Movers close year
with a win

The Summer League team took 15
in row after returning from a trip
to the Far East

The Hawaii Island Movers completed a second successful season under head coach Rich Olsen yesterday by winning the 2004 Hawaii International Baseball Championship Tournament at Murakami Stadium.

Daniel Miramontes lined a 1-1 pitch over first base that landed just fair down the right-field line to score Mark Veneri from third base with the winning run in the bottom of the ninth inning as the Movers edged the Kansai (Japan) Big 6 All Stars 3-2.

"I was looking for a fastball and I got a fastball," said Miramontes, who plays the outfield for UC Irvine.

The Movers, trailing 2-1 entering the inning, loaded the bases with two outs and tied the score when leadoff batter Herman Riddick was hit in the head by a 2-2 pitch by Kansai's fourth pitcher, Kenji Mikita.

The Movers finished the summer with a 14-game winning streak, not losing after returning from their trip to the Far East.

The Movers broke a 0-0 tie in the fourth inning when Hawaii Rainbow recruit Steve Bralver and D.J. Hollingsworth singled to start the inning and moved up a base on Dane Marcouiller's sacrifice bunt. Bralver scored on Aaron Markel's grounder to short when catcher Kenichi Sakuma dropped Kazuya Fujita's high throw.

Kansai took a 2-1 lead in the seventh. The inning began with Yu Kanazawa reaching first safely on a throwing error by IM first baseman Luis Avila, whose toss was behind pitcher Marc Nobriga covering the bag.

Syota Otosu sacrificed Kanazawa to second. Pinch hitter Mitsuaki Morita walked. Masato Akamatsu doubled to left-center field, scoring Kanazawa. Morita scored on Ryo Hirose's high bouncer to second.

Hawaii compiled a 17-5-3 record this summer, with all three ties coming on their trip to South Korea and Japan.

"When you do the goodwill thing, unless something is said before the game, you play nine innings," said Olsen, who said the trip was a once-in-a-lifetime experience for almost all of the players.

"I'm sure it was the first time most of them got to visit South Korea. We got to go to Seoul when it was hit by a typhoon, so we went to the huge Itaewon shopping center.

"In Japan we watched a national tournament high school game in the Osaka Dome. When we wanted to go somewhere, we went by train and the players loved it. School was in session, so our players spent the days in classrooms chatting with students. At night, the Japanese players would stay in the dorms with our players and there was a lot of cultural exchange with this arrangement."

The Movers only had five games before heading to the Far East to play some tough competition. They faced a South Korean left-hander who threw in the low 90s with a wicked slider who was on the national team.

The Movers lost one, tied one and had a game rained out in South Korea, then went 2-2-2 in Japan.

"We got our schooling over there. When we came back we started playing good baseball," said Olsen. "The guys have responded well for themselves . We have a number of kids out of high school who are just heading to college and they were playing teams with older players. This bunch just seems to want to win all the time."

Olsen was pleased with the way Miramontes, Markel (UCLA), Kristopher Watts (Ohlone College), Jowen Murray-Thornton (Saint Louis), Shaun Kiriu (Punahou) and Keoni Ruth (Kamehameha, San Diego) provided leadership with their experience and hard play.

Olsen cited Nobriga (Saint Louis and headed to Hartnell College) and Tyler McCready (Iolani, Sierra JC) as being the leaders of the pitching staff.

"The attitude of this team was great all summer. They wanted to play. They came out early for extra batting practice and extra bullpen," said IM assistant coach Scott Murray. "Everyone hung together. There was no separation between the local players and the ones we brought in. They responded to what we told them and it showed."

Yesterday, the workhorse of the staff with 15 appearances as the closer, Davidson College's Jeffrey Soulage, pitched hitless ball for the final two innings to earn his first win of the summer.

Bruce Sugawa scattered nine hits in a complete-game victory as the Oahu Cubs took third place with a 4-3 win over Hiroshima Big 6 All Stars.

Oahu Cubs 4, Hiroshima 3
Oahu Cubs 000 121 000 -- 4 12 0
Hiroshima 200 000 001 -- 3 9 0

Bruce Sugawa and Robin Ho. Takashi Kato, Yuya Matsui (6), Takanori Aoyama (8) and Shinichi Kinoshita, Takahiro Kuninobu (6). W--Sugawa. L--Matsui.
Leading hitters--OC: Royce Fukuroku, 2-4, run; Franz Yuen, 3-4, run, RBI; Anthony Onitsuka, 2-4, 2b, run. Hiro: Masatoshi Okada, 2b; Kazuhiro Oda, 3b; Yuki Goto, 3-5, run; Kenta Akagi, 2b.

Island Movers 3, Kansai All-Stars 2
Kansai All-Stars 000 000 200 -- 2 4 1
Island Movers 000 100 002 -- 3 9 1

Minoru Iwata, Masayuki Tabayashi (4), Keiji Mikita (8) and Kenichi Sakuma, Syota Otosu (7). Matthew Hanson, Marc Nobriga (6), Isaac Kamai (7), Jeffrey Soulages (8) and Aaron Markel. W--Soulages. L--Mikita.
Leading hitters--KAS: Masato Akamatsu, 2-4, 2b, 3b, RBI. IM: Herman Reddick III, 2-4, 2b, RBI; Steve Bralver, 2-3, run; D.J. Hollingsworth, 2-4.



E-mail to Sports Editor


Text Site Directory:
[News] [Business] [Features] [Sports] [Editorial] [Do It Electric!]
[Classified Ads] [Search] [Subscribe] [Info] [Letter to Editor]
© 2004 Honolulu Star-Bulletin --