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Hawaii baseball wins 2-0 in road victory over Long Beach State

Six pitchers combined on the Hawaii baseball team’s fifth shutout of the season in today’s 2-0 road victory over Long Beach State at Blair Field.

All the offense the Rainbow Warriors needed was manufactured on Jake Tsukada’s RBI double in the first inning and Itsuki Takemoto’s run-scoring groundout in the second.

Brayden Marx, Zacary Tenn, Danny Veloz, Takemoto, Connor Harrison and Alex Giroux yielded a combined six hits.

“It’s Game 7, win or go home,” UH coach Rich Hill said of the all-in strategy of starting a reliever (Marx) and bringing back two pitchers who played on Friday (Harrison and Giroux).

In the ninth, the Dirtbags loaded the bases with two outs. Kyle Ashworth then hit a grounder that went past Giroux and appeared headed to center field.

“I tried to reach down for it,” Giroux said. “It was kind of one those ‘tweener ones where it’s hit a little hard, a little soft. I reached down for it but didn’t really get a piece. I had faith in my shortstop (Jordan Donahue). He’s been making those plays all year. I knew once it got through and I saw Jordan right there, we had it.”

Donahue’s throw to his cousin, first baseman Kyson Donahue, clinched the ’Bows’ seventh series victory against nine Big West opponents.

Takemoto, a freshman from Japan, went 1-for-3 as the designated hitter and allowed two hits in 1 2/3 scoreless innings of relief.

“It was so fun,” Takemoto said. “I was, like, a two way in high school. This is my first time in college. … I want to say thank you to Coach (Rich Hill) for giving me the opportunity.”

The ’Bows improved to 34-16 overall and 17-10 in the Big West.

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