OIA Baseball Tournament Starts Today
No one will be surprised if the OIA baseball title comes out of the Red West this weekend. As in past years, the Red West once again proved itself to be arguably the most balanced baseball conference in the state. Indeed, you know the league is ultra- competitive when perennial power Pearl City fails to make the field.
Pairings for the OIA tournament, which begins today (April 30) at high schools across Oahu, were still to be determined at press time, but Campbell is assured of hosting a quarterfinal game at 3:30 p.m. Thursday against an opponent still to be determined. The OIA semifinals and championship game will be played Friday and Saturday, respectively, at Hans L’Orange Field in Waipahu. The top six finishers in the OIA receive the league’s berths for the Division I state tournament May 13-16 in Les Murakami Stadium at UH-Manoa.
A look at West Oahu teams follows. Aiea High Season record: 4-8 in OIA Red West
Key wins: Over Mililani 6-1 March 19, over Pearl City 2-0 March 26, over Waipahu 9-2 April 5
Na Ali‘i at a glance: Despite entering the postseason with just a 4-8 record, Aiea was only a few plays away from a much better fate during the season, as three of its losses (3-2 to Leilehua, 1-0 to Campbell and 7-5 to Kapolei) could have been wins. Producing more offense will be among Aiea’s greater chores now, as it mustered just three runs in its final season games. Aiea averaged 6.2 runs per game in its four wins. Campbell High Season record: 11-1 in OIA Red West
Key wins: Over Mililani 5-4 March 5, over Mililani 2- 0 March 26, over Waipahu 5-2 April 11, over Aiea 2-0 April 16
Sabers at a glance: The Sabers were as flawless as a team could be in their Red West season, winning the first 11 games as well as posting five shutouts along the way to earn the top seed. All told, the team gave up just 12 runs in its 11 league games, by far the fewest yielded by any OIA team.
A stellar pitching staff of Zach Kapihe, Dorrien Villanueva-Hemosura, Ian Kahaloa and Dirk Patrick Hinman has kept the opposition down.
Offensively, Campbell also has been second to none, producing an OIARed West-best 75 runs in its 12 games to date. Kapolei High Season record: 5-7 in OIA Red West
Key wins: Over Aiea 7-5 March 8, over Waipahu 3-1 April 16, over Pearl City 3-2 April 19, over Aiea 9-6 April 2
Hurricanes at a glance: If any team is peaking at playoff time, it may be the Hurricanes, who won four of their last six games. That stretch included a pair of defensive gems versus both Waipahu (a 3-1 win) and Pearl City (a 3-2 win).
Remove from the mix a 10-0 loss at mid-season to Campbell, and Kapolei was in every game this spring.
Pitcher Aizon Kahana has been a key performer so far with a 1.75 ERA and a 3-2 record. Waipahu High Season record: 6-6 in OIA Red West
Key wins: Over Aiea 6- 1 March 12, over Mililani 12- 1 April 2, over Pearl City 4-1 April 9
Marauders at a glance: The Marauders will begin the post-season this week looking to regroup after losing three of their last four games, which cost them a first-round bye.
Senior pitcher Dylan Sugimoto (three wins, two losses and a save) has been among the state’s best as expected, compiling an ERA of .088 in 32 innings of work. On the offensive side, Waipahu’s 58 runs scored ranked it second only to Red West champion Campbell during the season.