Three wins is always better.
The University of Hawaiʻi Wāhine softball team meant business on Saturday at Rainbow Wāhine Softball Stadium as they swept their doubleheader over the Cal State Bakersfield Roadrunners 10-1 in five innings, and 5-1 in game two. The two wins mark four in a row for the Wāhine.
Dallas Millwood led the way for the Wāhine with two runs while eight other Hawaiʻi players had one run apiece. Millwood also had a team-high three RBIs.
The Lady ‘Bows came out lava hot immediately in the first inning and logged five runs right away in four hits. Brittnee Rossi was the first to log a run for the Wāhine thanks to a Nawai Kaupe double.
The Wāhine added two more runs in the inning thanks to an Izabella Martinez single, which scored Kaupe and Kaʻena Keliinoi. Millwood came through with a home run that gave Martinez the go-ahead run to make it 5-0 Hawaiʻi at the end of the first.
After a scoreless second inning, Cienna Curran logged the only run for Bakersfield at the top of the third. It was an unearned run off a Hawaiʻi error following a Cydney Curran single. It resulted in the only RBI for Bakersfield all game long.
At the bottom of the third, Hawaiʻi responded with an additional five more runs starting with Maya Nakamura after Millwood got hit by a pitch when the bases were loaded. A walk from Mya’Liah Bethea gave Hawaiʻi their next run via Haley Johnson, which turned into a Bethea RBI.
“Coach wanted us to stay relaxed throughout the whole game,” Rossi said.
Millwood, Bethea, and Mikaela Gandia-Mak added three more runs to make it 10-1 Hawaiʻi.
Bakersfield only got a single from Shaylene Fuimaono in the fourth inning. After five innings, the mercy rule came into play and Hawaiʻi was given the 10-1 win.
Rossi and Kaupe led the way for Hawaiʻi at two runs apiece. Kaupe also had a game-high three RBIs as well.
“I was very comfortable in the box,” Rossi said.
Hawaiʻi came out firing again in the second game and logged three runs immediately. That included two homers from Kaupe and Keliinoi. Kaupe’s home run resulted in Rossi scoring as well.
Bakersfield never got on the board until the third inning. An uncharacteristic throwing error on Hawaiʻi’s behalf with Savanna Montoya at bat turned into a Cieana Curran run.
Despite Hawaiʻi going scoreless for the next four innings, the Wāhine did an outstanding job preventing Bakersfield from earning any more runs. They did not score until the bottom of the sixth inning, which put some worry in Rossi.
“I don’t think it got to us at all,” Rossi added. “We still wanted to keep putting the pressure on the other team rather than ourselves.”
In that sixth inning, a pair of doubles from Rossi and Kaupe resulted in a Rossi run. An additional double from Keliinoi resulted in a Kaupe run scored. Hawaiʻi had a chance at a third run scored via Keliinoi, but Johnson and Martinez both received outs. For Bakersfield, more damage was already done, as it was now 5-1 Hawaiʻi.
Bakersfield could not log a run in the seventh, and that was all she wrote.
The Wāhine improved to 12-6 in the Big West Conference and 18-15 overall thanks to the doubleheader win. They will head on the road for three games to take on Long Beach State on Friday, Apr. 29 at 10 a.m. HST, and in a doubleheader on Saturday, Apr. 30 at 10 a.m. HST and 12 noon HST. Neither of these three games will be televised or heard on the radio.
The three matchups against Long Beach State (12-5) will be a battle for second place in the Big West standings. If the Wāhine can win at least two games, they will be in second place in the standings.