Honokaa softball coach Wesley Fujimoto knows his team has the potential to do great things, but the Dragons’ inconsistency has at times given him fits.
“Most of the time when they have a big lead, they slack off and let the other team catch up,” Fujimoto said.
Honokaa also raced off to a big lead against Keaau on Friday at Honokaa Park, and this time the Dragons kept their foot on the gas pedal.
Shereena Bird hit a first-inning grand slam and finished with six RBIs, and Kaitlin Agustin and Chasity Nickel added four RBIs apiece as Honokaa pounded out 16 hits to beat Keaau 23-7 in a Big Island Interscholastic Federation softball game.
The contest ended after four and a half innings because of the league’s 10-run mercy rule.
“Finally, the bats came alive, and defensively, we played good,” Fujimoto said. “Today, the hitting was exceptionally good.”
After Bird’s grand slam highlighted a seven-run first inning, Nickel hit a bases-clearing double in the second, and Agustin sparked a 10-run third with a two-run single.
Bird, who went 2 for 2, and Allie Shiraki both had triples in the contest for the Dragons (3-2 Division II, 6-2 overall).
Agustin finished 3 for 4, Kayla Requelman and Shiraki each went 2 for 3, and Nickel was 2 for 4.
It was plenty of offense for junior Kayla Kalauli, who pitched the first three innings to get the win. She gave up three runs on three hits, walking seven and striking out none.
The Cougars’ Lohi Kamakea-Wong started in the circle and took the loss. In 3 1/3 innings, she allowed 16 runs on 10 hits, striking out two and walking six.
Kamakea-Wong also led Keaau (3-1, 6-3) at the plate, going 2 for 3 with an RBI.
After suffering a season-opening loss to Kamehameha on March 2, Honokaa has won six of its past seven games.
Fujimoto said a 13-12 win over perennial power Waiakea last Saturday may have given his team a confidence boost.
“I hope it doesn’t get to their head because we still have a lot of games to go,” he said.
Keaau 120 40 — 7 5 3
Honokaa 74(10) 2x — 23 16 2
They committed their fair share of errors in the field and had trouble stringing together hits at the plate.
Fantacie Keahilihau-Kuamoo wiped away the Hilo Vikings’ struggles with one swing of the bat Friday in Kealakekua.
Keahilihau-Kuamoo ripped a solo homer over the left-center field fence in the eighth inning, lifting Hilo to a 5-4 win over Konawaena.
“We had a rough start in the beginning, and we had trouble piecing together hits,” Vikings coach Leo Sing-C how said. “But they had hits at the right time.
“We had some crucial errors. They did pull it together, and they got it done when they needed to.”
Keahilihau-Kuamoo, a senior, also doubled in the contest and finished 3-for-5. Her home run made a winner out of junior Aliesa Kaneshiro, w ho struck out 11 and walked two in a complete-game tw o-hitter.
She had a no-hitter through 6 1/3 innings before the Wildcats’ Bethany Batangan broke it up with a clean single.
Batangan also singled in the eighth for Konawaena’s other hit.
The Vikings (5-0 BIIF, 9-0 overall) took a 4-3 lead in the top of the sixth, when Shalyn Guthier laid down a bunt that scored Shyanne Higa-Gonsalves.
In the bottom of the inning, Konawaena (2-3, 4-4) tied it when a throwing error allowed Batangan to race home.
Hilo collected 14 hits, with Jordyn Breitbarth going 3-for-4 with a double and Guthier collecting two hits.
The Wildcats’ Shyla Victor also went the distance, striking out none and walking three.
“We played well today,” Konawaena coach Shellie Grace said. “Both teams played really well today.”
Hilo 012 001 01 — 5 14 4
Konawaena 200 011 00 — 4 2 4
Kealakehe 11, Pahoa 3: Freshman Kiersen Kahele hit for the cycle, going 4-for-4 with three RBIs as the Waveriders snapped a four-game winning streak with a home win.
Kahele launched a shot over the left fielder’s head in the first inning for an inside-the-park home run. Then she singled in the third, clubbed an RBI triple in the fourth and hit a run-scoring double in the fifth.
Junior Nani Anakalea-Haleamau added two hits and two RBIs for Kealakehe (2-3, 4-4).
Sophomore Lina Palmer-Kahananui pitched a complete-game two-hitter to get the win. She didn’t allow an earned run, striking out five, walking four and hitting two.
Sophomore Mackenzie Singleton also went the distance and took the loss for the Daggers (1-5, 2-8). She allowed 11 runs on nine hits. She walked five, struck out two and hit two.
Senior Christine Diza led off the first with single, and Macey Mokuhalii stroked a one-out double in the sixth for Pahoa’s two hits. The Daggers stranded the bases loaded in the second and fifth innings.
Pahoa 200 010 0 — 3 2 3
Kealakehe 113 240 x — 11 9 7
Waiakea 8, Kohala 6: Ariana Mareko smacked a three-run homer and finished with four RBIs as the host Warriors held off the Cowgirls.
Waiakea (4-1 Division I, 6-3) overcame a three-run homer by Kohala’s Tomiko Coito and Kyrah Sol’s solo shot.
Alexis Anzai struck out seven over five innings to get the victory, allowing nine walks, six runs and five hits. Brandi Maximo allowed a hit in two scoreless innings with two strikeouts to nail down the save.
At the plate, Anzai was 2 for 2 with a triple and a run-scoring single. In addition to her home run to left field, Mareko also legged out an RBI triple.
Tiani Luga was 2 for 2 with an RBI for the Cowgirls (1-4 Division II, 2-6) and Sol was 2 for 4.
Losing pitcher Ashlyn Van Zandt went the distance, walking four and striking out four.
Kohala 003 030 0 — 6 6 0
Waiakea 313 001 x — 8 6 1
Hilo 5-0 9-0
Waiakea 4-1 6-3
Keaau 3-1 6-3
Kealakehe 2-3 4-4
Kamehameha 4-0 7-1
Honokaa 3-2 6-2
Konawaena 2-3 4-4
Kohala 1-4 2-6
Pahoa 1-4 2-8
Ka’u 0-3 0-7
Hawaii Prep 0-4 0-8
Honokaa 22, Pahoa 3
Waiakea 8, Kohala 6
Hilo 5, Konawaena 4, OT
Honokaa 23, Keaau 7
Kealakehe 11, Pahoa 3
Hawaii Prep at Ka’u, 1 p.m.