Waiakea Opens Defense of State Title With Tight Win
Taylor Mondina broke a 1-1 sixth inning tie with an RBI groundout, scoring Andrew Filoteo Jr., and the Waiakea High School baseball team successfully opened the 2013 season with a 2-1 win over Lahainaluna High School.
The season opener is part of the 2nd Annual Waiakea High School Invitational Tournament at Wong Stadium.
Filoteo opened the sixth inning with a solid single to right field and, with junior Grant Nonaka at the plate, stole second base with no one out. Nonaka grounded to third base, but Jared Arakawa couldn’t cleanly field the bouncer, allowing Filoteo to move to third and Nonaka to reach base on the error.
Mondina was next up, and he worked a full count before hitting a bouncing ball to second base. Kaimana Casco-DeLeon’s only play was to first base, allowing Filoteo to score.
Sophomore Evan Ishihara came on to close the game for the Warriors and got two quick outs before facing Arakawa. The senior infielder laced a 1-2 pitch into right-center field, but Filoteo raced to his right and laid out for a tremendous diving catch to end the game.
Filoteo struggled through the first few innings. He missed making a catch in right field in the first inning when he misjudged the ball diving in, allowing Casco-DeLeon to notch a double. He struck out looking to end the bottom half of the frame and struck out swinging in the third. He finished the game batting 1-for-3 and recording the key final out.
Lahainaluna (0-1) struck first in the third inning with two outs against junior right-hander Chase Komatsu. Kamoana Kalanikau dribbled a seeing-eye single through the left side of the infield and moved to second when Casco-DeLeon was hit by a Komatsu pitch. The next batter, Bronson Kaina, smacked a single to center field to drive Kalanikau home, allowing the Lunas to take a 1-0 lead.
Waiakea (1-0) answered right back in the bottom of the inning. Kean Wong, brother of St. Louis Cardinals minor-league player Kolten, led the inning off with an infeld single to the left side of the diamond. Alika Guillermo followed with a shallow base knock to right, moving Wong to third base. After Kodie Medeiros struck out, freshman Caleb Freitas-Fields brought Wong in with a sacrifice fly to left-center field, tying the game at 1.
Wong had a chance to open the game up in the next inning after a pair of walks to Komatsu and Tyler Aburamen had runners at the corners, but Wong swung at the first pitch he saw and lifted a routine fly ball to right fielder Kaina to end the threat.
Komatsu led a solid Waiakea pitching staff on opening day. After his four innings, freshman Calvin Uemura entered and set down six of the seven batters he faced. Uemura picked up the victory in his two innings of relief work, struking out two and hitting a batter. Sophomore Evan Ishihara picked up the save with a 1-2-3 seventh inning.
Ryan Delatori took the loss for Lahainaluna in his 3 1/3 innings backing starter Kaimana Ancog. Delatori allowed the sixth-inning unearned run and a hit to go with a walk.
Play continues Friday at Wong Stadium with a quadruple-header. Lahainaluna will open the schedule with an 11:00 a.m. game against Kea`au High School, while the host Warriors will take on Kamehameha-Hawai`i at 6:30 p.m. Waiakea will be playing to defend their league championship and first state championship from the 2012 season.
Lahainaluna 001 000 0 – 1 3 2
Waiakea 001 001 x – 2 6 0
Kea`au 3, Honoka`a 2
Konawaena 11, Hawai`i Prep 5
Hilo 8, Kamehameha-Hawai`i 8 (eight innings, time limit)
Kea`au vs. Lahainaluna – 11:00 a.m.
Honoka`a vs. Waiakea – 1:30 p.m.
Hilo vs. Konawaena – 4:00 p.m.
Waiakea vs. Kamehameha-Hawaii – 6:30 p.m.
10:00 a.m. – Kamehameha-Hawai`i vs. Honoka`a
12:30 p.m. – Kea`au vs. Hawai`i Preparatory Academy
4:00 p.m. – Waiakea vs. Konawaena
6:30 p.m. – Hilo vs. Lahainaluna