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Rainbow Wahine shut out East Carolina

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Hawaii freshman Brittany Hitchcock might have a couple of bruises to show for her effort on Tuesday, but the Rainbow Wahine right-hander managed to finish off her second shutout of the season in UH’s 5-0 win over East Carolina at Rainbow Wahine Softball Stadium.

Hitchcock gave up at least one hit in each inning — including one off her leg and another off her hand –but earned her third complete-game victory in her last four starts for the Wahine (17-9). She gave up nine hits, struck out six and walked none.

UH right fielder Keiki Carlos made solid contact in all three plate appearances, sparking the Wahine with a double in the first inning and capping the scoring with a two-run homer in the fifth.

Kayla Wartner walked to lead off the bottom of the first and Carlos doubled to left center. After a strikeout, UH took the lead on Heather Morales’ looping single into center field. Carlos then scored on the back end of an attempted double steal.

ECU pitcher Ashley Cruise kept the Wahine quiet over the next three innings, retiring 11 consecutive hitters at one stretch. But the Wahine broke away with a three-run fifth, which began with Leisha Li’ili’i’s one-out double to left field.

Tayana Mata laid down a bunt and the throw to first was wild and Chenoa Au, pinch-running for Li’ili’i, came around to score on the error. With two out, Carlos homered to center field to give UH a 5-0 cushion.

Hitchcock spaced eight singles until Meredith Mitchell led off the top of the seventh with a double to left center But Hitchcock got a ground out and ended the game with back-to-back strikeouts.

Mililani graduate Kacie Oshiro went 3-for-3 for the Pirates (7-16).

After winning its lone stand-alone game of the nonconference schedule, UH opens the Hawaii Pacific Health Rainbow Wahine Classic on Wednesday against Western Illinois. The five-day tournament also features St. Bonaventure, Virginia Tech and Columbia.

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