One step closer

LIHUE — The Kauai PONY 13 all-star team beat Long Beach 2-1 Sunday in Fullerton, Calif., at Amerige Park.

Kauai now moves to 2-0 in the Protect Our Nation’s Youth West Zone Tournament.

The win gives Kauai a day off before playing in the semifinals at 2 p.m. Tuesday, where they will face La Mirada, Calif., also 2-0 in the tournament.

“It was a big win,” said head coach Kirk Correa. “With the day off it enables us to have all of our pitching available for Tuesday’s game.”

Kauai rested its hopes on the right arm of Aaron Renaud Sunday, and he did not disappoint.

Renaud struck out seven, gave up three hits and one unearned run in a complete game game effort .

At the plate, Cody Taniguchi went 1 for 3 with a double and an RBI, while Ekolu Rivera also went 1 for 3 with an RBI.

La Mirada has defeated Campbell, Calif., 13-0 and Orangecrest, Calif., 12-4, so far in the tourney.

If Kauai beats La Mirada, they will play in the championship on Wednesday. Because it is a double-elimination tournament, Kauai will then have to win just one of two games to earn a trip to the PONY World Series.

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