WAIPAHU, Hawaii – BYU-Hawaii softball exploded on offense for a 9-2 victory in its first game against Chaminade, but were unable to hold off the Silverswords in a 6-5 loss in game two on Friday night at Central Oahu Regional Park.
Josey Walker, Makaela Williamson, Courtney Hiruko and Whitley Haimin all hit above .500 on the day. Lizabelle Talataina led the team with four RBI, including a double and her first career home run. Destyni Valencia (2-4) pitched eight innings between the two games, allowing only two earned runs and striking out five. The nine runs scored in the first game were a season high for the Seasiders (4-8, 2-2 PacWest).
BYU-Hawaii threatened early loading the bases with two outs after Vasquez reached on an error, Talataina singled and Walker walked, but the Seasiders were unable to capitalize. Chaminade also put runners in scoring position with one out, but Valencia was able to strike out the next batter looking and Walker tracked a long fly ball to the center-field fence to rob a home run.
Williamson led off the second with a single down the left-field line. T. Anu Memea walked with one out and both runners advanced into scoring position on a wild pitch. After Hiruko walked to load the bases, Kalynn Latu then singled down the left field line to bring Williamson home. With two outs, Talataina singled to center field to extend the lead to 3-0. Walker then singled to right center to bring in another and Talataina scored on an error by the Silverswords second baseman. Williamson came back up and singled to left center to give the Seasiders a 6-0 lead heading into the bottom of the frame.
Chaminade answered with two runs in the bottom of the second after a single to right field with two outs by Ashley Phelps brought runners in from second and third.
The Seasiders kept the offensive pressure up in the third with Memea leading off the inning with a double to left and Hiruko singled and stole a base, but the Swords were able to get Memea at third and two more groundouts ended the inning. BYU-Hawaii retired the first three Chaminade batters in the bottom of the frame after Latu grabbed a grounder up the middle, tagged second and threw to first for the inning ending double play.
After a scoreless fourth inning, two singles put a runner in scoring position and another fielding error allowed Latu to score and make it 7-2 in favor of the Seasiders. Valencia left two Silversword runners stranded and Williamson caught a runner stealing in the bottom of the frame to keep BYU-Hawaii out in front by five runs.
Williamson singled to right field to lead off the sixth and Haimin bunted her into to scoring position. Hiruko then singled to put runners on the corners. Alexa Barrett entered to pinch hit and sent a line drive down the left-field line and a diving attempt to stop the ball was missed, as both runners came home and Barrett stopped at third for a stand-up triple. The two runs ended the scoring for both teams as Valencia allowed only one hit over the final two innings.
The offense continued its momentum into the second game for the Seasiders as Hiruko led off with a single to left field. A sacrifice bunt and a passed ball set up a sacrifice fly by Barrett to bring in Hiruko for the first run of the game. Talataina then sent the ball over the left-center field fence on the next at bat to make it 2-0 in favor of BYU-Hawaii.
The Seasiders' Chelsie Childs and the Silverswords' Luana Moreno were locked into a pitching battle over the next four innings as the offense stalled for both teams. Chaminade plated one run in the third inning after Elia Lizarraga reached on an error to lead off the inning and eventually scored on a single by Amber Manuel. The Silverswords tied the game in the fifth after back-to-back 2-out doubles by Aja Keyes and Manuel.
The Seasiders answered in the top of the sixth beginning with a single by Walker. Williamson reached on a fielder's choice after the Silverswords were unable to throw Walker out at second. A passed ball and a wild pitch allowed Walker to score and Williamson came home after Haimin singled just over the out stretched arms of the shortstop.
Chaminade continued their momentum taking the lead for the first time of the night after they scored three runs on two hits going into the final inning. In the top of the seventh, Talataina sent a ball in to the left-field corner to bring home Barrett and tie the game.
The Silverswords took advantage of a two-out bases loaded situation in the bottom of the seventh, when Valencia's throw to first bounced just out of reach of the Haimin at first to end the game.
BYU-Hawaii will next face Waseda University from Japan in a doubleheader exhibition on Tuesday beginning at 1 p.m. HST.