Fresno Pacific University took advantage of a costly error and plated three runs in the bottom of the eighth inning to beat the University of Hawaii at Hilo 4-2 on Sunday.
The Pacific West Conference baseball game was played in Fresno, Calif. and ended the teams’ four-game series.
The host Sunbirds improved to 9-8 overall and 4-4 in the PacWest. The Vulcans dropped to 2-6 and 1-3, respectively.
“Seamus (Yoneshige) pitched a heck of a game for us today,” first-year UHH head coach Kallen Miyataki said. “But we had a crucial error in the eighth inning and we just couldn’t come up with the timely hits to help Seamus.”
Yoneshige, a senior southpaw out of Castle High School on Oahu, carried a 2-1 lead heading into the eighth inning. But after a FPU batter reached on a hit, the hosts manufactured a mini rally in the inning with a costly error on a ground ball that opened the door for three runs.
Sunbirds reliever Josh Medeles (3-1) then shut out the Vulcans in the ninth inning to secure the win, the host’s third in four games against the visitors.
“We had some opportunities that we didn’t take advantage of,” Miyataki said. “Seamus did his part, but we didn’t come up with the clutch hits and our defense cost us.
“On this road trip, our pitching and defense has held up most of the way. We just have to start scoring some runs.”
Medeles (3-1) recorded the win, taking over for starter Eian Raeber (4 1/3 innings, 1 hit, 2 runs). Medeles hurled 4 2/3 innings, striking out one and walking one.
Yoneshige (0-2) started and pitched 7 2/3 innings before reliever Michael Slifer got the final out in the eighth. Yoneshige took the loss, allowing nine hits and four runs — two earned — to go along with seven strikeouts and two walks.
Baron Bower had three hits and scored twice to lead FPU. Teammate Kaohu Gaspar added two hits.
Kyle Watase was the only Vulcan to pair hits. He went 2 for 3 with a walk. Designated hitter Jonathan James had UHH’s lone RBI.
The Vulcans next host Point Loma Nazarene on March 10-11 in Hilo.
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