LIHUE — The Red Raider won at home to break a four-game losing streak.
Kauai High School’s varsity baseball team defeated Kapaa High School, 4-1, Wednesday night at Vidinha Stadium.
The last time Kauai won a game was on March 20 in a 12-2 win over Waimea High School.
“It feels pretty good. I haven’t lost that much in my life, you know what I mean?” said Kauai head coach Hank Ibia. “That was pretty hard, but it’s part of the game. They do well. Kapaa and Waimea do well. So, give the credit to them, too. But they played good. Sometimes, what you got to do is take some of that and just keep on fighting.”
Kauai (2-5-1 KIF, 1-2 2nd round) scored a go-ahead run in the bottom of the fifth inning when infielder Nainoa Kane-Yates hit a sacrifice fly to center field. Red Raiders outfielder Lanakila Lovell-Obatake crossed home plate from third base on Kane-Yates’ sac fly.
“We call them productive outs. You don’t have to hit. You get a fly ball, tag up and score the run. He did his part,” Ibia said of the go-ahead play. “That’s what we needed. We need to do the small things. We never sacrificed the ball well tonight, so that’s got to come into play next week. We need to start riding this thing.”
The Red Raiders scored two more runs in the bottom of the sixth inning. Infielder Wailele Kane-Yates hit an RBI single to left field. Later on in the inning, courtesy runner Avery Casticimo scored on an error.
“Tonight, we threw strikes again. One of our biggest problems was not throwing strikes. We threw strikes today,” Ibia said. “We had a couple of hits at the right time and a couple of breaks here and there. That’s what you need in a game. Overall, we played together. Our guys in the dugout and on the field, they all played together.”
Kapaa (4-2-1 KIF, 0-1 2nd round) got its one run in the fourth inning on an RBI single to center field by infielder Isaac Nagahisa.
“That Domingsel boy (Kauai starting pitcher Jaden Domingsel), he’s a good pitcher. He mixes his pitches well. So, we got to give him that,” said Kapaa head coach Bryan Aiwohi. “I thought we had our chances. I think we made some plays that they didn’t give us, but it is what it is.”
In the bottom of the sixth inning, Kapaa questioned a couple of calls.
One of which was Aiwohi believed there should have been a runner’s inference called at second base. On the other, the Warriors coach believed a tag was made at third base for an out, but the Kauai runner was called safe.
“I thought we had that guy at second. Our guy was standing on the bag with the ball, then he cleaned him out,” Aiwohi said. “Then, we backdoored that guy at third. Everybody here saw it. Two umpires couldn’t make the call. They looked at each other, and we were watching like, ‘I can’t believe you’re not calling him out.’ They just called him safe. Nothing we can do. We just got to move on.”
After Nagahisa’s RBI single in the top of the fourth, Kauai leveled the score at 1-1 in the bottom half of the inning on an RBI double to center field by Wailele Kane-Yates.
In the top of the sixth inning, Kapaa had three runners on base with two outs. Nagahisa grounded to shortstop to end the inning and leave the bases loaded.
Kauai got four runs on eight hits, left seven runners on base and recorded one error in the first inning. Wailele Kane-Yates was 2 for 3 batting with a double, two RBIs and once grounded into a double play.
Domingsel got the win for Kauai. He threw a complete game, struck out three and hit two batters.
Kapaa got one run on four hits, left seven runners on base and recorded three errors. Warriors infielder Caden Shimabukuro was 3 for 3 batting.
Warriors starter Ka‘eo Kamau took the loss. He went all six innings and recorded three strikeouts and one hit-by-pitch.
Kapaa will host Waimea (4-3 KIF, 2-0 2nd round) for a doubleheader Saturday at the Ron Martin Field at Kapaa High School. The first game is scheduled for 10:30 a.m.
Kauai will next play against Waimea at 6 p.m Wednesday at Vidinha Stadium.
Nick Celario, sports writer, can be reached at 245-0437 or firstname.lastname@example.org.