GEORGE F. LEE / GLEE@STARBULLETIN.COM
Pearl City's Bryson Nakamura made his delivery to Kamehameha-Maui's Aaron Asato in the Chargers' 10-0 over the Warriors yesterday. The Chargers will now face Kaiser today at 5 p.m. in the semifinals of the state tournament at Les Murakami Stadium. CLICK FOR LARGE
Chargers show Warriors mercy
Pearl City blanks Kamehameha-Maui 10-0
When the Pearl City baseball team defeated Kaiser in the semifinals of the Oahu Interscholastic Association postseason tournament last week en route to claiming the league title, Chargers coach Mel Seki figured he could wait until next year before preparing for the Cougars again.
However, with a 10-0, mercy-rule-shortened blanking of Kamehameha-Maui in the quarterfinal round of the Wally Yonamine Foundation/HHSAA Baseball State Championship tournament yesterday evening at Les Murakami Stadium, Pearl City advances to tonight's semifinal clash and re-match with Kaiser. First pitch is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. at Murakami Stadium.
All games at Les Murakami Stadium unless otherwise noted.
Seeds: 1. Punahou. 2. Pearl City. 3. Waiakea. 4. St. Anthony.
Game 5: Kaiser 2, Waiakea 1
6: KS-Hawaii 8, St. Anthony 3
7: Pearl City 10, KS-Maui 0
8: Punahou 8, Hilo 2
9: Kailua vs. Mililani, 10 a.m. (CORP)
10: Kauai vs. Kalani, 10 a.m. (CORP)
11: St. Anthony vs. Hilo, 12:30 p.m.
12: Waiakea vs. KS-Maui, 3 p.m.
13: Kaiser vs. Pearl City, 5 p.m.
14: KS-Hawaii vs. Punahou, 8 p.m.
15: Consolation championship--Winners Games 9 & 10, 11 a.m.
16: Fifth-place game--Winners Games 11 & 12, 1:30 p.m.
17: Third-place game--Losers Games 13 & 14, 4 p.m.
18: Championship game--Winners Games 14 & 13, 7 p.m.
"That was the goal: to come out swinging and to get an early jump on a Maui team we thought could be a problem," Seki said. "I didn't expect a 10-run rule like this, especially in the state tournament."
Bryson Nakamura picked up the victory for Pearl City, as the starter scattered five hits and struck out one in four innings. The junior also helped his cause at the plate, singling, reaching on an error and driving in three runs.
"It wasn't as good as I thought it would be," said Nakamura, who was pleased with the team's overall performance, but had hoped to be more efficient than the 71 pitches he threw. "I think I could have gone the whole game, but I threw a lot of pitches in the early innings."
The Chargers (12-3) took control early, putting four runs on the board in the bottom of the first inning. After Rorry Nakayama and Ryne Asato led off the frame with singles, Nakamura reached when shortstop AJ Alexander dropped his line drive, and Nakayama came around to score on the error. Kellen Ushijima moved the runners over to second and third with a sacrifice bunt, and designated hitter Jeffrey Domingo lived up to his title and drove in both runners with a double to right field.
Domingo increased the advantage to 4-0 when he moved to third as Carlton Tanabe reached on third baseman Kelton Kealoha's error, and scored on Chad Quillopo's sacrifice fly. Pearl City added another run in the second frame thanks to the speed of Nakayama. The center fielder reached on an infield single, stole second and third, and scored on a Nakamura fielder's choice to second base.
The Chargers kept the offensive assault going and padded their lead in the third frame, with three runs coming with two outs, despite only hitting one ball out of the infield. Quillopo and Jordan DeKneef bunted for infield singles, and Nakayama walked to load the bases. Acosta drove in a run on an infield single to Alexander at shortstop, and Nakamura drove in DeKneef and Nakayama on a line-drive single up the middle.
"The thing I liked was when we scored the three runs after two out, with two bunts that started it off, that was beautiful," Seki said.
With two more runs in the sixth inning, Pearl City increased its advantage to 10 runs, and Carlton Tanabe's RBI single served as the walk-off hit as a team leading by 10 or more runs after five innings gets the win in accordance with the HHSAA's mercy rule.
The Warriors (11-6) were led at the plate by designated hitter Mason Castillon's 2-for-3 performance. Aaron Asato was saddled with the loss after he allowed 13 hits and six earned runs in the complete-game effort.
The short game may prove beneficial for the Chargers, who must come back with the same intensity tonight against a youthful Kaiser squad that is fundamentally sound and well-coached.
"I know that (Kaiser coach) Peter (Ho) is going to be ready for us," said Seki. "The two of us didn't expect to be here this far. Kaiser is young and they're going to battle, I know it, and it's going to be another exciting game."
At Les Murakami Stadium
|Pearl City (12-3)
Aaron Asato and Kamahele Chow. Bryson Nakamura, Cory Yuh (5) and Carlton Tanabe. W
Leading hitters--KSM: Mason Castillon 2-3. PC: Rorry Nakayama 2-3, 3 runs, 2 sb's; Ryne Acosta 3-3, 2b, RBI, 2 runs; Nakamura 3 RBIs; Jeffrey Domingo 2b, 3 RBIs; Chad Quillopo 2-2, RBI.
Punahou 8, Hilo 2
The Buffanblu kept their hopes of a fourth straight state crown alive with a convincing victory over the Vikings in the final quarterfinal bout of the evening.
Punahou picked up three runs in the first and pushed the lead to 4-0 with another in the third. But Hilo countered with two runs in the bottom half, as Cortney Arruda doubled home Ryan Fukunaga and scored when right fielder Kimo Makaula booted the ball to the outfield wall.
As they have done all season long, the Buffanblu remained calm and stretched out the lead to 7-2 on Evan Bisho's RBI single in the fourth and Tyler Young's two-run single in the fifth. Young drove in another insurance run in the seventh on a sharp single to left.
Junior Jeeter Ishida earned the win for Punahou with a 108-pitch complete game in which he struck out 10 Vikings.
At Les Murakami Stadium
Jeeter Ishida and Zachary Kometani. Casey Koizumi, Jordan Otis (5) and Kiley Kawazoe. W
Leading hitters--Pun: Kometani 2-3, 2 runs; Paul Sneider 3b, 2 RBIs, 2 runs; Tyler Young 2-3, 3 RBIs. Hilo: Cortney Arruda 2b, run.