Tritons fall to Rainbow Warriors in weekend matchup

Tritons fall to Rainbow Warriors in weekend matchup
Image by Sarah He for The UCSD Guardian

The University of Hawaii at Manoa Rainbow Warriors (24–15, 8–9 Big West) walloped the UC San Diego Tritons (26–13, 13–7 Big West) 14–6 on Saturday at the Triton Ballpark. Hawaii’s starting pitcher gave up just 4 hits in 6 ⅓ innings while their left fielder went 4–5 and scored twice. This was the second of three games in their homestand against the Rainbow Warriors, which concluded on Sunday afternoon. 

 

Following a disappointing 10th-inning loss in the rain the night before, the Tritons looked to bounce back on a sunny Saturday afternoon; early in the game, it looked like they may get their revenge. Freshman center fielder Michael Crossland homered in the first, while redshirt freshman designated hitter Delshaun Lanier had one of his own in the second. This, paired with a shutout from redshirt freshman pitcher Matthew Dalquist, put the Tritons up 2–0 through two innings.

 

Unfortunately, things quickly spiraled out of control for the Tritons. An RBI single in the third and a sac-fly in the fourth allowed Hawaii to tie the game up at 2–2. Hawaii’s starter also hit his stride, not allowing a single hit in this stretch. On the flip side, Dalquist began to struggle, putting the Tritons in a precarious position at the top of the fifth.

 

With momentum on their side and runners in scoring position, Hawaii took the lead, 3–2, after a fielder’s choice. The next at-bat saw the Rainbow Warriors’ first baseman hit a home run to extend their lead to 5–2. This was only the beginning. After failing to score in the bottom of the fifth, the Tritons gave up two more runs in the sixth on an RBI double. 

 

The Tritons, now down 7–2, were still in the game. After an RBI single in the seventh cut Hawaii’s lead back down to three, the Tritons were looking to rally back. Hawaii’s starter had just been pulled, and his reliever looked shaky on the mound — perhaps the tide was turning back in favor of the Tritons.

 

Then came a brutal eighth inning. Two RBI singles and a home run came nearly in succession, and the once 3-run deficit quickly turned into 8. Hawaii tacked on 2 more that inning, extending their lead to 10. While the Tritons scored a few runs in the bottom of the ninth, it was too little too late, as they ran out of time with the score stuck at 14–6.

 

With back-to-back losses against Hawaii, the Tritons are slowly falling in the Big West standings, while Hawaii slowly climbs the rankings. UCSD and Hawaii are now 5th and 6th in the conference, respectively. Still, in a tight race for the Big West regular season champion, the Tritons are still very much alive, only a couple of games back of UC Irvine, whom they hold a tiebreaker against.

 

Following this series against Hawaii, however, the Tritons won’t play at home until their final three games of the regular season against the Cal Poly Mustangs. Their extended road trip will begin this Tuesday when they take on the Arizona State Sun Devils (22-21, 12-11 Pac-12) in the desert.

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About the Contributors
Ryan Kirton, Contributing Writer
I am a junior majoring in Psychology and Communications and I am on the swim team.
Sarah He
Sarah He, Co-Webmaster, Photographer & Data Visualizer
1st year | Data Science & Cognitive Science
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