Now its time for the leaders to rise.
Thats how senior third baseman Patrick Scalabrini felt after previously winless Louisville dealt Hawaii its third consecutive loss, 5-0, in collegiate baseball last night.
Mike Eilers and Josh Ring combined for the first shutout against Hawaii (3-4) since April 24 in a 4-0 loss at Rice. It happened before a Rainbow Stadium crowd of 1,010.
"I think we need to have a talk tomorrow before the game, shake things up a little bit," said Scalabrini, one of four team captains.
Eilers (1-1), a 6-foot-5, 195-pound righthander, scattered four hits and two walks over 7° innings. Ring allowed a hit and a walk in the final 1· innings for his first save. They provided a boost for a team that arrived here 0-4. But three of those losses were to nationally ranked teams (twice to No. 2 USC and once to No. 18 Pepperdine).
"Were 0-4 but we played some pretty good folks," Louisville coach Lelo Prado said. "But these guys (the Rainbows) are pretty good. We came out and played with a lot of intensity and we executed. Thats what weve been preaching the first four games that we didnt do and we did it today and we win."
The Rainbows felt they should have hit against Eilers, but had no reason for not solving him.
"Theres nothing really special about him," UH shortstop Cortland Wilson said. "Luck just didnt go our way."
That was indicative when the Cardinals (1-4) took a 1-0 lead in the sixth. Hawaii starter Jeff Coleman (0-1) started the inning by hitting Dave Williams. Hook then executed a perfect hit-and-run ground single to right, moving Williams to third.
After Hook stole second with Williams holding third, the Rainbows infield played back. Mike Budak then hit a grounder to Wilson. With the infield back, it is usually automatic for the runner on third to move on contact. But Williams hesitated before breaking toward home. That confused Wilson, who ended up holding the ball, giving Budak an infield RBI single.
"If he would have broke earlier, like he should have, I would have just made one (throw to first base) all the way," said Wilson. "So if I could replay it, I would have played at three (go for the runner on third)."
Prado said Williams should have been running on contact.
"Were lucky because the shortstop didnt throw to first," Prado said. "But still, they did a great job and got out of that inning."
The Rainbows left six runners on base, four in scoring position. They grounded into two double plays and had a runner thrown out at home for another twin killing.
Hawaiis closest chance to score came in the third. Derek Honma led off with a walk and stole second with Matthew Purtell batting. After Purtell struck out, Honma stole third with Scalabrini at the plate. Scalabrini then flied out to center fielder Mike Hook, who threw a strike to catcher Fernando Isa to nail Honma at home for an inning-ending double play.
On the play, Honma slid head first, jarring his right shoulder into Isas leg, which was blocking the plate. Honma said he thought his left hand had touched the plate before the tag. Honma could not return to center field in the fourth and left for Arthur Guillen. Honma had his shoulder in a sling after the game and said he hoped he could play today.
The Cardinals broke the game open with a three-run seventh. With one out, Matt Jarboe and Adam Haley hit consecutive doubles for one run, chasing Coleman after 6° innings. Chris Quiroz, however, didnt fare any better. He allowed a triple to Williams and one out later an RBI double to Budak.
The inning might have been longer when Carlos De la Osa grounded a single to right to drive in Budak. But the Rainbows won their appeal that Budak missed third base, disallowing the run.
The Cardinals got another run in the ninth on a balk by Wakon Childers, who made his first appearance since 1999. He missed all of last season after elbow surgery.
The series continues at 1:05 p.m. today. The probable starting pitchers are Sean Yamashita for UH and Garrett Estabrook for Louisville.