Tuesday, March 23, 1999
By George F. Lee, Star-Bulletin
Rainbow second baseman Michael Dartt turns a double play
as Fresno State's Tiny Guzman slides into second too late.
the best pitch
Yamashita, Mackenzie combineBy Al Chase
to lead Hawaii in opener of
the Rainbow Easter Tournament
Sean Yamashita and Ken Mackenzie almost equaled the number of innings they had pitched all season, which proved to be enough for Hawaii on the opening day of the 24th Rainbow Easter Tournament.
Yamashita made his first start for UH and lasted 4 innings, one out shy of qualifying for the victory. Previously, he had logged a total 6° innings of collegiate mound experience.
Mackenzie pitched one-hit ball over 3° innings to get credit for victory. The senior right-hander had worked just 4 innings in eight earlier appearances.
The Rainbows emerged with a 12-5 win over the Fresno State Bulldogs at Rainbow Stadium in a battle of teams with depleted pitching staffs following their three-game Western Athletic Conference series.
Yamashita, a 5-foot-8 right-hander, had trouble in the first inning when Brandon Gemoll deposited a wayward pitch over the right-field wall for a quick 2-0 FS lead. It was his second homer in two games.
By George F. Lee, Star-Bulletin
Hawaii's Sean Takamori slides home with a run for the
Rainbows, while Fresno State catcher Dan Duke covers
the plate, waiting for a throw that never came.
"That home run never should have happened," Yamashita said. "He (catcher Kenn Wakakuwa) called for an inside pitch, but it got too much of the plate."
"Sean pitched like a freshman. He went too deep into the count. You can't get away with that consistently. My idea is four pitches per guy," said Hawaii head coach Les Murakami.
Yamashita threw 95 pitches and reached three balls on seven of the 26 batters he faced. He walked four, struck out five and might have gone the required five innings except for a no catch by third baseman Matt Wheeler on a foul pop.
Joe Gerber's life at the plate was prolonged and he took advantage with a run-scoring triple off the right-field wall in the fifth. Yamashita fanned the next batter, which should have been the third out, but an RBI single by Anthony Acevedo and a walk to Gemoll ended his night.
The Rainbows (18-10) wasted little time retaking the lead, scoring four runs in the second with Rah-Miel Mitchell's two-run, line drive double into the left-field corner the key hit. Acevedo then dropped Sean Takamori's fly ball in left that helped set up the final two runs of the inning.
Lars Hansen reached base on a catcher's interference in the third and scored and a wild pickoff throw by reliever Shawn Hannah played a role in UH's four run fourth.
Jamie Aloy concluded the Hawaii scoring in the seventh with a 380-foot home run over the right-field wall. It was his first as well as UH's first at Rainbow Stadium this season.
"It was a change-up in or something he took something off of," said Aloy of the home run pitch. "I knew it was in the wheelhouse and I wanted to get extension."
He also knew it was gone, because the home run trot started as soon as he left the batter's box.
"The previous time I had wasted an at-bat (grounder to second) on a change-up away," Aloy said. "I kept telling myself to be patient. I've been getting antsy in the box because of all the walks (I've been getting)."
Mackenzie -- who's role has been to come into a game with men on base, get out of the inning, then sit down -- threw one pitch to end the fifth, then discovered things were going to be different.
"When I came into the dugout, the coaches told me I was going back out," said the 5-11, 225-pound Radford product, who has warmed up on numerous occasions this season without entering a game.
"I was getting ahead with my fastball just off the plate, then throwing my splitter. I haven't pitched that much this year, but throwing a lot in the bullpen helps," Mackenzie said.
"Mackenzie may not have a lot of stuff, but he throws strikes. Tonight he was magnificent," Murakami said.
Lane Nogawa played shortstop in place of starter Corey Miller again and was 3-for-4 to raise his average to .500 (12-for-24). Nogawa had three singles and a sacrifice fly and made Acevedo roam deep into left-center field to catch a long fly in his fifth at bat.
"Lane is the perfect filler. He's ready to play when you ask," said Murakami. "That's because he constantly works, doesn't complain and he's hitting better than three-fourths of our team. It's like having a safety blanket."
