'Bows battle back


POSTED: Monday, April 06, 2009

Kevin Macdonald is the first to admit he could use a few more hits this season, but he's sure picking the right time to get them.





at Santa Clara tomorrow




The junior first baseman came up with a go-ahead, two-run single for the second consecutive day and Hawaii scored seven unanswered runs to beat San Jose State 7-4 yesterday and take three of four in the series in front of a Les Murakami Stadium crowd of 2,001.

Sean Montplaisir hit a two-run homer and Macdonald finished 2-for-4 with a double and two RBIs as Hawaii (19-10, 3-1 Western Athletic Conference) won for the sixth time in seven games. The Rainbows sit in a tie for first place with Nevada and New Mexico State after the first week of league play.

“;Lately it seems like I've been getting hits when we've needed them and not when nobody is on (base),”; said Macdonald, who leads the team with 26 RBIs despite a .240 average. “;But that's been the biggest thing for us, getting timely hits, and that's why we're winning.”;

Hawaii trailed 4-0 early, but battled back to pull within one on a two-run homer from Montplaisir and a solo shot by Landon Hernandez.

Greg Garcia chased Spartans starter Scott Sobczak (4-1) with a double in the fifth inning that put men on second and third with nobody out. Reliever Anthony Vega got Ryan Morford to ground out without the runners advancing and intentionally walked Vinnie Catricala, who is hitting .349 and riding a six-game hitting streak, to get to Macdonald.

Macdonald took a strike before sending an 0-1 pitch up the middle for a two-run single to give Hawaii a 5-4 lead. Kolten Wong followed with the first of his two RBI singles to give the 'Bows a two-run lead.

“;When Vinnie is hitting in front of me, they're going to put him on a lot in situations like that,”; Macdonald said. “;I'm just happy it fell in there.”;

Hawaii starter Connor Little allowed four runs in 1 1/3 innings, but relievers Jesse Moore and Sam Spangler combined to go the rest of the way without allowing a run.

Spangler (5-0) earned the win with 4 2/3 innings of relief. San Jose State sent the tying run to the plate in the ninth inning after two singles and a wild pitch put men on second and third. With Lenny Linsky and Josh Slaats warm in the bullpen, Hawaii coach Mike Trapasso stayed with the sophomore left-hander, who struck out Kyle Bellows looking to end the game.

“;If we had one out, I probably go with Lenny or Slaats, but Sam was throwing strikes,”; Trapasso said.

Montplaisir, who started his first game since March 23 at Oregon State, got the Rainbows back into it after San Jose State's early lead, blasting a two-run homer to right in the second inning to cut the Spartans' lead in half.

“;After them putting up two 2-spots, for us to put together some runs right after that says a lot,”; Montplaisir said. “;It's been the name of the game for us this season so far.”;

San Jose State (20-8, 1-3 WAC) had won 10 of 12 games entering the series, but now finds itself in a quick two-game hole to start the conference season.

“;I think Hawaii's pitching dominated us for four games,”; San Jose State coach Sam Piraro said. “;We did not play poorly and in some cases we played pretty well, but offensively I'm the most disappointed because I thought we would be able to carry over what we'd been doing the past several games.”;

The Rainbows embark on the first of their three remaining regular-season road trips today to play a game at Santa Clara tomorrow before heading to Reno to take on Nevada, which won three of four this weekend at Louisiana Tech. Hawaii's other two road trips are at New Mexico State, which is also 3-1 in league play and at Fresno State, the defending national champion.

Hawaii also sprinkles in nonconference Tuesday road games at No. 3 Arizona State and Saint Mary's (Calif.)

WAC Standings

Nevada31.750 28-4
New Mexico State31.750 19-10
Hawaii31.750 14-16
Fresno State00.000 116-12
San Jose State13.250 220-8
Sacramento State13.250 217-12
Louisiana Tech13.250 213-12


Louisiana Tech 17, Nevada 14

New Mexico State 15, Sacramento State 5

Fresno State 9, Cal State Bakersfield 2

Hawaii 7, San Jose State 4

Tomorrow (All times Hawaii time)

Fresno State at Cal State Bakersfield, 11 a.m.

California at Sacramento State, 11:30 a.m.

Hawaii at Santa Clara, 3 p.m.

Hawaii 7, San Jose State 4

Hertler 2b4230Garcia ss4120
Bellows ss5111Morford 2b3000
Martin lf/cf3001Catricala 3b3110
Bona dh3110Macdonald 1b4122
Bruns rf4010Wong cf4022
Valine 3b4022Van Doornum dh3000
Stienstra 1b3020Johnson ph1010
Rahier c3000Hernandez c2211
Klauer ph1000Montplaisir lf3112
Gale cf2000Roquemore rf3100
Shaffer ph/lf2010Little p0000
Sobczak p0000Moore p0000
Vega p0000Spangler p0000
Heil p0000
San Jose State220000000 4111

E—Bellows. DP—SJSU 1; Hawaii 4. LOB—SJSU 7; Hawaii 4. 2B—Hertler; Garcia; Catricala; Macdonald. 3B—Bellows. HR—Hernandez; Montplaisir. HBP—Hernandez. SH—Morford; Montplaisir. CS—Macdonald.

Sobczak (L, 4-1)455412
Little1 1/344430
Spangler (W, 5-0)4 2/350001

Umpires—Kelly Gonzales (Plate); Jim Garman (First); Jason Rogers (Third).

T—2:39. A— 2,001.