Caden Perreira-Lau and Ikena Juan combined on a two-hitter to lead Honokaa to a 2-1 win over Keaau in a Big Island Interscholastic Federation baseball game Monday at Honokaa County Park.
Perreira-Lau started for Division II Honokaa (2-1) and pitched 5 1/3 innings of no-hit baseball. But he walked two batters in the fifth with the game tied at 1 and Juan came on to extinguish the Cougars rally.
In the bottom of the fifth, Kamaehu Richards was hit by a pitch, stole second base and advanced to third on Austin Jardine’s single to center field. Richards then raced home on a Keaau error to give the Dragons a 2-1 lead.
The Cougars, who were held hitless through the first six innings, threatened in the seventh. Derek Kalani singled off Juan but was later caught trying to steal second base.
Richard Hatori-Kananakaole was hit by a pitch and sprinted to third base on David Benevides’ single, to put runners on the corners. But Juan got the next Keaau batter to ground out and secure the victory for the Dragons.
Juan, who hurled 1 2/3 innings, allowed both Cougar hits and the run. He struck out two and walked one while earning the win.
“Our defense was the key. We made plays when we had to make plays,” Honokaa coach Gayne Kobayashi said. “We’re a young team and excited to win, but we were prepared. We’ve been practicing hard. Our defense made plays to back the pitching staff.”
Hard-throwing Keian Kanetani started and went the distance for D-I Keaau (0-3). He scattered four hits and gave up two unearned runs to go along with three strikeouts and three walks. Kanetani took the loss, while the visitors commited three errors.
Nainoa Faulk led the Dragons with two hits and scored a run. Jardine and Jeremy Charbonnaeau had the other Honokaa hits.
The Dragons plated a run in the bottom of the first inning when lead-off batter Faulk singled and came around to score to make it 1-0.
The Cougars tied the score at 1-all in the top of the second when Byron Cachola scored on Derek Kalani’s sacrifice bunt.