Lewis-Clark tips Hawai'i, 3-2, in 10
By Stacy Kaneshiro
Advertiser Staff Writer
Marc Kaiser pitched 10 innings with 10 strikeouts to lift the Warriors over the Rainbows, 3-2, on the second day of the Rainbow Easter Baseball Tournament.
A two-out dropped fly ball by left fielder Brent Cook in the top of the 10th inning allowed the go-ahead run for the Warriors (22-4), who improved to 2-0 in the tournament. With runners at first and second, Nick Browne, who had a two-run double in the seventh, lofted a ball to left that UH coach Mike Trapasso said Cook lost in the lights. The ball landed in Cook's glove, but slipped out. Earlier in the game, Cook saved a run by throwing out a runner at the plate.
The Rainbows (15-13), who fell to 1-1 in the tournament before 1,398 at Les Murakami Stadium, scratched for their runs against Kaiser, a transfer from Arizona who was a fourth-round pick by Cincinnati out of high school in the 2000 draft. Kaiser (5-1) used a relatively low 112 pitches, while scattering four hits and a walk. He said all of his pitches were working well, especially his slider, which broke late against UH batters.
"This is the best guy we've seen all year," Trapasso said.
But the Rainbows had the best of Kaiser until the seventh. They took a 1-0 lead in the third, making the most from one hit. With one out, Tim Montgomery singled and beat a force at second on a hit-and-run grounder by Isaac Omura, who reached first safely on the play. After a wild pitch advanced the runners to third and second, Brian Finegan grounded out to second to score Montgomery.
Meanwhile, UH starter Nick Ponomarenko held the Warriors scoreless until the seventh. Jose Rodriguez and Justin Fuller hit back-to-back singles before Browne doubled them home to give L-C State a 2-1 lead. Tyler Best followed with a single but Cook threw out Browne at home, as Best advanced to second on the throw. Rich Olsen came in and restored order with two scoreless innings and gave UH a chance to tie the score in the bottom of the eighth.
Tyler Wightman led off with a single to center and was lifted for pinch runner Matt Inouye, who advanced to second on Montgomery's sacrifice and took third when Omura grounded out to second. Finegan grounded a single to center to score Inouye with the tying run.
Olsen got one out in the ninth before allowing a walk and single, but closer Clary Carlsen came in to face Brendan Ryan and got an inning-ending double play.
Kaiser retired the Rainbows in order in the bottom of the ninth to set up the Warriors in the 10th.
Carlsen (1-3) got the first two batters on grounders before Rodriguez singled on a flare to right and took second when Justin Fuller reached when he singled off first baseman Andrew Sansaver's glove. On a 1-2 pitch, Browne hit the ball to left that Cook couldn't catch as the go-ahead run scored.
But it was Kaiser who kept the Warriors in the game. The only times UH scored were when it managed more than one base runner in an inning. Kaiser was backed by two double plays, including one he started in the bottom of the 10th. After Josh Green led off with a single, Kaiser fielded Brian Bock's bunt and recycled it into a double play. His 10th strikeout came against Inouye to end the game.
"I had my defense behind me, that was the key," Kaiser said. "I was able to throw my first pitch for a strike and have them grounding out to some people. It was a good team win."
Kaiser said he transferred from Division I Arizona to NAIA Lewis-Clark State because "school wasn't going too good and the team didn't really fit me well either.
"But I'm happy where I am now. I couldn't be at a better place."
The Rainbows will play Air Force at 6:35 tonight in the final day of round robin play. Chris George will start for the Rainbows.
AIR FORCE 4, WESTERN ILLINOIS 2: Jesper Stubbendorff (3-3) allowed two runs on eight hits and four walks in pitching a complete game to lead the Falcons (9-16 overall, 1-1 in the tournament).
Mike Rose's sacrifice fly in the fifth broke a 1-1 tie and Adam Howes stole home for another run in Air Force's two-run fifth.
The Leathernecks closed to 3-2 in the seventh on Ryan Cougill's RBI single, but Air Force got a sacrifice fly from Daniel Petro in the bottom of the eighth for insurance.
Nathan Miller (3-2) also pitched a complete game, allowing four runs (one unearned) on six hits and two walks in eight innings for Western Illinois (9-12), which dropped to 0-2 in the tournament.