Those judging a softball player’s worth by on home runs and RBIs may miss the value in a player like Campbell’s Jayda Favela.
She is a Jayda of all trades. A solid second baseman, she quietly fueled the top-ranked Sabers’ 7-6 comeback victory at home over No. 10 Leilehua on Saturday morning.
This is what the kid sister of former Campbell standouts Elisa and Trinity Favela did:
>> Reached base four times
>> Went 2-for-3 by beating out two infield hits
>> Scored two runs, including one on a squeeze bunt by Liana Nagamine
>> Stole three bases
>> Got hit by pitches on the arm and in the back, but only was awarded first base on one of those because she was out of the batter’s box on the other one. Fans in the stands have the count of HPBs to Favela at around six through five games.
On Favela’s first hit, it was a solid, slow-rolling placement down the third-base line — not a bunt and more of an easy slap.
“I’m trying to get on base and create havoc,” said Favela, who is only a sophomore.
Sabers coach Michael Hermosura is aware of Favela’s capabilities and was not surprised with her major role in the slow, but sure comeback that took Campbell from a 6-1 deficit to the one-run win.
“Everybody’s like ‘OK, watch for her. You don’t know what she’s going to do.’ ” Hermosura said. “Jayda adds a lot to our team. I’ve always said this: Jayda will be No. 1 among the three sisters. She’s so versatile. She can slap it, stay there and hit it, fast bunt and can turn things around by herself.”
To be approaching Elisa and Trinity in ability and to be projected to bypass them is saying something. Elisa was an All-State player of the year and both she and Trinity were part of teams that won multiple state titles.
At 5 feet, 100 pounds, Favela bats fifth in the order, right in the middle. In a way, a perfect place to be to cause some small-ball havoc right after the big swatters come up.
Campbell (5-0) also got a strong offensive performance from Dyllan Sanay Shiraishi, who went 3-for-4 with a stolen base and two RBIs.
Sabers left-hander Chloe Sales pitched 4 2/3 innings of two-hit scoreless relief for the win. She came in with a 6-1 deficit.
“Switching pitchers at an opportune time,” Leilehua coach Wendell Au said. “That’s the kind of thing that makes Campbell a really, really good team.”
After the Mules’ big offensive start, they started to stagnate.
“You can’t go 1-2-3, 1-2-3 following a big inning,” Au added.
The Mules (2-3) were led by Jacelyn Kepaa, who finished with a home run and four RBIs while going 3-for-4.
“Every loss is hard,” said Kepaa, who is also a sophomore. “But it’s not about all the losses you have. It’s about the outcome at the end.”
Leilehua, the defending Division I state champion, will try to hit the .500 mark on Tuesday at home against Pearl City (2-3).
The Sabers, who won three straight state titles before Leilehua last season, play at home against Mililani (3-2) on Tuesday. They’re trying to hold off second-place Waianae (4-1), which hosts Kapolei on Tuesday (2-3).