki ruled was barely off of the outside corner, bringing home the winning run.
The game was incredibly tight throughout, highlighted by a pitcher’s duel through the first three innings. Hilo starter Nick Fukunaga looked sharp early, setting down the first five batters he faced. He allowed two hits and a walk against the order the first time around.
Meanwhile, Warriors starter Kupono Correa was perfect, literally, through the first three innings. The perfect game was halted by Hilo sophomore Jodd Carter who bunted his way on with a single in the fourth inning. The shutout would go by the wayside shortly thereafter, when Eli Cruz hit a line drive base hit into center field, scoring Micah Kaaukai. The next batter, Kian Kurokawa, successfully executed a suicide squeeze, scoring Chayce Kaaua, to extend the lead.
Fukunaga continued to cruise into the sixth, when trouble arrived. Fukunaga walked Correa to lead off the inning, and while Correa’s courtesy runner, Makoa Rosario, was caught trying to steal second base, Gideon Kalili put the pressure right back on the right-handed hurler by drilling a double deep to right field. Kaimana Moike followed with a walk, chasing Fukunaga from the game.
Jordan Tagawa entered from the bullpen and immediately struck out Nainoa Hart, who tried to hold up his swing on a 2-2 pitch. He then loaded the bases on a four pitch walk to Bronson Pulgados, prompting DeSa to turn to Kian Kurokawa to end the inning. Hirae stepped to the plate and hit an infield single that shortstop Kaaua could not field cleanly, scoring Moike and Kalili to tie the game at two.
In the seventh, Hilo had their chance to take the lead when the first two men reached base. Tyler Higa reached on a five-pitch walk from new pitcher Kupono Decker, and Randall Iha followed with a picture-perfect bunt single that rolled fair up the third base line. Pat Tsue tried to sacrifice both over, but Decker came off of the mound to field the bunt and threw over to third, gunning down Higa. Carter dropped the sacrifice down successfully, but with two out, Micah Kaaukai hit a sharp liner to center field, which on most days would drop for a base hit, but Chay Toson charged in and dove at the ball and snatched it out of the air, ending the inning.
Kurokawa retired the side in order, which sent the game to extra innings, and Decker did the same in the top of the eighth. The Warriors started off the eighth with Kalili’s single up the middle, followed by an infield single by Moike. Hart struck out swinging, then Bronson Pulgados reached base on an error by Hilo second baseman Micah Kaaukai to load the bases up right before the rain delay, where Hirae got the job done.
Decker picked up the win for Kamehameha-Hawaii (4-2), allowing a hit and a walk in two innings of relief. Correa pitched well through the first six innings, allowing two runs on three hits, walking one and striking out two in 71 pitches.
The loss went to Kurokawa, who pitched an inning and two-thirds, striking out four, but allowing the game winning run to cross. Starter Nick Fukunaga allowed two runs on four hits, striking out three and walking three in five-and-a-third innings. Jordan Tagawa had a walk and a strikeout in a third of an inning for Hilo (4-2).
Hilo 000 200 00 – 2 4 1
Kamehameha-Hawaii 000 002 01 – 3 7 0
Kea’au defeats Ka’u 9-4
Kea’au scored in every inning but the sixth, rebounding from the Trojans’ first inning scoring outburst to win 9-4 out in Ka’u.
The Cougars scored a pair of runs in the first inning to take the early lead off of Ka’u starter Anthony Emmsley. But, the home team pounced right back. Shortstop Kihei Serrao hit a three-run home run to the short porch in right field with no one out in the inning, giving Ka’u the 3-2 lead. Four batters later, Mark Cuison smacked a triple to left field which brought in another run.
Maleko Remlinger settled down after that four-run inning, striking out ten batters over six innings to pick up the win. Cody Silva pitched the seventh inning, picking up a strikeout. Emmsley took the loss, going four innings, allowing six runs, four of them earned, on five hits with four walks and three strikeouts. Rayden Esperon allowed three more runs in three innings of relief.
Kea’au 211 210 2 – 9 8 1
Ka’u 400 000 0 – 4 5 8