Posted: May 10, 2012 - 3:22pm
Waimea tops KS-Hawaii, 9-4, earns spot in D2 title game
Small ball, that is.
The Menehunes put on a bunting clinic to push across six runs in a pivotal fourth inning, highlighted by BJ Freitas' bunt single that scored Mikeo Rita with the go-ahead run, as Waimea went on to defeat Kamehameha-Hawaii by a score of 9-4 in the first Division II semifinal of the Wally Yonamine Foundation Baseball State Championships at Les Murakami Stadium.
A leadoff walk, led to a bunt single, which led to a bouncing single to score a run, then a stolen base, followed by another bunt single that scored another yet and then a squeeze bunt to score one more. It was just that kind of inning for the Menehunes, who really could do no wrong.
"I told our guys, our small game is gonna work, we just gotta just execute the bunts, and they bunted well." said Waimea head coach Michael Rita.
But early on it was Kamehameha-Hawaii who would hold the advantage, opening up the first with a two-run single by Bronson Pulgados.
A Brock Ephan RBI single in the top of the second would cozy the score up at 2-1, but Keanu Dudois-Isa would lace an RBI double to left in the bottom of the inning to push the Warriors' cushion back to two. Ephan would strike again in the top of third with another RBI single to halve the lead once again.
"Coaches tell us to see us to 'see ball, hit ball' and that's pretty much what I did." said Ephan of his back-to-back RBI base knocks.
Following that six-run outburst in the fourth, Waimea would bring home another run in the fifth on a bases-loaded walk to complete the scoring for the Menehunes.
Kamehameha-Hawaii would have their chances, but could just not find the hits when they needed them, stranding runners in the fifth and sixth innings.
The Warriors would score a run in the last of the seventh on a single by Pulgados to score Kaimana Moike, but Waimea would force a routine grounder to short on the next at-bat to end it.
The win puts the Menehunes into their second title game in the last three years, and extends the streak of Kauai teams in the Division II final to five out of a possible five.
May 10, 2012
Waimea third baseman Acetyn Emayo makes the throw for the final out against Kamehameha-Hawaii. Brien Ing | SL
Kamehameha-Hawaii's Matt Chun is tagged out at second by Waimea's Jordan Kamakea. Brien Ing | SL