Cycle by Agag helps Waipahu roll to win
by Kalani Takase
Advertiser Staff Writer
In his first game of the O'ahu Interscholastic Association baseball season last Wednesday, Waipahu junior Ed Agag was more of a spectator than a player.
"We played Kahuku and in one at bat, he looked at three strikes right down the middle," Marauders' coach Milton Takenaka said. "I told him 'If you're not going to use the bat, don't bring it up with you at all,' and he told me that he was just scared, nervous and he just froze."
Agag took his coaches' advice to heart in Saturday's game against McKinley.
The second-year varsity outfielder busted out with a 5-for-6 effort and hit for the cycle.
"I didn't really notice that he had that kind of a day," Takenaka said. "He was hitting the ball really hard that day, I think even the out he made was a well-hit ball. I was really surprised."
Waipahu posted a whopping 20 runs in the second inning and Agag had three of his team's 12 hits in the frame. He belted a three-run homer and had a double and a triple with five RBIs — all in the second inning.
"I had never really seen anything like that inning," said Takenaka, a long-time coach at Waipahu. "McKinley made some errors and gave up some walks, but we hit the ball real well."
Agag, who is 5 feet 6 and 160 pounds, later recorded a pair of singles as the Marauders beat the Tigers, 29-13.
"Basically he's our best hitter right now," Takenaka said of Agag, who bats fifth in the lineup. "He's been hitting well since the end of preseason. He's really improved a lot since last year."
Agag also serves as the team's backup catcher and even fills in around the infield when needed.
"He's kind of like our utility guy," Takenaka said.
Takenaka said he had been working with Agag on refining his batting stance, but that might be put on hold for now.
"We've been trying to change some things with him as far as batting," Takenaka said. "He's been struggling with his stance a little bit, but it's hard to say anything now with him hitting the ball like that."
Agag, who bats and throws right, is also a wide receiver on the Marauders' football team.
"He's a real likeable kid," Takenaka said. "He works hard and he's involved with a lot of other activities like student council."
Takenaka said while the team enjoyed Saturday's win to put it at 2-0 early in the White Conference season, he still sees much room for improvement.
"I wasn't too happy with the way we played. We gave up 13 runs and our pitchers gave up at least 10 walks," said Takenaka, who led Waipahu to the OIA White title the past two seasons. "They were kind of good with the win, but they knew I wasn't too happy with it, so it wasn't a big party atmosphere."
OIA RED WEST
Pearl City 5, Kapolei 1: Kahana Neal pitched a five-hitter and the host Chargers scored four in the fifth to beat the Hurricanes. Cody Kamei pitched a two-hitter for Kapolei, which committed five errors.
KAPOLEI (1-3) 000 100 0—1 5 5
PEARL CITY (2-0) 100 040 X—5 2 0
Cody Kamei and Brandon Damas. Kahana Neal and Isaac Shim. W — Neal. L — Kamei.
Leading hitters — Kapolei: Kamai 2-3; Damas double. Pearl City: Chevas Numata double.
Reported by Gary Nakamoto
Waipahu 11, Waiaiua 1: Drake Yoshioka pitched a five-hitter with one walk and seven strikeouts as the host Marauders beat the Bulldogs. Waipahu's Aldrin Padilla batted 2 for 3 with three RBIs.
WAIALUA (1-2) 000 01— 1 5 0
WAIPAHU (3-0) 410 6X—11 11 1
Kekai Rivera-Albeso and Kaimana Tayaba-Hatchie. Drake Yoshioka and Aldrin Padilla. W — Yoshioka. L — Rivera-Albeso.
Leading hitters — Waialua: Chris Gervacio triple. Waipahu: Jarrin Abreu 2-3, double, triple, 2 RBIs; Cheyne Estanique 2-3, double; Padilla 2-3, 3 RBIs; Jonathan Casamina 2-2, double; Kyle Sugawa 2 RBIs.
Reported by Milton Takenaka