Sabers force overall championship
To compete for the Maui Interscholastic League Division I baseball pennant, a little good fortune is necessary.
Maui High School got some after nearly running out of chances on Saturday against four-time defending MIL champion Baldwin.
The Sabers entered the seventh inning down two runs, but used five walks, three hit batsmen, two errors on the same play, a wild pitch and just one hit to score seven times in the inning against four pitchers for a 7-2 win in the league tournament final on a blazing-hot Saturday afternoon at Maehara Stadium.
Micah Isagawa allowed two hits in six innings for the win, which sets up a game for the MIL crown Wednesday at 6 p.m. at Maehara.
Both teams were already assured of being in the state tournament, set for May 8-11 at Maehara.
“I just had faith in my offense,” said Isagawa, who handed the ball to Mark Karaviotis for the bottom of the seventh after a 45-minute top half of the inning. “From the beginning of the game, I wanted to keep it close. I wanted to keep it at zero, actually, but I just had to hold them down and let my offense work for me.”
In the top of the seventh, Cody Medeiros drew a leadoff walk off starter Noah Apolo, who was then relieved. T.J. Molina also walked before Callen Beeson bunted up the third-base line on a 2-2 count – two throwing errors on the play allowed two runs to score and left Beeson on third. Maui High (11-3) took the lead when Beeson came home on a wild pitch.
“Beeson’s bunt with two strikes, that situation we have to lay it down – that was a crucial situation,” said Sabers coach Chase Corniel.
One out later, Chazz Ishikawa laced a single down the left-field line, and Karaviotis walked. After Jacob Tiu struck out, Jaylen Suda was hit by a pitch to load the bases.
Sammy Sutton and Dustin Kokubun each drew run-scoring walks, Molina was hit by a pitch to make the score 6-2 and Beeson walked to bring in the final run.
“I think that is the first time that has happened to us, but the people who were here saw it,” said Baldwin coach Jon Viela. “We struggled pitching. Noah got us to the seventh with a 2-0 lead and our pitching struggled after that.”
The Bears (12-2) took a 1-0 lead in the second when Makana Victorine scored on a wild pitch. The inning ended when Aaron Victorino popped out to Isagawa with runners on second and third. In the third, the Bears’ Daulton Cabacungan blooped a two-out double to right field that Rossi Abordo dove for and just missed. Apolo struck out, but the ball got by Suda, whose throw to first skipped off Apolo’s helmet and into right field, allowing Cabacungan to scamper home.
Karaviotis and Tiu walked to start the fourth, but an unusual double play thwarted the threat. Suda laid down a bunt that landed just in fair territory and he was tagged out by Victorine, the catcher, who then caught Karaviotis in a rundown between second and third. Apolo got out of the three-walk inning unscathed when Kokubun grounded out.
* Robert Collias is at email@example.com
Micah Isagawa, Karaviotis (7) and Jaylen Suda; Noah Apolo, Akoni Arriaga (7), Anoai Moe-Keahi (7), Micah Richardson (7) and Makana Victorine. WIsagawa. LArriaga. 2BBaldwin: Daulton Cabacungan.