Bears down Warriors, win MIL regular-season crown
Baldwin headed to first state tourney since ’15
KAHULUI — Saree-Ann Kekahuna has never been to the softball state tournament.
Next month, that will change.
The Baldwin High School softball team clinched its first state berth since winning the 2015 Maui Interscholastic League championship with an 11-1, five-inning win over Kamehameha Maui on Wednesday at Patsy Mink Field.
“Well, I feel great because we worked toward this goal,” Kekahuna said after the junior catcher and her Bears teammates ran their record to 10-0. “This is one step towards our goal — now that second step is bringing that trophy home, so I feel we’re doing great.”
Baldwin can wrap up the MIL crown by winning the league tournament or a championship playoff game against the MIL tournament winner.
“It’s really big,” said Baldwin coach Sanoe Kekahuna, Saree-Ann’s older sister. “We’ve been somewhat the underdogs the last couple of years as far as players and stuff, but we’ve worked hard.”
Baldwin took control against the Warriors (6-4) in the first inning.
Kamehameha Maui tallied its run in the top of the first when Jerriah Solomon doubled to lead off and scored on an error.
Baldwin struck for seven runs in the bottom of the first by taking advantage of four walks, three hit batters and eight wild pitches.
Aliya Harmon pitched a four-hitter with seven strikeotus and two walks. She was also 2-for-4 at the plate with a double and a run scored.
Kamehameha Maui is clinging to second place with two games to play — the young Warriors have just two seniors on the roster.
“All the way around, they’re complete,” Kamehameha coach Mark Vaught said of the Bears. “Offensively, defensively they’re a very complete team.”
He likes the way his team is playing as the MIL tournament nears.
“I think our chances are as good as anyone else’s,” Vaught said. “We’re a young team, but we’re ready to play. We’ve come out this season with a different level of confidence. We’ll get back to work, we’ll continue working hard, the girls are really doing well and responding well.”
* Robert Collias is at firstname.lastname@example.org
KS Maui ….. 100 … 00-1… 4 … 2
Baldwin …… 711 … 2x-11… 4 … 2
Melia Kama and Kanoe Kahahane; Aliya Harmon and Saree-Ann Kekahuna. W-Harmon. L-Kama. 2B-Kamehameha Maui: Jerriah Solomon; Baldwin: Harmon.
Leading hitters-Baldwin: Harmon 2-4, run.
W L Pct. GB
x-Baldwin 10 0 1.000 —
Kamehameha Maui 6 4 .600 4
Lahainaluna 4 5 .444 5-1⁄2
King Kekaulike 2 7 .222 7-1⁄2
Maui High 2 8 .200 8
W L Pct. GB
x-Molokai 7 0 1.000 —
Lanai 1 3 .333 3-1⁄2
Hana 0 5 .000 5-1⁄2
x-clinched regular-season championship
Baldwin 11, Kamehameha Maui 1, 5 innings
Lahainaluna 14, King Kekaulike 4, 5 innings
Hana at Lanai, 4 p.m.
Kamehameha Maui vs. Lahainaluna at Maui High, 6 p.m.
King Kekaulike at Maui High, 10 a.m.
Hana at Lanai, 10 a.m.