Rainbow Wahine cap-off regular season with sweep of Pacific

Kaia Parnaby // Hawaii Athletics
Kaia Parnaby // Hawaii Athletics

STOCKTON, Calif.—The No. 20/24 University of Hawai`i softball team completed its 2013 regular season with a three-game sweep at Pacific. The Rainbow Wahine defeated the Tigers 9-3 and improved to 43-11 overall and 20-4 in the Big West, ending on a five-game win-streak. Pacific ended its season at 28-28 overall record and a 12-12 mark in the BWC. Senior pitcher Kaia Parnaby set a new single-season strike out record while freshman Alyssa Villalpando led UH at the plate with a pair of three-run home runs.

A day after Parnaby broke the Big West’s single-season win record, she broke the UH and BWC single-season strike out record with her 325th K of the year. She passed former UH All-American and fellow Aussie southpaw, Brooke Wilkins who held the record of 324 since 1994. She struck out her first batter to end the first inning and then fanned the first and last batter in the second inning to tie and then set the record. Parnaby is now 37-5 overall and 16-2 in conference after earning today’s win. She fired four shut-out innings allowing just two hits with a walk and three strike outs.

UH’s freshman pitcher Loie Kesterson closed the game tossing the final three innings. She gave up three runs on nine hits with a walk and a strike out in three innings of work.

Hawai`i scored two runs in the top of the first inning. Kelly Majam led the game off with an opposite-field double off the “Bill Simoni Field” banner on the left-centerfield fence. After a strike out, Majam moved to third on a single by Keiki Carlos. Majam then scored on a double steal leaving Carlos at second. After a fly out to center, Leisha Li`ili`i drove in Carlos with a single to center to give UH a 2-0 lead.

The ‘Bows added another run in the fourth to lead 3-0. Sharla Kliebenstein led off with a single and moved to second on a bunt single by Tara Anguiano. Kliebenstein tagged and hustled to third on a fly out to center and then scored on a sacrifice fly hit by Kayla Wartner.

Hawai`i added three more runs in the fifth and sixth innings. In the fifth, Li`ili`i and Jazmine Zamora started the inning with back-to-back singles and Villalpando drilled her first three-run home run of the day over the leftfield fence. After two fly outs to left, UH loaded the bases on a single by Majam, a walk to Wartner and a single by Carlos, but the rally ended on a strike out.

Kaile Nakao and Zamora started the sixth inning with a single and a double respectively. And for the second time in as many innings, Villalpando roped her second-straight three-run home run in the game. It marked second and third home runs of her career and she drove in a career-high six RBI in the game.

Pacific’s starting pitcher, Nikki Armagost, suffered the loss, dropping her record to 12-7 on the season. She gave up six runs on 11 hits with a walk and three strike outs. Tori Shepard threw the final three innings, giving up three runs on five hits with three walks and two strike outs.

Hawai`i will stay in Stockton to watch the NCAA tournament selection show on Sunday at 7pm PT to find out where they will be headed.

*Courtesy of Hawai’i Athletics*

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