Tyler Nordgren had three hits and Matt Jervis drove in three runs to lead Point Loma Nazarene to an 8-4 win over the University of Hawaii at Hilo on Wednesday.
The Pacific West Conference baseball game was played Wednesday morning at Wong Stadium to end a four-game series. The host Vulcans (5-7 overall, 4-4 PacWest) won three of the four games.
“Any time you win three games is good and if you win the series, that’s awesome, too,” UHH head coach Kallen Miyataki said. “Today, we had opportunities early and we couldn’t take advantage of them. Give Point Loma credit. But the good thing for us is that we’re moving in the right direction.”
On Wednesday, the Sea Lions (12-9, 5-3) took control midway through the nine-inning contest, building a 7-0 lead before UHH erupted for four runs in the bottom of the inning. The visitors then plated a run in the top of the ninth to close scoring.
“I’m proud of our guys,” Miyataki said. “We got down 7-0, but we came back. We never quit and scored four runs in the eighth. That showed a lot of heart.”
Nordgren, a third baseman, went 3-for-5 with a run batted in and scored three times to spark Point Loma’s 14-hit attack off five Vulcan pitchers.
Jervis, a second baseman, had two hits, and had the game-high three RBIs while Tyler Hanzawa had two hits and two RBIs. Teammates Clinton Harwick and Mike Marcoux each added two hits.
Kyle Watase and Harrison Guiol each had three hits to lead UHH’s 11-hit attack. Austin Cusack had two hits while sophomore Keenan Nishioka had a hit and two RBIs.
Sea Lion starter Garrett Levsen (3-1) pitched seven innings and earned the win. He allowed eight hits and no runs while striking out two and not walking a batter.
UHH starter Jordyn Ah Chong (0-2) took the loss. He hurled 5 1/3 innings, giving up seven hits and four runs.
“As a coach, we can look back and second-guess ourselves on what we’re doing,” Miyataki said. “But we’ve put in a new system and have progressed a lot as a team since the season began. I think the players are starting to believe in the system and saw in this series, if we do the right things, we can be very competitive.
“We see all of this as teaching life skills, not just playing baseball. We try to take those teachable moments that come up and build on. We feel pretty good that we’re moving in the right direction, but we’ve still got a long way to go to play to our potential.”
The Vulcans next host Cal Baptist in PacWest doubleheaders at 4 p.m. Friday and Saturday at Wong Stadium.
“Cal Baptist is ranked, and they’re probably the strongest team in our division,” Miyataki said. “We’re going to have to play well against them, but hopefully we can be very competitive during the four-game series.”
At Wong Stadium
PLN 000 203 201 — 8 14 0
UHH 000 000 040 — 4 11 3