Rainbows rally


POSTED: Monday, February 23, 2009

Hawaii turned to a freshman to stop the bleeding on opening weekend, and Matt Sisto didn't disappoint.




UC Irvine4

        NEXT UP

        at Minnesota on Thursday

Sisto capped a solid three days of pitching by the Rainbows with their best performance yet, allowing two runs over seven innings without a walk as Hawaii avoided a four-game sweep against No. 9 UC Irvine with a 7-4 victory yesterday in front of a Les Murakami Stadium crowd of 1,202.

Hawaii (1-3) held Irvine (3-1) to five runs or less in all four games, but couldn't find the timely hits to take advantage. That changed yesterday, as the Rainbows put two runs on the board in the first, and four more in the third, highlighted by a two-run single by Kevin Macdonald.

“;I was trying to redeem myself,”; said Macdonald, who struck out with runners on second and third in the first. “;I got lucky. He hung a curveball with two strikes and it got down the line. It could have gone right to him and been a double play.”;

Instead, it chased Anteaters starter Nick Hoover, who allowed five runs and four hits in 2 1/3 innings. Hawaii put two more runs on the board in the inning on an RBI double by Landon Hernandez and a two-out single by Shane Hoey to go up 6-1.

“;We should be able to put up more than five runs every single game,”; said third baseman Vinnie Catricala, who was 2-for-2 with three runs scored and finished the series hitting .500 (6-for-12).

The seven runs the Rainbows posted were more than enough for Sisto, who struck out four in seven innings. The 6-foot-5 freshman did not pitch his senior season because of an arm injury.

“;That is the longest start I've had in over a year,”; said Sisto, who estimated he threw between 25 and 30 innings in an offseason league. “;I was just throwing fastball down and away and down and in with a good changeup trying to hit my spots.”;

The Rainbows dropped both games of Saturday's doubleheader by a run, but looked a lot more sloppy in the second game, failing to move runners over and allowing two costly runs on errors.

Yesterday, the 'Bows didn't commit an error, only walked two batters, and got two big two-out hits that scored runs.

“;Today we played as complete a game as we played during the series,”; Hawaii coach Mike Trapasso said. “;We played good all weekend against a really good team.

“;It's frustrating because you look at last night and you have a chance to win the series as a whole, but we made enough mistakes to where we couldn't split or win the series.”;

Hawaii's starting rotation was one of the big question marks to open the series. With Jared Alexander still coming back from an arm injury, Hawaii trotted out four starters to the mound who had a combined four career starts. Only Alex Capaul, the only guy with starting experience, didn't make it through at least six innings. Until Josh Slaats gave up two runs in the ninth yesterday, the Rainbows' bullpen had only allowed one run all series.

“;That was the biggest question as far as just the untested guys,”; Trapasso said. “;We felt comfortable feeling that our guys were going to throw it in there and give us a chance from what we see in practice, but you still never know.”;

Slaats, who replaces Friday starter Jayson Kramer as the team's stopper, walked two and hit a batter. Ryan Fisher tagged him for an RBI single with two outs in the ninth and Eric Deragisch followed with a run-scoring double before Tony Asaro struck out to end the game.



Hawaii 7, UC Irvine 4

Madigan rf4000Wong cf3100
Orloff ss3120Garcia ss3100
Bell lf4110Catricala 3b2321
Larson c3111Van Doornum dh4010
Cusick 1b4001Macdonald 1b3113 
Stevenson 2b4000Johnson rf4010
Fisher dh4111Hernandez c4121
Crumlich 3b2000Hoey 2b3011
Olivares ph0000Torigoe ph0000
Deragisch 3b1011Morford 2b0000
Olson, cf2010Montplaisir lf4000
Bardeen ph1000Sisto p0000
Asaro lf1000Slaats p0000
Hoover p0000
Dufour p0000
Hamilton p0000
UC Irvine100100002470

DP—Hawaii 1. LOB—UC Irvine 5; Hawaii 5. 2B—Orloff; Bell; Deragisch; Catricala; Van Doornum; Johnson; Hernandez. HBP—Orloff; Catricala. SF—Macdonald. SB—Larson. CS—Olson; Morford.

Hoover (L, 0-1)2 1/345523
Dufour3 2/331114
Sisto (W, 1-0)752204

Umpires—Scott Higgins (Plate); Joe Burleson (First); Billy Speck (Third).

T—2:37. A—1,202.