UH baseball team falls to Sacramento State, 11-6
Andrew Ayers drove in four runs and Sacramento State rallied past Hawai'i, 11-6, today in the opener of a four-game Western Athletic Conference series at Hornet Field in Sacramento, Calif.
The Hornets used four-run innings in the sixth and seventh to turn back the Rainbows, who took a 5-3 entering the bottom of the sixth.
Reliever Mike Guglielmo (1-2) was the beneficiary of the four-run sixth, pitching a scoreless inning of relief for starter Robert Butler, who allowed five runs in five-plus innings for the Hornets (12-17-1 overall, 1-0 WAC).
Alex Capaul (5-2) gave up all of the runs in the two four-run innings in relief of starter Josh Slaats allowed three runs (two earned), seven hits and three walks with seven strikeouts in five innings.
Christian Johnson hit two solo home runs, while Sacramento native David Freitas hit a three-run homer for the Rainbows (17-16, 1-4).
Ayers, who was 3 for 4, had two-run triple in the four-run sixth and two-run homer in the four-run seventh. Blake Miller was 3 for 4 with three RBI for the Hornets.
The Hornets took a 1-0 lead in the third. Ayers was hit by a pitch with one out, went to second when Kirby Young grounded out to second and scored on Trevor Paine's double to left.
Sacramento State increased its lead in th fourth. Trevor Bloom reached on shortstop Greg Garcia's fielding error and an out later, went to third when Justin Lamb grounded out to third. Blake Miller's single to right scored Bloom to make it 2-0.
The Rainbows took the lead in the top of the fourth. Kevin Macdonald led off with a single, but Pi'ikea Kitamura was called out on interference for impeding the catcher's throw to second on Macdonald's steal attempt. Macdonald was sent back to first, but ended up back at second later on a wild pitch and went to third when Matt Roquemore grounded out to second and scored on Garcia's single. Garcia went to second on Kolten Wong's single. David Freitas' three-run home run to right-center to put UH ahead, 4-2.
The Hornets got one of the runs back in the bottom of the fourth. Josh Powers, Ayers and Young singled in succession to load the bases. After striking out the next two hitters, Slaats walked Bloom to force in a run. But Slaats struck out Justin Messaneras to keep damage to a minimum.
Johnson led off the sixth with a homer to right to cushion UH's lead to 5-3 and chase Butler for Mike Guglielmo, who retired the next three batters in order.
Capaul started the sixth for Slaats and was victimized by two errors in a four-run inning. Lamb reached on Kitamura's throwing error and went to second on Miller's bunt single to third. Powers reached first on a fielder's choice grounder to first baseman Macdonald, whose throwing error to short allowed a run to score and the other to take third. Ayers' triple to right put the Hornets ahead, 6-5. Young singled to left to score Ayers, but was throw out at second trying for a double.
The Hornets followed with another four-run inning against Capaul. Bloom led off with a single and Mezzaneras walked. A wild pitch moved the runners up, but Lamb struck out. Miller followed with a two-run single and went to second on the throw home. After Powers grounded out to short, Ayers homered to left-center to make it 11-5.
Johnson hit his second homer of the game with two out in the eighth against James Chamberlain to pull UH to 11-6.
The series resumes with a doubleheader tomorrow starting at 8:30 a.m., HST. ESPN 1420 AM will air Sacramento State's radio feed.