Kalani infielder Muramoto to sign with Rainbow Wahine


Les Murakami's legacy lives with the University of Hawaii-Manoa baseball stadium that bears his name. But beginning with the 2024 season, it will extend across the street.

Murakami's granddaughter, Kalani senior infielder Madixx Muramoto, said she will sign a national letter of intent Wednesday to play softball for the Rainbow Wahine.

A life-long UH fan, Muramoto said she has always wanted to play at the school, where her grandfather is a legend.

"It's really special," she said. "It's an honor. It's kind of added pressure, but it's good pressure. (My grandfather) has been my inspiration my whole life."

She added that she has attended many UH sporting events and that "playing in front of friends and family is important."

Muramoto, who is 5 feet 6, is primarily a shortstop, but has played other positions for the Falcons, who finished tied for first in the Oahu Interscholastic Association Division I East last season but were seeded second by a tiebreaker. She batted .349 with 14 runs scored and 14 RBI. She had two doubles, two triples and two home runs. Her last homer accounted for all the Falcons' runs in a 13-3 loss to Mililani in last year's state tournament. She has been a starter since her freshman year.

Muramoto honed her skills during the offseason with the California Bombers club team, which is coached by former Major League closer Chad Cordero, who will be Iolani's new softball coach this coming season. Cordero led the MLB with 47 saves in 2005. Despite his past accolades at the highest level, Muramoto described him as "down to earth."

"He really helped with my confidence," Muramoto said. "He's a really cool guy. It was amazing to be coached by him."

Muramoto was introduced to the California club by future teammate Cierra Yamamoto, a Mililani graduate who is a freshman for the Rainbow Wahine.

Muramoto said her grandfather, who drops by to watch baseball on occasion, will be visiting the softball stadium, too, in the future.

"I think he's pretty happy," she said.

Reach Stacy Kaneshiro at [email protected].

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