Trojans open with win over Spartans
LAHAINA – Nick Asuncion was ready to play.
After the start of the St. Anthony High School baseball team’s season was delayed a week – a trainer was not available for the opening series and Friday’s game was rained out – the senior right-hander struck out 10 batters over four hitless innings in an 8-5 win over Seabury Hall on Saturday at the Lahaina Recreation Center field.
Asuncion twice fanned five batters in a row in the Maui Interscholastic League opener for both teams.
“My fastball was just going accurate – in and out – and trying to keep them thinking inside and out,” said Asuncion, who was also 2-for-4 with three RBIs.
Asuncion gave up one unearned run before giving way to Travis Delima to start the fifth with a 6-1 lead.
“I actually didn’t know I was going to come out,” said the 6-foot-2, 245-pound Asuncion, who threw 80 pitches. “I just walked right out of the dugout and they said, ‘Oh, Nick, you’re coming out.’ I was like, ‘All right.’ “
Asuncion can pitch six more innings in the series, which concludes Monday.
“He was coming out regardless if we were ahead or not,” said Trojans coach Keoni Mat-son. “I don’t want to hurt him.”
St. Anthony broke on top with two runs in the first on four straight singles, including RBI hits by Koltyn Russell and Asuncion.
In the second, the Trojans used three errors, two walks and a two-run single by Asuncion to take a 6-0 lead.
Asuncion had his first string of five straight strikeouts snapped with a leadoff walk in the third – the Spartans scored a run in the inning with the help of three errors.
St. Anthony added a run in the fifth when Micah Van Alstine walked with one out, took second on a groundout and scored on an error. The final run for the Trojans scored on an error in the sixth.
“We knew Nick would be tough on us. He’s a very tough pitcher,” said Spartans coach John Plunkett.
Jaxson Stinger was 2-for-4 with a double and two runs scored for Seabury.
* Robert Collias is at email@example.com
Henry Hegele, Rip Pahukoa (3), Jaxson Stinger (6) and Jonathan Kaopuiki; Nick Asuncion, Travis Delima (5), Colby Tam (7) and Tam, Asuncion (7). W-Asuncion (1-0). L-Hegele (0-1). 2B-Seabury Hall: Kaopuiki, Stinger.