Sweeep! Rodriguez pitches Pearl City past Mililani 2-0, 12-3

Mar 20, 2011 | PC Sports


Pearl City picked up a doubleheader sweep of Mililani on Saturday in Oahu Interscholastic Association Red Western Division Softball played at Pearl City High School. 

Pearl City Lady Chargers starting pitcher Sella Rodriguez took care of the defending 2010 OIA Red Champion from Mililani, pitching a total of 14 outstanding innings in the doubheader. In game one, Rodriguez shut out the Lady Trojans 2-0 on a three hitter. In game two, the Lady Chargers offense backed up Rodriguez pounding out 13 hits in the 12-3 victory.

                                                             Photo by Barry Villamil | [email protected]

Sella Rodriguez throwing strikes on her way to a 12-3 game 2 victory on Saturday.

“I’ve been coaching here a long time and time and we’ve never swept Mililani, great program,” said Chargers head coach Keoke Behic. “A couple of things standout today, again Sella pitched outstanding. I think that’s the key for us. She pitched absolutely outstanding and we made the fundamental plays on defense and towards the end we clutched up. We got big hits that counted. For this group we pitch well, play good defense and get timely hitting.”

                                                             Photo by Barry Villamil | [email protected]

Keani Passi pictured stroking a single off of Mililani starting pitcher Joen Baker in the first innng of game 2. Passi hit 3-4 in game 2.

Passi pictured launching a pitch in the top of the 5th inning for a double that just missed clearing the center field fence.

In game one, the Lady Chargers scored 2 runs in the bottom of the first inning against Lady Trojans starting pitcher Tiare-Jay Fernandez. Fernandez held the Lady Chargers to two hits in seven innings in the 2-0 loss.

In game two, the Lady Trojans scored first in the bottom of the first inning off of Chargers starting pitcher Sella Rodriguez. Pearl City would jump on Mililani starting pitcher Joen Baker in the top of the second inning for four runs to go up 4-1. Courtney Ahlo led off with a single into right field. Next batter Joe-Ann Rapoza hit an infield grounder that forced out Ahlo at second base for the first out. Rapoza stole second base to move into scoring position. Tiari Walker hit a single to put runners on first and second. Sella Rodriguez reached first base and Rapoza scored from second on an error. Ashley-Laura Johnson hit an RBI double that scored Walker from second base. Sierra Mendiola hit an RBI ground out to first base putting the Lady Chargers up 3-1 with two outs. Sierra Tadiarca hit an RBI single for the final run of the inning and a 4-1 lead.

The Lady Trojans picked up a couple runs in the bottom of the 3rd inning to close within one run of the Lady Chargers 4-3.

Pearl City came back big in the top of the 6th inning scoring 8 runs. Mililani used three pitchers in the inning. Top of the 6th inning scoring started with Courtney Ahlo being driven in by Joe-Ann Rapoza’s hard hit RBI double with one out. Sierra Mendiola hit a bases loaded 2 RBI single. Sierra Tadiarca hit an RBI single with 2 outs to put the Lady Chargers up 8-3.

                                                             Photo by Barry Villamil | [email protected]

Joe-Ann Rapoza pictured hitting an RBI double scoring Courtney Ahlo for the first of 8 runs scored by the Lady Chargers in the top the 6th inning.

Mililani would make a pitching change bringing in Rayna Malina. Next batter Keani Passi lined an RBI single to center field scoring Mendiola from second base. Lady Chargers up 8-3. Maya Nagata, last week’s hero with a game winning 3-run homerun against Leilehua does it again with a 3-run smash over the center field fence to put the Lady Chargers into a commanding 12-3 lead. Mililani replaced Malina bringing in Alysia Maddison who recorded the third out.

Pearl City held Mililani scoreless the rest of the way. Sella Rodriguez earned the win for the Lady Chargers. Joen Baker took the loss for Mililani.

The Lady Chargers offensive attack is hitting full stride with productivity and maturity at the plate improving with each game.

“The difference with these girls is the more pitching they see, the more they see the pitcher, the more confident they get,” said Behic. “With a group like this that’s seasoned and have a lot of experience I think that was the key. Like I said last week, the more pitches we see the more successful we’ll be.”

Part of the success of the Lady Chargers at the plate this season is the adjustment to the pitching mound that was moved back from 40 to 43 feet.

“The bottom line is 3 feet. From 40 to 43 feet makes a huge difference, especially with this team that can swing the bat,” said Behic. “Three feet extra that we can see the ball makes a huge difference. If we can keep that same approach, we can be competitive down the stretch.”

                                                             Photo by Barry Villamil | [email protected]

Maya Nagata powered a 6th inning 3-run homerun over the center field fence at the Lady Chargers Stadium.

                                                             Photo by Barry Villamil | [email protected]

Mililani's center fielder tracks Nagata's 3-run homerun as the ball sails over the center field fence in 6th inning.

The Lady Chargers (3-1) pull into a tie atop the OIA Red Western Division with defending state champion Campbell (3-1) and will face off in a doubleheader match up with the Lady Sabers on Saturday, March 26 at Central Oahu Regional Park. Game two of the doubleheader will be televised live on OC-16.  

“We have a very tough match up this weekend against Campbell,” said coach Behic. “They’re a really good team. We have to prepare this week to face good pitching and sound defense. We’ll go back to work on Monday and see if we can take care of business this weekend.”

Leading hitters in game 2:

PC: Sierra Mendiola 2-4 2 RBI, 1 Run: Keani Passi 3-4, 1 RBI, 1 Run; Maya Nagata 1-4, 3 RBI, 1 Run, HR; Courtney Ahlo 2-3, 1 Run; Joe-Ann Rapoza 1-4, 1 RBI, 2 Runs

Mililani: Cheyenne Koki 2-4, 1 Run; Toni Baysa 2-4, 2 Runs; Joen Baker 2-2, 2 RBI;  Alysia Maddison 2-3, 1 RBI

WP – Sella Rodriguez

L – Joen Baker

                                                             Photo by Barry Villamil | [email protected]

2011 Pearl City Lady Chargers, playing hard and having fun!