ILH Softball
Grace, Lono lead Saints past upstart Monarchs


  



Wed, Feb 27, 2019 @ [ 4:00 pm ]


F/5TH 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 R H E
">Damien 1 0000XX124
">Saint Francis 4 5 101XX11150

W: Shaylann Marie Grace    L: Gloriana Sua

SFS: Jordyn Lono 3-3 run 3 rbi HR; Shaylann Marie Grace 2.0 IP 0 ER 4 K
DMS: Rylee Gaudia 1-2 run rbi HR


ALA WAI — After an early hiccup, the defending Division II state champions broke the game open with their bats.

Shaylann Grace and Jordyn Lono each belted a home run to lead Saint Francis to a season-opening 11-1 win over upstart Damien in Interscholastic League of Honolulu softball at Ala Wai Community Park Wednesday afternoon.

The Saints (1-0) rapped out 15 hits — three apiece for Grace and Lono — in the game that ended in the bottom of the fifth with a solo homer by the former of the duo.

Grace, a transfer from Konawaena, batted 3 for 4 with two runs scored and tossed two scoreless innings in relief of starter Sierra Kupihea, to get the win. She allowed one hit, struck out four and did not walk a batter.

"We lost some big bats last year and (Grace) is going to fill in the holes. She's got a great bat, she's got a good glove, she can play defense and she can pitch very well," Saint Francis coach Randy Langsi said.

Lono, the Saints' clean-up hitter, reached on an infield single in a four-run bottom of the first inning. In her next at-bat, she cranked a 3-1 pitch well over the centerfield fence to score Kaena Keliinoi — whose one-out RBI single to plate Garcia two batters prior made the score 5-1 — and Grace. Saint Francis added a run in the frame on Sierra Kupihea's two-out single to center plated Julianne Johnson from second.

Keliinoi (2 for 4, three runs scored), Johnson (2 for 3, double, RBI, two runs) and Kylee Bednar (2 for 3) also paired hits for the Saints.

Keliinoi, a four-year varsity starter who is signed with the University of Hawaii, batted from the left side in her third and fourth at-bats after hitting right-handed in her first two plate appearances.

"We were working on a lot of things, situational stuff," Langsi said.

Damien freshman catcher Rylee Gaudia led off the game with a home run over the left field fence.

"Oops," Langsi laughed. "That's all I can say. It was a good morale pick-up for them and it was kind of like a little pinch for us, but you know, I mean, those kind of things — it doesn't matter if it's Damien or anybody — you can't make those kind of mistakes from our battery, our pitching."

The only other hit registered by the Monarchs was Jhasidee Van Gieson's two-out double to left in the top of the fourth inning.

"I think we did way better (than Monday). We kept pushing, keeping our heads up, because Monday's game was kind of hard," Gaudia said, referring to a 38-0 loss to Iolani.

Gloriana Sua allowed 15 hits in four-plus innings pitched for the Monarchs (0-2), who are in their first season of varsity softball. Nine of the 11 runs Sua allowed were earned. She walked three batters and was hindered by six wild pitches.

"This is my first year catching for her and it's a struggle for us both, but I think we're pushing through and we're gonna get there. I believe so," Gaudia said.

Sherreigh Nakoa-Chung, the third pitcher used by Saint Francis, struck out the side in the top of the fifth, her only inning of work.

"We have a pretty good freshman in Sherreigh. She's pretty good, so we've got three good pitchers that will help us along, that's going to help us get pretty far. We're going to try some rotational pitching, but we'll see how it goes. We don't know," Langsi said.

Langsi has just 12 players on his roster this season. Only nine were available for Wednesday's game.

Damien's next game will be Saturday against Punahou, its second Division-I opponent this season, while Saint Francis won't play again until it faces PAC-5 on Wednesday.



Reach Kalani Takase at [email protected].


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