HANAPEPE — Menehune senior outfielder Waika Corr knocked a walk-off hit for the home team.
Waimea High School’s varsity baseball team defeated Kauai High, 6-5, in the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader at Hanapepe Stadium.
“It’s an unexplainable feeling,” Corr said. “It’s just great knowing I came in clutch for my team to take that W.”
With two outs and the winning run at second base, Corr hit an RBI single to left-center field. Junior infielder Keaka Wisneski crossed home plate off Corr’s hit to score the game-winning run.
“One thing that was going through my head was, ‘I’m not making the last out, and I’m going to score this guy.’ That’s it,” Corr said.
Waimea (2-7 KIF, 1-2 2nd round) went into the bottom of the seventh inning facing a 1-run deficit.
Menehune senior infielder Tayedyn Francisco scored the tying run from second base as Wisneski got on base off a Red Raiders error.
“Just to get the W is fun in itself,” said Waimea head coach Larry Ephan. “I take my hat off to these boys. They didn’t quit all game long, and it’s been that way all season long. Just finally, we got some things to bounce our way and got the W.”
Kauai High (7-3 KIF, 2-2 2nd round) scored a go-ahead run in the top of the seventh. Red Raiders sophomore relief pitcher Keoua Sibayan hit a leadoff single which was then stretched to a triple after a Menehune error.
From there, sophomore pinch runner Jake Gushikuma crossed home plate on a wild pitch.
The Red Raiders scored three runs in the six inning to get a 4-2 lead. Senior outfielder Matthew Panit and junior starting pitcher Christian Manera, who moved to the outfield after being relieved in the fifth inning, hit back-to-back RBI triples in the frame.
“They did well. They hit the ball well, Waimea,” said Kauai head coach Hank Ibia. “Their pitcher threw well, too. So, we didn’t really hit at the right times. But like I said earlier, our youth (can show sometimes). Made a couple of errors with the younger boys.”
The Menehune then tied the game at 4-4 in the bottom of the sixth. Junior designated hitter Brennan Perreira hit an RBI double, and senior infielder Eli Nishihira got an RBI bunt single.
“It was great. We were actually involved in the game. We were in the game the whole time,” Ephan said. “We brought that will to compete this time. Kauai High School, you know they’re going to put the ball in play and they’re going to jump on you when they can. It was neat to have my boys answer back. Every run they scored, we came right back.”
Waimea got its six runs on seven hits, left four runners on base and recorded four errors. Corr was 2-3 and had one run along with his walk-off.
Menehune starting pitcher, sophomore Reyden Rull, was the winning pitcher. He went all seven innings, striking out three.
Kauai High totaled five runs on nine hits, left five runners on and recorded two errors. Red Raiders senior infielder Sam Nakata was a home run short of hitting for the cycle. He was 4-4 with a double, a triple and scored two runs.
Kauai sophomore relief pitcher Jacob Borrero, who started the game as an infielder, took the loss. He tallied two strikeouts before giving up the game-winning run in the seventh.
Kauai High went on to win the second game of the doubleheader, 16-2.
The Red Raiders plated 10 runs in the sixth inning to end the game early because of the 10-run mercy rule.
Kauai got those 16 runs on 10 hits, left six runners on base and recorded four errors. Waimea totaled two runs on six hits, left five runners on and had one error.
Kauai High will play at Kapaa (5-4 KIF, 2-1 2nd round) at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday.
Waimea will host Kapaa for a doubleheader Saturday at Hanapepe Stadium. The first game is scheduled for 10 a.m.