UH gets back on track by flattening Saint Mary's


POSTED: Wednesday, May 06, 2009

MORAGA, Calif. » Hawaii got back on track yesterday, pounding Saint Mary's 10-3 in a nonconference baseball game to end a five-game losing streak.

Whether the Rainbows can carry that into their four-game series at Fresno this weekend remains to be seen.

“;Just getting off the schneid was important,”; UH coach Mike Trapasso said. “;We haven't played well in a couple of weeks. We played well today. It's the best we played in a couple of weeks by far.”;

The Warriors (27-20) chased Gaels starter Taylor Reid in the first inning, getting three runs against the right-hander, who got a quick hook after retiring just one batter. Kolten Wong did the honors, hitting a three-run double to send Reid to the early shower.

Ryan Morford led off the game by flying out. Greg Garcia followed with a single, then Vinnie Catricala hit what should have been a double-play grounder to shortstop Chris Murphy. Instead, Murphy bobbled the ball and retired nobody. Kevin Macdonald followed with a walk, bringing Wong to the plate. He got ahead 3-1, then belted the ball to the fence in center to clear the bases.

“;I just got the right pitch,”; Wong said. “;I was looking for a pitch that I could drive and get the runs in. I got a fastball upper out. I just went with it and got the base hit.”;

Trapasso said UH's success started on the mound. In a staff game, Connor Little got the start and went four innings, allowing just one run on four hits. Ryan Davis followed and went 3 1/3 innings of shutout ball, allowing just three hits.

However, after Reid's departure, the Warriors' bats went silent. Mark Anderson came on and picked off Wong. He retired the next 10 hitters and ended up going 6 2/3 innings of one-hit, shutout ball. The score was still 3-1 when Anderson left after the seventh.

“;I was getting a little nervous there,”; Trapasso said. “;We put up six zeros after that and we kind of sat on it for a while, which you can't do.”;

Finally, Hawaii broke it open in the eighth and ninth. An errant pickoff attempt by Kyle Barraclough scored one run and Macdonald got a sacrifice fly on a diving catch by Ryan Young. The Warriors put up five runs In the ninth to turn it into a rout.

Saint Mary's put the first two runners on in the ninth against Lenny Linsky. Alex Capaul came on, and although he allowed the inherited runners to score, he was able to finish the game off with little sweat.

“;It was a closer game than 10-3,”; Trapasso said. “;You get a lead and hold it with your pitchers and then you separate yourselves. And that's what we've been doing for eight weeks until the last couple of weeks.”;

Next comes a defining weekend between two teams that expected to be battling it out for the Western Athletic Conference championship. The defending NCAA champion Fresno State Bulldogs are in sixth place in the seven-team conference at 6-10, 22-25. Hawaii, which was ranked part of the year, is in fifth at 9-10.

They play four games beginning tomorrow night in Fresno. If either team can sweep the series—which concludes UH's regular-season WAC schedule—it will resuscitate the season.

Wong said it was important to get a win heading into the big series.

“;It's good for our confidence,”; Wong said. “;We can go into Fresno with some confidence now.”;

Said Trapasso: “;We've just got to play better than we have in the last couple of weeks. It starts with the guys on the mound. If we pitch like we did today, we'll have a chance in every game. If we pitch like we have the last couple of weeks, we'll be in for a struggle.”;

Tomorrow's game starts at 3 p.m. That's followed by another 3 p.m. game on Friday and a 10 a.m. double-header on Saturday.

WAC standings

 Conference    Overall
Nevada96.600 24-22
San Jose State86.571 1/232-16
New Mexico State97.563 1/238-10
Louisiana Tech119.550 1/226-18
Hawaii910.474 227-20
Fresno State610.375 3 1/222-25
Sacramento State59.357 3 1/224-21



Hawaii 10, St. Mary's 3
Stanford 9, San Jose State 8


Stephen F. Austin at Louisiana Tech


Hawaii at Fresno State

Hawaii 10, St. Mary's 3

Morford 2b5221Fazio dh5030
Garcia ss5231Miller cf3010
Catricala 3b3101Channing 3b4000
Macdonald 1b3101Jensen lf3000
Wong cf4013Aliotti 1b4220
Hernandez dh3000Young rf2000
Hoey pr0100Melgosa ph0100
Montplaisir lf4120DeMello c4020
Johnson rf3100Murphy ss3011
Fujii c4111Collins ph1000
     Castelum 2b4011

St. Mary's0100000023103

E—Macdonald; Murphy; Barraclough. DP—Hawaii 1. LOB—Hawaii 4; St. Mary's 7. 2B—Morford 2; Wong; Aliotti; DeMello; Murphy. SH—Johnson; Miller. SF—Catricala; Macdonald. SB—Wong; Miller. CS—Fazio.

Little (W, 3-0)441011
Davis3 1/330013
Reid (L, 2-6)1/323210
Anderson6 2/310016

PB—Fujii 2.

Umpires—Josh Gottlieb (Plate); Sid Aguilar (First); Ryan Kilby (Third).

T—2:52. A—204.