LIHUE — Spring showers didn’t slow down the Kauai Senior Softball League with a full slate of games at the Peter Rayno Softball Park in Hanamaulu and at the Isenberg Softball Stadium. The Islanders entertained four games at the Rayno, and the Aloha Kia Lihue A’s put the field in order for a triple-header in town.
Joe Bertucci got the Islanders focused early after setting up their home field. And that advantage got them more than ready to take on the dangerous and always tough Ohana. Tony Rapozo has Ohana playing at top form in their current win streak. The early morning game dueled to the very end in a tight contest. The Islanders held on for a 10-9 upset win.
Da Kruzers and the Hanamaulu Hillsiders went on a scoring spree in the second game. Peter Rayno fired up the Hillsiders and their bats came alive racking up their second highest run total of the year with 16 runs. Duane Girard put together a solid lineup for the game and their good hitting pounded out 20 runs. Da Kruzers pulled off a 20-16 slugfest.
Kuku’s Aces ran head long into the East Kauai Legends in the third game. Norman Holt has the Legends playing good ball and challenging the best. And the Legends best was too much for the Aces. East Kauai scored early and kept the pressure on at bat to post a 20-1 knockout.
The day wrapped up with a much anticipated game between the red hot Hana Hou and Kawaihau. Neal Zaslow has Hana Hou on track for a great inaugural season in Senior Softball. Henry Hee and Kawaihau have team experience on their side. Both squads feature run scoring hitting and solid defenses capable of shutting down any lineup. Hana Hou continued to use power hitting and big innings. Kawaihau was ready for the onslaught and rang up 16 runs. Hana Hou had an answer every time and powered their way to a convincing 23-16 victory.
A few passing showers kept the Isenberg field on the slick side, but the Lihue A’s had put the diamond in sparkling condition for a windy triple-header. After preparing the field, the A’s would be first up.
The Lihue A’s and the Ohana Motors Rebels went at it in a battle for second place in the league in the opening game. The two teams entered the contest tied with 9-2 records. The Rebels opened the game with a pair of runs only to relinquish the lead in the bottom of the first on three runs by the A’s. A five-run second inning put the Rebels ahead, but they couldn’t run away. Dwight Fujii had the A’s come through with solid hitting and aggressive base running to score 11 runs over the final four innings. Gary Yates had his Rebels respond with a three-run sixth inning and six-run seventh inning to put the game away with Ohana Motors, taking a 21-14 win.
David went up against Goliath in the second morning game as West Kauai took on the Keonimana Gents. Al Magno and West Kauai came up with a few surprises blasting a several extra base hits to rally for five runs against a smothering defense. The Gents took charge of the game early on and powered their way to a 19-5 win for their 12th of the season without a loss.
The luncheon contest pitted Barteks and Solid Steel with just a game between them in the standings. Tom Christy had Solid Steel on a three-game win streak and wanted to close the gap in the standings. Pat Baniaga and Barteks were looking to rebound after dropping their last game to the Lihue A’s. Solid Steel went on the attack early and ran up a lead while holding Barteks scoreless for the first few innings. The Steel continued to add runs when Barteks rallied for five runs only to fall short. Solid Steel continued their climb in the standings with an 18-5 triumph.
The Keonimana Gents remain atop the league standings with 12 wins and zero losses. The Ohana Motors Rebels captured sole possession of second place at 9-2 while the Aloha Kia Lihue A’s are in control of third with a 9-3 record. Ohana, the Rookies and Solid Steel are a half game back with 8-3 records. Hana Hou, Barteks and East Kauai Legends round out the top half of the league. Kawaihau along with the Islanders are right behind. Da Kruzers, Kuku’s Aces, West Kauai and the Hanamaulu Hillsiders remain in the hunt but have some work cut out for them.
The Senior season returns to the sunny West Side for a weekend with games in Hanapepe and Kaumakani. Hana Hou gets their first crack at hosting a set of four games at their home diamond at Hanapepe Softball Stadium. This will be the first time the leagues two new teams square off when Hana Hou will take on Solid Steel. The second game has the Hanamaulu Hillsiders and the East Kauai Legends mixing it up. Barteks will be at home against the Ohana Motors Rebels in the third game. And the long morning will conclude with Da Kruzers tangling with Kawaihau.
Down the road at the tropical wonder Wally Sonoda Field in Kaumakani, Kuku’s Aces will roll out the welcome mat for their three games. The Aces opens the day with the resurgent Islanders. Ohana will have their hands full when the Keonimana Gents come out west for the mid morning match up. The finale will have West Kauai going up against the Rookies.