HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Valley Isle rain eased up just enough to let the hometown team reign supreme in the HHSAA baseball championship.
Baldwin scored five runs in the first two innings, limited Pearl City's offense the rest of the way, and notched the 5-1 win at Maui's Iron Maehara Stadium to finish the season 24-2.
"We knew that we had a very young team. Wasn't very deep. We lost a lot last year," Baldwin coach Jon Viela told OC16's Jordan Helle after the game. "But I have to take my hats off to our seniors. They formed a bond with the younger kids and the underclassmen that was very hard to break."
Kawena Alo-Kaonohi was instrumental in the win, though the box score may not reflect his impact. A first-inning grounder to shortstop was turned into a double play, but the fielder's choice allowed the first run of the game to find its way home.
An inning later, Alo-Kaonohi popped a two-out pitch straight up in the shallow infield for what should've been an easy out. The ball was dropped, though, allowing three runs to score to extend Baldwin's lead to 5-0.
Pearl City's lone run came on a Trestan Nakamura RBI in the bottom of the fourth.
The Wally Yonamine Foundation/HHSAA D1 Baseball State Championships All-Tournament Team is as follows:
Infield Haloa Dudiot, Baldwin
Infield Ryan Kono, Mililani
Infield Jordan Macias, Campbell
Infield Aris Nakagawa, Mililani
Outfield Nawai Ah Yen, Baldwin
Outfield Todd Takahama, Campbell
Outfield Matt Yokota, Pearl City
Catcher Kaleb Nishijo, Pearl City
Utility Damien Awai, Baldwin
Pitcher Ryan Ancheta, Mililani
Pitcher Markus Ramos, Campbell