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by Janel Foster, staff writer

With an 8-0 record, the HPU baseball team traveled to the Big Island on Feb. 27 for a six-game series against the University of Hawai‘i-Hilo Vulcans and won four games in three doubleheaders.
On day one, the Sea Warriors won the first game of the doubleheader, 5-2. Junior Chad Wagner was the winning pitcher, and pitched a complete game. HPU fell to the Vulcans in the second game 4-3.
“ We didn’t get the clutch plays we needed to win the game,” said senior pitcher Daniel Cox. Junior Caelan O’Meara took the loss as the starting pitcher.
On Saturday, HPU cleaned up with a sweep of the doubleheader winning the first game, 7-5, with senior pitcher Turhan Folse picking up the win.
In the nightcap, HPU did it again, winning 2-1 in a game that saw little excitement from the plate through the first five innings. The Sea Warriors finally broke out in the sixth inning off of Vulcan reliever Christian Stephenson with two RBIs by junior Bas Nooij (0-2, 1 RBI) and senior Cheynne Hirota (1-3, 1 RBI). Hirota plated two runs to give HPU a 2-1 lead. Cox pitched a complete game giving up only one run and collecting three strikeouts.
In Sunday’s final doubleheader, the Sea Warriors were down in the first game 11-5, but took the nightcap, 8-0. According to several players, they weren’t as focused as they should have been in the first game, but the Sea Warriors bounced back to shut out the Vulcans in the final game.
Sophomore Tobey Inouye pitched the no-hitter, compete game shutout.
“ After this series, we felt that we did a good job, but we could have done better,” Cox said, adding that they are confident about their upcoming nine games over the next two weeks.
Three days after returning from their road trip, the Sea Warriors competed in a series on March 4 and 5, against Concordia-Chicago at Hans L‘Orange Field.
HPU split with Concordia on March 4, losing the first game 3-9, but shut out the Cougars in the nightcap, 12-0.
In the first doubleheader, HPU and CU remained tied at 1 until the sixth inning, when the Cougars batted in three runs. HPU’s Sean Winston went 2-3, with two RBIs. Wagner picked up his first loss of the season, and allowed eight runs on 11 hits, and five strikeouts.
Stinging from that loss, the Sea Warriors routed the Cougars with O’Meara on the mound. O’Meara pitched a complete game allowing just two hits and striking out 12 batters.
The HPU bats were hot in the third inning, as the Sea Warrriors pounded in five runs. HPU’s Kenny Turner and Winston both went 2-3 with two runs and two RBIs apiece.
On March 5, the Sea Warriors swept the Cougars, 17-4 and 7-3, to improve to a 15-3 record.
Once again the third inning was the charm for HPU, with eight runs batted in. Folse earned the first win, while Cox won his third game of the season.
On March 12 HPU began a five-game series against Grand Canyon University.


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