Scooter Martines sat out last night to rest his left shoulder, jammed trying for a diving catch Sunday. It's the same one he hurt making a diving catch in the San Jose State series.
Left-hander Randon Ho will start for the 'Bows tonight against Northwestern if he convinces Murakami he is ready.
"He has to tell me he's 100 percent," said the UH skipper, "otherwise I've got to think about it."
Hawaii Pacific 12, Northwestern 0:Eric Bentley pitched a four-hitter and Gabe Gerhardt was 4-for-4 with four RBIs to lead the Sea Warriors in a game called after seven innings due to the 12-run mercy rule. HPU scored in every inning but the second.
Travis Clutter and Deric Yanagisawa each had three hits for the NCAA Division II Sea Warriors, who enhance their power rating with every victory over a Division I team. Their 12 remaining games are against Division I teams.
Nittaidai 6, Hawaii-Hilo 5: The Eagles rallied for four runs in the eighth with Issei Higashikawa's two-run double tying the score. He later scored the game-winning run on Shigeru Yamasaki's single to left.
The Vulcans loaded the bases in the ninth with one out, but Pat Lynch grounded into a double play. Layne Takahashi led UHH with three hits and two RBIs.
Hawaii 12, Fresno St. 5Fresno St. Hawaii Pacific AB R H BI AB R H BI Gerber rf 4 1 1 1 Takamori rf 4 1 0 0 Creighton 2b 4 1 0 0 Honma rf 0 0 0 0 Acevedo lf 3 1 2 1 Dartt 2b 3 2 2 1 Gemoll 1b 3 1 1 2 Aloy 1b 4 2 2 4 Guzman cf 4 0 1 1 Nakano lf 4 1 1 0 Prieto dh 4 0 0 0 Baker lf 0 0 0 0 Duke c 4 0 0 0 Wakakuwa c 4 0 1 0 Garcia 3b 3 1 2 0 Hansen dh 1 3 0 1 Fanconi ss 3 0 0 0 Tanigawa ph 1 0 0 0 Bowlin ph 0 0 0 0 Nogawa ss 4 1 3 1 Wheeler 3b 3 0 2 0 Taguchi ph-3b 1 0 0 0 Mitchell cf 1 2 1 2 Totals 32 5 7 5 Totals 30 12 12 9 Fresno St. 200 020 010--5 7 4 Hawaii 041 400 30x--12 12 2E--Acevedo, Duke 2, Hannah, Wheeler, Mackenzie. DP--Fresno St. 2, Hawaii 3. LOB--Fresno St. 5, Hawaii 8.
2B--Dartt (6), Wheeler (1), Mitchell (1). 3B--Gerber (2). HR--Gemoll (4), Aloy (1). SB--Creighton (1), Dartt, Aloy (1). CS--Wakakuwa. SH--Takamori, Nakano, Wheeler. SF--Dartt, Nogawa.
Fresno St. IP H R ER BB SO Gonzalez (L,3-2) 2.1 7 5 2 2 0 Hannah 0.2 1 3 1 2 0 Field 0.2 1 1 1 1 0 Crivello 4.1 3 3 3 1 2 Hawaii IP H R ER BB SO Yamashita 4.2 5 4 4 4 5 Mackenzie (W,2-0) 3.1 1 1 0 0 3 Pribble 1.0 1 0 0 1 0WP--Hannah. Balk--Crivello. Catcher's interference--Duke. HBP--Wakakuwa (by Hannah), Mitchell (by Crivello).
Umpires--Guy Ogawa (plate), Keoki Torres (first), Gary Montalbo (third). A--1,272 (2,533 tickets sold).
24th Annual Rainbow
Hawaii 12, Fresno State 5
Nittaidai 6, Hawaii-Hilo 5
Hawaii Pacific 12, Northwestern 0
Hawaii Pacific vs. Hawaii-Hilo, 11 a.m.
Nittaidai vs. Fresno State, 2:30 p.m.
Northwestern vs. Hawaii, 6:37 p.m.
Fresno State vs. Hawaii Pacific, 11 a.m.
Hawaii-Hilo vs. Northwestern, 2:30 p.m.
Nittaidai vs. Hawaii, 6:37 p.m.