Kaiser has taken the lead in the OIA East softball race after a 6-4 home win over Roosevelt.
Both teams were undefeated heading into Tuesday’s matchup, but the Cougars gained an early edge thanks in large part to the Aholelei sisters.
All four of them had a hand in the victory, helping the Cougars improve to 6-0 while the Rough Riders dropped to 5-1.
Primrose Aholeilei tossed a complete game, striking out four and walking one while giving up eight hits. She also added two hits and two RBIs at the plate. Christiana Aholelei led the way offensively with two hits and a game-high three RBIs. Ivane Aholelei also had two hits to go along with a run, RBI and walk. Precious Aholelei had no hits but drew a walk and scored.
In all, the sisters combined to have six of the team’s seven hits and five of the team’s six RBIs.
“Usually I’m a pull hitter but I decided to wait on the ball today,” Christina Aholelei said. “I just had to adjust my swing. Seeing all my teammates on base, I just thought of bringing them in and that’s what happened.”
Primrose Aholelei earned the win despite running into some trouble in the top of the seventh. Facing a 6-2 deficit to start the inning, Roosevelt’s Jadalee Takara doubled and Hoku Ching followed with a home run to make it 6-4.
Maya Nakamura followed with a double, but became a victim of the look-back rule for the first out of the inning when she tried to advance to third. Because Primrose Aholelei had control of the ball in the pitcher’s circle while Nakamura tried to advance, she was called out after a meeting between the umpires.
Primrose Aholelei got Kylie Kawamura and Jaeda Cabunoc to fly out to end the game.
“They thought everybody was not paying attention so they went over to third base. But according to us, we already had the ball in the circle,” Kaiser coach Mitch Matsumoto explained. “That’s a look-back rule. You can’t do that, so that’s an automatic out.
“If she didn’t have the ball and she was out of the circle, then they could have ran back because the play is still going on.”
“I thought they were gonna score more runs after,” Primrose Aholelei said of the inning. “I feel pretty good about where we are, we just need more work on our defense and hitting.”
Matsumoto acknowledged that the season is still young, and it would take more for his team to dethrone Roosevelt, which won the division last year.
“We’re 6-0 so of course we feel good, but the bad thing is we gotta play them again,” he said. “The wind on this field held up a lot of fly balls for them for our outfielders to get. When we play them again, it’s not gonna be like that … That’s a good team.”