Rainbows silenced by 1-hitter
By Stacy Kaneshiro
Advertiser Staff Writer
Sophomore right-hander Michael Malott was, as he put it, "effectively wild," to one-hit the Rainbows in his complete-game victory to help the Spartans (23-9 overall) to take a commanding 4-0 lead in the Rainbow Easter Tournament at Les Murakami Stadium.
Malott walked six, but a well-positioned defense aided him. The Spartans were seemingly always in position for most balls batted into play.
"We've been playing them well the whole series," said Malott, who had eight strikeouts. "It's just nice to have your players in the right spots."
It was the first shutout against UH this season.
Meanwhile, the Rainbows (9-20, 1-2) continued to struggle in all phases of the game.
Freshman right-hander Jason Piepmeier (0-3) lasted three-plus innings, allowing four runs.
Reliever Matt Le Ducq, so effective against Birmingham-Southern on Tuesday, was tagged for three runs without getting an out. J.P. Gauthier and Chad Giannetti could not escape the Spartans' offensive wrath, as they gave up two and three runs, respectively.
Rainbow pitching hit five SJSU batters, threw three wild pitches and walked eight. Catcher Grady Symonds was charged with two pass balls. Left fielder Derek Honma and Piepmeier committed errors.
Magnifying the Rainbows' problems was their only hit a leadoff triple by Symonds in the third. Julian Russell struck out on four pitches and Arthur Guillen's bunt was too hard back to Malott, forcing Symonds to retreat to third. After Brent Cook walked, Lane Nogawa struck out to end the threat.
"You can't blame the coaches; they're doing everything they can," UH co-captain Cook said. "We're just not getting it done. We're trying everything right now. Things just aren't working out."
UH coach Mike Trapasso said the Spartans are just a better club. "We have no answer for them," he said.
After a two-run third, the Spartans blew the game apart when they sent 10 batters to the plate in a five-run fourth. They added two in the seventh and three in the eighth.
Dino Quintero led the Spartans' 15-hit assault by batting 4-for-4 with three runs and two RBIs. Gabe Lopez was 3-for-3 with two runs and two RBIs. Travis Becktel and Nathan Corrick added to hits apiece. Corrick hit a solo home run in the eighth.
"Something's got to change," Cook said. "The next two games are really important for us, especially against the two Hawai'i teams (HPU and UH-Hilo) we need to beat."
The Spartans, who took two-of-three Western Athletic Conference games from the Rainbows over the weekend, have now won six in a row.
The Rainbows will play Division II Hawai'i Pacific at 6:35 tonight. Either Chris George or Ricky Bauer will start, Trapasso said. It depends on how George feels today. He pitched last Friday in UH's only win against the Spartans.
Meanwhile, designated hitter Scooter Martines (.316, 15 RBI) will available the earliest Saturday. He has a bruised shoulder.
A turnstile count of 1,334 watched three games yesterday.
UC Riverside 5, Hawai'i-Hilo 1: Freshman right-hander A.J. Shappi scattered eight hits to lead the Highlanders (17-11, 2-1).
Shappi (3-1) walked two and struck out one, while allowing one run in his complete-game effort.
Jimmy Anderson and Jason Collette had two hits apiece for UC Riverside.
Joel Zimmerman (1-2) allowed four runs, three earned, in seven innings for the Vulcans (9-28-1, 1-3).
Kaliko Oligo and Keola Park had two hits each for the Vulcans.
UC Riverside 200 000 1205 9 1
Hawai'i hilo 000 010 0001 8 2
AJ Shappi and Jimmy Anderson. Joel Zimmerman, James Onaga III (8) and Nalei Sooto, Bryce Watanabe. WPShappi. LPZimmerman.
Leading hitters: UCRAnderson 2-5; Jason Collette 2-5; Tony Festa triple. UHHKaliko Oligo 2-4; Keola Park 2-4, double; Daniel Lockett double.
Birmingham Southern 6, Hawai'i Pacific 5: Mac Godwin's bases-loaded force out at second scored the winning run in the bottom of the 15th inning for the Panthers (15-12, 2-1).
David Driskill led off by reaching first on an error by third baseman Jonathan Torres and advanced to third when Michael Cline reached first safely on a sacrifice and error by catcher Shea Hirota. Adam Pease was intentionally walked before Godwin's force play.
Godwin's two-run home run off Brandon Kahale in the bottom of the ninth tied the game at 4 to force extra innings. Each team scored a run in the 10th before the Panthers ended it in the 15th.
Tyler Sullivan (2-0) pitched 5¡ scoreless innings of relief for the Panthers. Kai Austin (2-4) allowed the unearned run after 4á innings.
The Sea Warriors dropped to 17-20 and 0-4 in the tournament.
HPU 000 110 020 100 0005 11 2
BIRMNGHM. SO. 001 000 102 100 0016 18 2
Blane Muraoka, Neil Sullivan (8), Brandon Kahale (8), T.C. Everett (10), Kai Austin (11) and Shay Hirota. Chad Durden, Scott Johnson (6), Christopher Brennan (6), Steve White (10), Tyler Sullivan (10) and Adam Tucker, Jon Prince. WPSullivan. LPAustin.
Leading hitters: HPUEverett 3-8, double; Andrew Stith 2-3; Jonathan Torres double. BSMichael Cline 3-7, 2 doubles; Mac Godwin 3-7, home run; Connor Robertson 2-6; Matt Bogue 2-6, double.