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Campbell quiets Mililani


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POSTED: Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The Campbell Sabers are probably the first to let bad memories fade into the distance.

In case they had forgotten, however, it was only 10 months ago that they lost a 2-0 lead in the seventh inning, allowing Mililani to score four times—three on unearned runs—for a two-run Trojans win.

Mililani went on to win the state championship. Campbell? The Sabers moved on, but they didn't exactly forget. Ace Katie Manuma, victimized by poor defense in that state-tourney game, got strong play from her teammates and scattered six hits yesterday in a 7-0 win over No. 1-ranked Mililani on a gusty afternoon at the Sabers' field.

Fifth-ranked Campbell improved to 6-0 in the Oahu Interscholastic Association Red West. Mililani took its first loss after four wins.

“;Every time we play Mililani, that's our state championship,”; Sabers coach David Perreira said. “;Katie was a lot better today. She got a lot of jam shots, a lot of ground balls.”;

Manuma, who will play at BYU next season, struck out three and walked one. In 26 plate appearances by Mililani, only four batters reached a three-ball count against her.

“;I trust my defense. All I have to do is keep my pitches low. I have a good defense behind me,”; said Manuma, who was also 2-for-4 and scored twice.

The top of Mililani's lineup—Kristi Oshiro, Rebecca Lee and Courtney Senas—combined for a 4-for-9 effort in the state-tourney game. This time, Manuma limited the trio to a 2-for-8 afternoon. Manuma, the returning Star-Bulletin pitcher of the year, limited Senas, the reigning position player of the year, to one hit, which came in the sixth inning.

Meanwhile, Campbell's top three hitters—Gerika Pantohan, Sharae Esprecion and Manuma—were a force this time. They were 0-for-7 in the state-tourney matchup with the Trojans, but were 5-for-12 yesterday, scoring five runs.

“;Last year, Katie was bringing it. We just have to step up our game when we play her,”; Oshiro said.

The Sabers took the win in stride.

“;We're taking it one game at a time. We're not even focused on states yet,”; Manuma said. “;Mililani lost a lot of starters and they're trying to rebuild.”;

The bright spot for the visiting Trojans was the pitching of sophomore Alysia Maddison, who permitted just one run on four hits in five innings of relief. The tall left-hander struck out three and walked just one, but by the time she entered, Campbell was in control.

The Sabers scored three times in the first inning and added three more runs in the second. Esprecion tripled to right-center and scored on Manuma's infield single to give the Sabers a 1-0 lead.

Nicole Arata followed with a single to left and Collette Black followed with a bunt that Mililani pitcher T.J. Fernandez fielded. Fernandez turned to third, but realized it was too late for a force out, and Black reached first safely to load the bases.

Fernandez then hit Daylene Antonio on an 0-2 pitch to force in a run, and with two outs, Taylor Rosa-Ramon was also hit by a pitch, giving the Sabers an early three-run lead.

Fernandez gave up consecutive singles to start the second inning before giving way to Maddison. Manuma came through in the second with a single that scored Pantohan. A sacrifice fly to right by Black brought Esprecion home, and courtesy runner Tiana Rosario raced in from third on a wild pitch as the Sabers surged to a 6-0 lead.

Campbell tacked on an unearned run in the fourth, when Antonio singled to right, scoring Arata from second.

Win or lose, the Sabers go back to their “;normal”; routine today. Instead of another day practicing under the hot Ewa sun, they'll hit the weight room, and then do a 1-hour, 45-minute yoga workout led by Perreira and conditioning coach Ryan Canon.

“;They bought into it, especially when the coach was sweating his butt off,”; Canon said.

 

                                                                                                                                                           
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T.J. Fernandez, Alysia Maddison (2) and Rebecca Lee. Katie Manuma and Daylene Antonio. W—Manuma. L—Fernandez.

Leading hittersMil: Andi Felise 2-3. Camp: Sharae Esprecion 2-4, 3b, 2 runs; Manuma 2-4, 2 runs, RBI; Nicole Arata 2-3, 2 runs.