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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, June 7, 2006

UH's Wright toughed it out

 •  Indians select UH's Wright in 2nd round

By Stacy Kaneshiro
Advertiser Staff Writer

Hawai'i pitcher Steven Wright, who missed a start at the NCAA Corvallis (Ore.) Regional over the weekend because of mononucleosis, had been feeling ill weeks earlier.

Wright said he left the team Saturday morning with UH coach Mike Trapasso's permission to go home to Moreno Valley, Calif.

"I'm feeling tired, still have a sore throat," Wright said in a telephone interview yesterday. "The best decision I made was to go home and get some rest in a more comfortable atmosphere."

Wright said his throat started to get sore during the San Jose State series May 19 to 21 in San Jose. He allowed an unearned run, three hits and two walks in seven innings of an 11-1 win to notch his 10th victory of the season May 19.

He said he also felt ill in the Western Athletic Conference tournament opener May 25 an 8-0 win against Louisiana Tech. He pitched four-hit ball over eight innings, tying a career-high with 13 strikeouts, while walking none.

"A couple days after that, that's when it started to get real bad," Wright said. "Once it got bad, I couldn't handle it and had to go to the doctors. When the doctors told me what I had, they told me I basically couldn't pitch. What happens with mono is that it affects your organs, so I wasn't going to risk my life for a game."

He said team trainer Neil Santiago cared for him before his parents arrived.

"He was the one that took me to the doctors and told me what I had to do to try to get over the symptoms," Wright said. "I was practically helpless. I was bed-ridden for a couple days."

Wright said he will see a doctor this week and get another blood sample.

Although disappointed he missed the regional, Wright said he was proud of how the team battled back from the losers' bracket to reach the championship.

"It showed we're not a one-man team," he said. "We did it with everybody, from 1 to 25. We showed we're a solid team."

Reach Stacy Kaneshiro at skaneshiro@honoluluadvertiser.com.