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Lihue A’s, Ohana, Rookies roll

PUHI — The Kauai Senior Softball League got seven games in on a sunny Saturday with contests at the Peter Rayno Park and Rebels Park in Puhi. The Aloha Kia Lihue A’s were scheduled to host a triple-header at their home field at Isenberg when a conflict arose with KIF girls softball and the gentlemen choose to relocate all games to nearby Hanamaulu. The team tents were up early and fans packed the park in Puhi as the Ohana Motors Rebels readied the tree lined all-turf stadium for four big games.

Dwight Fujii has the Aloha Kia Lihue A’s in top form right behind the league leaders in the pennant race. They started the day in Hanamaulu with wily Kawaihau, who has been turning in good performances of their own. Henry Hee had Kawaihau swinging away while they put together a dozen runs. The A’s continued their steady play and answered with 16 of their own to come away with an important win at 16-12.

Frank Bukoski and Tony Rapozo have Ohana flying high lately with impressive wins, but they got surprised by a buzzsaw attack from Da Kruzers in the second game of the day. Duane Girard got a great effort from his Kruzers to force the game down to the wire. Ohana escaped the battle with a narrow 11-10 victory. The win keeps Ohana on pace at the top of the standings along with the Lihue A’s.

Hana Hou continues to be the hot team in the league in their first year of play. Neil Zaslow has the club racking up wins for an impressive rookie season. The Peter Rayno Softball Stadium wrapped up the day with Hana Hou and Kuku’s Aces going at it. Kuku DeCosta raised the Aces battle flag and went to work knocking in seven runs. Hana Hou continued to show their prowess at the plate and bashed 19 runs on the board to take their ninth win of the year on a 19-7 win with a 12-run lead.

The sun was shining brightly at the Rebel Softball Park in Puhi. Fans and teams showed up early to set the tents and raise their flags. With four games on tap the park was a sell-out well before the first contest.

The Ohana Motors Rebels and Solid Steel took the field for the first game of the day. Tom Cristy and the Steel had their sites on this contest when the schedule was first posted waiting to go up against the Rebels. The game was equally important for Gary Yates and the Rebels.

After trading runs in the first inning the game got tight in the third with Solid Steel opening it up posting four runs only to have the Rebels respond with five in the bottom of the inning. The Rebels then went on an 11-2 run behind two home runs from Aaron Garcia to put the game away, 17-8. The win closes out the first round of play for the Ohana Motors Rebels with a 12-2 record.

The Rookies and the Islanders went on a rampage to the delight of the capacity crowd scoring 33 runs in seven innings. Joe Bertucci has the Islanders running like a well-oiled machine with solid hitting and a smothering defense.

The Rookies, under Coach Alan Horikawa, are quietly waiting to take over the league just off the lead even with Ohana and the A’s. Both of these clubs came to play and peppered the expansive field with sharp hits in the gap and bombs deep in the outfield.

The Islanders stayed even for awhile in the run scoring challenge but could not keep up with the power of the Rookies. The Rookies used a monstrous home run by Nelson Chiba off the top of the left field pavilion to capture an exciting 21-12 conquest.

The day continued with the East Kauai Legends taking on West Kauai. Norman Holt and Paul Guzman guided the Legends to one of their more productive games. Al Magno and West Kauai keep making good strides and are in every game with an improving offense.

The Legends were as hot as the park barbecue grills and went to work quickly pounding out three consecutive five-run innings. West Kauai was able to mount a mid game rally but fell short with the East Kauai Legends coming away with a 17-5 knock out.

Pat Baniaga brought Barteks to town to take on the Hanamaulu Hillsiders in the finale. Pete Rayno and the Hillsiders wanted to keep their momentum rolling and played up and up with Barteks to open the game.

The huge field became an advantage for Barteks place hitting attack as they let the bombs fly. They also used their speedy outfield to trim the Hillsiders effort and shorten the game on the 12-run rule. Barteks cruised to a 16-4 triumph.

The Keonimana Gents were off this week and remain leading the league with a 12-1 record. The Ohana Motors Rebels closed out their first round with a record of 12-2 in second place. The Aloha Kia Lihue A’s, Ohana, and Rookies are right behind at 10-3. Hana Hou is off to a great start in sixth with a 9-4 record.

Solid Steel is also off to an impressive beginning running up an 8-5 mark with Bartek’s close behind. The East Kauai Legends, Islanders and Kawaihau are knotted in ninth place followed by Da Kruzers, Hanamaulu Hillsiders, Kuku’s Aces and West Kauai.

The Senior Softball League will close out the first round of play with a pair of four game slates in the Gardens at Wailua Houselots and the Bryan Baptiste Sports Complex Softball Stadium. Kawaihau will take a turn at hosting a quadruple-header at the cosy confines in Wailua. The Keonimana Gents will roll out the welcome mat in Kapaa at the Softball Stadium.

Kawaihau has Barteks on tap in the opening game. It will be a doubleheader for Kawaihau as they take on the Islanders in the second game. Da Kruzers and Kuku’s Ace’s will put it all on the line in the third game. And the afternoon finds the Islanders going up against West Kauai.

The Gents and the Rookies will square off in Kapaa in a huge early morning match. Solid Steel will try to end their skid when they challenge the Aloha Kia Lihue A’s. Ohana looks to end their first round as they face the East Kauai Legends. The day ends with Hana Hou battling it out with the Hanamaulu Hillsiders.

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