Prep softball: Moeaki leads East rout of Highland
There's a reason Alexis Moeaki is East's leadoff hitter.
Moeaki started the game with an inside-the-park home run.
That was just the beginning.
She slapped a single in the second inning and a double in the third.
Moeaki finished the cycle in the fifth when she drilled the ball to right-center for a stand-up triple in East's 17-4 victory over Highland in softball action Tuesday.
"I've never done that before," Moeaki said. "It felt good to get my team pumped up."
East's deep offense and commanding pitching proved to be too much for Highland. Leopards hurler Angelique Lokeni set the tone with her fastball and defense in the circle by striking out seven and issuing only one walk.
Lokeni overpowered Highland in the second inning, striking out the side on only 13 pitches. Her delivery is deceptive, coming off of her hip, which makes the right-handed fastball and curve very difficult to hit.
"She's a solid force on the mound and that's just her personalityshe's very positive and a great kid," East coach Marianne Bullis said. "We're lucky to have her."
Moeaki and Lokeni are two of the six freshmen on East's roster. They might be too young to drive a car, but they have no problem driving extra-base hits. East hit seven doubles and two triples. With Kuea Angilau's three-run shot in the fifth, the Leopards finished with a pair of home runs.
Bullis was impressed with her team's patience at the plate and smart base running. She credited Moeaki for being a strong leadoff hitter and establishing East's presence at the plate.
"She's seeing and hitting the ball well," Bullis said. "She has a lot of talent at the plate. She's real exciting for East and definitely a part of the future of the program."
Highland pitcher Nohea Raphael might have been roughed up in the circle, but she redeemed herself at the plate in the fifth. With a runner on first, Raphael drilled the ball to deep center and circled the bases for an inside-the-park home run.