Hawaii built a big early lead and held on for a 5-3 victory Friday that evened its college baseball series with visiting Portland at one win apiece.
A turnstile crowd of 2,234 at Les Murakami Stadium saw the Rainbows score four first-inning runs and improve to 6-8 on the season. The Pilots dropped to 7-5.
UH sent 10 batters to the plate in the first while getting three of its seven hits. Zack Swasey drove in the first run with a double and the Rainbows took advantage of three walks and a hit batsman in the inning by Portland starter and loser Owen Jones.
Connor Little started for Hawaii and improved to 2-0. Little allowed all seven Portland hits and three runs. He struck out six — including the side in the second inning — and walked one in 5 2/3 innings.
Michael Blake and Lenny Linsky provided 3 1/3 innings of hitless relief. Linsky went the last two innings for his fourth save.
Breland Almadova, Sean Montplaisir and Kolten Wong all paired hits for UH.