One sister was pitching. The other sister was hitting against her.
One was, disappointingly, eliminated along with her. The other will play at least one more game.
During an ILH softball tournament elimination game Wednesday, Mid-Pacific senior Kaili-Ann Akimseu and Punahou freshman Bailey Akimseu matched up against each other.
It was the third time this season that Kaili-Ann pitched against her sister Bailey.
“We have a running joke going because all three games they’ve faced each other, Bailey gets beaned,” Buffanblu coach Robert Makahilahila said. “Before the game, we were asking her, ‘Are you gonna get hit today?’ Bailey said Kaili-Ann told her she was going to hit her today, but to wait until the game to see what happens.”
Sure enough, in the second inning, Bailey reached base after being hit by her sister’s pitch.
According to their mom, Serina Akimseu, Bailey has an advantage when they face each other because she has been catching Kaili-Ann since the elder sister started pitching.
“She has been hitting well against her because she knows how she pitches,” said Serina, who has raised the two girls along with husband Ernie Akimseu.
Kaili-Ann will play for Division III Lewis & Clark College in Oregon next season.
Bailey will be back to play for the Buffanblu — ranked fifth in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser Softball Top 10 — for three more years.
“It was a passing of the torch today,” Makahilahila said. “And siblings having fun. Bailey (who pitches and plays first base or as a designated player) has all the tools. When she throws the ball across the diamond, you can hear it humming.”
Bailey also hit a single in the fourth inning, but Kaili-Ann had the upper hand because she went 3-for-4 and was the complete-game winning pitcher.
Happy (and sad) tears flowed from Bailey’s eyes after the game when she came over to hug her big sister.
Asked if she was crying because of the loss or because it was the last time the two would play high school softball against each other, Bailey said, “Both.”
“It’s been exciting playing against her,” Bailey added. “It’s was a thrill to be in a game against her that we wanted to win so badly, and I was thinking, ‘I’m not going to let her strike me out.’ ”
Said Kaili-Ann, “You can tell she is thinking that she doesn’t want her sister blowing one by her.”
Kaili-Ann and the 10th-ranked Owls (7-8) move on to play No. 3 Maryknoll for the ILH’s second berth to the state tournament on Saturday at 10 a.m. at Sand Island Park. No. 1 Kamehameha wrapped up the league’s seeded state spot by winning the regular-season title.