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Trojans Shortstop Named Red West Softball Player Of The Year

Mililani softball team could always count on Jade Yadao-Valdez to help set the tone for the Trojans. The senior shortstop was also Mililani’s lead-off hitter — and with good reason, as her ability to get on base figured big in the Trojans’ success this spring. In all, Yadao-Valdez batted .490 for the year and scored 19 runs to lead her team.

Her exploits were not lost on opposing coaches in the OIA Red West Conference, who recently selected her as the league’s Player of the Year in a vote at season’s end.

Yadao-Valdez and her Mililani teammates went 15-3 overall en route to winning both the OIA post-season tournament as well as the New City Nissan Division I State Championship. The Trojans won their last eight games, including three by a onerun margin.

Joining Yadao-Valdez on the Red West’s First Team were sophomore pitcher Aubree Kim and senior outfielder Tori-Anne Baysa.

Kim saved some of her best efforts for the State Tournament, as she went 3-0 and allowed just one earned run and six hits in 21 innings in helping the Trojans defeat Maryknoll, Mid-Pacific and Campbell on their way to the title.

Baysa hit .353 and drove in nine runs for Mililani.

Mililani also placed first baseman Karly Macadangdang and second baseman Justine Fabella on the Red West’s Second Team. Both are seniors.

Maya Yoshiura, Kristen Ishii, Markie Okamoto, Kylyn Sasaki and Keri Togami made the Honorable Mention Team from Mililani.

Leilehua boasted a pair of Second Team All-Conference selections in senior shortstop Chenoa Au and freshman utility player Ashley Salausa. The Mules won a play-in game over Waiakea to make the State Tournament field and continued their upward mobility there, with riveting wins over both Waianae and fourth-seeded Hilo to advance to the semifinals. Leilehua, which finished 10-11 overall for the season, ended up fourth at the State Tournament.

Salausa batted .436 for the year with nine RBI. Au batted .482 for the Mules and also batted in nine runs.

Leilehua also placed Tiana Kawelo-Cantero and Taezha Cordeor on the Honorable Mention Team.

In Division II, Kaili Agabin was chosen as an OIA White Conference First Team All-Star from Waialua. The Bulldogs went 13-6 overall and finished fourth at the OIA White Tournament en route to earning a berth in the New City Nissan Division II State Tournament.

Receiving Honorable Mention from Waialua were Keahi Pang, Selena Victoria, Shawn Kauwalu, Amber Alejandro and Christel Agtina.

jackster.1969@yahoo.com

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