Rainbows' sweep proves costly
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By Stacy Kaneshiro
Advertiser Staff Writer
By Stacy Kaneshiro
Hawai'i got strong pitching in sweeping a baseball doubleheader from Western Illinois, 5-1 and 7-1, yesterday to clinch the five-game non-conference series with two to play.
The Rainbows improved to 16-6, while the Leathernecks fell to 2-12 before 936 at Les Murakami Stadium.
But UH took a hit with a shoulder injury to second baseman Jon Hee. He left the game in the top of the third of the seven-inning second game when he subluxed his left shoulder after diving to his left for a grounder on a single by Ryan Schmidgall.
"When I dove, my arm got caught in the turf and my body kept going and I felt it pop," Hee said. "I couldn't move (my shoulder). When the trainer (Neal Santiago) told me to sit up, it popped back in."
Hee said he will see his doctor tomorrow. He will see how he feels today, but doesn't want to rush back because the Western Athletic Conference season starts next weekend against Louisiana Tech.
"It was shocking," UH closer Darrell Fisherbaugh said of Hee's injury. "He's like the bulldog on the team."
Hee is critical to UH's infield depth because he provides strong defense at second and third base.
"He's a crucial guy," UH coach Mike Trapasso said. "He's one of those guys you realize quickly what he does for you, particularly defensively. We've had plenty of injuries and this is one we'll have to deal with. Guys in his place will have to step up."
Hee saved UH in the opener. Besides driving in two of the five runs, he made an diving catch of Matt Newquist's' liner with runners at second and third and one out with the infield in after Fisherbaugh came in to aid Ian Harrington in the eighth to protect UH's 2-1 lead.
"We needed that for sure," Fisherbaugh said of Hee's catch.
Hee was 1 for 2 in the nightcap before being replaced by Eli Christensen.
Hee is batting .300 and is fourth on the team with 11 RBIs.
HAWAI'I 5, WESTERN ILLINOIS 1
Like Friday's win, the Rainbows relied on strong pitching to hold off the Leathernecks.
Harrington (3-1) allowed a run, six hits and a walk with two strikeouts in a season-high 7 1/3 innings. His previous best performance was a 1-0 loss to UC Irvine, when he allowed a run in seven innings.
"At times, he showed his best fastball command," Trapasso said. "His changeup was his pitch today."
Harrington said his two-seam fastball worked well. "I just tried to work the outside part of the plate and stuck with that today," he said.
Nursing a 2-1 lead, Harrington allowed a one-out single to Schmidgall and double to Mike Triumph to start the eighth. Then Fisherbaugh came in and Hee saved UH with his diving catch. Fisherbaugh struck out the next batter to strand the tying and go-ahead runners in scoring position and retired the side in order in the ninth for his fourth save.
John Paul Shore (0-1) kept the Leathernecks in the game by allowing two runs, five hits and two walks with one strikeout in five-plus innings.
Hawai'i took a 1-0 lead in the fourth on a sacrifice fly to center by Hee. But WIU tied it in the top of the sixth on a RBI double by Newquist.
Hee's run-scoring double in the bottom of the sixth put UH ahead, 2-1.
The Rainbows added three in the eighth on an RBI double by Matt Inouye, RBI groundout by Esteban Lopez and RBI single by Derek DuPree off two WIU relievers.
HAWAI'I 7, WESTERN ILLINOIS 1
Mark Rodrigues (2-1) had his best outing since a 3-1 win against UC Irvine, when he pitched seven scoreless innings. Yesterday, he allowed a run, six hits and three walks in six innings. Freshman Jayson Kramer added a perfect seventh.
"I just kept the ball down and got the strikes when I needed to," Rodrigues said. "Our offense did a good job today, so that kind of helped me out."
The Rainbows scored in every inning, but the sixth, when, ironically, they loaded the bases with no outs and left the runners stranded.
Inouye had three RBIs on a 1-for-1 day, driving in runs with a bases-loaded walk, single and sacrifice fly. He made his season debut at catcher after starting the opener in right field.
"I've been catching bullpens and working on catcher's stuff," Inouye said. "I'm a little rusty when it comes to the game, but I'll get back into it."
Leathernecks starter Bobby Mahon (1-3) was tagged for three runs, six hits and three walks in three innings.
Reach Stacy Kaneshiro at firstname.lastname@example.org.