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Mililani routs Campbell, 11-1, to take sole possession of first

By Wes Nakama

Flipping the script in prime time TV, Mililani routed defending state champion Campbell, 11-1, Thursday night at McKinley to take over sole possession of first place in the OIA Western Division.

Freshman pitcher Hinano Bautista pitched a four-hitter and hit a solo home run in the top of the fifth inning to help invoke the 10-run rule that ended the game in the bottom half when she closed out the victory. The Trojans improved to 10-1, while the Sabers fell to 8-2.

The game, which was televised live statewide on Spectrum OC16, was a reverse of Campbell’s 11-9 victory in the teams’ first meeting on March 16, which also was on prime time TV. In that first meeting, the Sabers jumped out to an 11-2 lead in the top of the third.

Thursday night, Mililani struck first when Taryn Hirano led off the game with a home run over the fence in right-center, and then the Trojans extended the lead to 4-0 in the third on Kolbi Kochi’s RBI single and Makayla Pagampao’s two-run homer to center.

“I think (the quick lead) really set the tone,” Mililani coach Rose Antonio said. 

The Trojans then exploded for six runs in the fourth, after Hirano’s RBI single down the left field line, Ui Garcia’s three-run homer over the center field fence and then Jerel Oriano Mailo’s two-run homer to center.

Campbell scored on a bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the fourth to make it 10-1, but then Bautista’s solo home run to center with one out in the top of the fifth made it 11-1.

The Sabers got their leadoff batter aboard with a single to right in the bottom of the fifth, but she was doubled-up after a pop-up to the to catcher one batter later, and then Bautista got a pop-up to first to end the game.      

It was quite the impressive first TV start for Bautista, a right-hander.

“In the beginning I was kind of nervous starting,” Bautista said. “But I started getting comfortable after. It was actually really good, it was fun. My plan was just to pitch strikes, let my defense work and have confidence in them and myself.”

Mililani Freshman Pitcher Hinano Bautista

Antonio said Bautista earned the start and made the most of it.

“She’s really good, her energy is really positive,” Antonio said. “All of our pitchers have been working hard in the (bullpen), and she got the opportunity. We’re trying different things, we have to. They all support each other, and that’s what you want. As long as we are positive, we’ll be fine.”

Bautista said the Campbell defeat last month actually was a launching point toward the team’s improvement.

“After that first loss of the season, we came back and worked hard at practice every day,” Bautista said. “And all the other games we had before this, we started improving a lot in our sticks and our defense. And it worked today.”

Kamryn Aoki went 3 for 4 with two runs scored, Hirano finished 2 for 4 with the home run, two RBI and two runs scored, Oriana Mailo went 2 for 3 with the homer and two RBIs, Bautista went 2 for 2 with the home run, Garcia went 1 for 3 with the three-run homer and Pagampao went 1 for 3 with the two-run homer.

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