HONOLULU, O'ahu --- UC Irvine was pummeled in the middle innings by the Hawai'i Rainbow Warriors en route to a 6-2 defeat Friday night at Les Murakami Stadium.
Hawai'i (26-17, 8-8) broke out the bats in the fourth scoring two thanks to the first of five doubles in the game. UCI pushed across the tying run the next half inning, but the Bows continued its double onslaught to take the lead back in the bottom half of the fifth.
The game really broke open in the bottom of the sixth from a long two-run homer by Josh Rojas that just stayed fair to put Hawai'i up 5-2 after six.
The doubles continued to push the lead to 6-2, and Casey Ryan shut the door with two scoreless innings down the stretch to give the Rainbow Warriors a second straight series-opening win by that score.
Ryan cleaned up for Brendan Hornung who gave up one earned run over seven innings to pick up a sixth win on the season. UCI starter Louis Raymond was tagged for seven hits and four earned runs in his six innings dropping to 3-5 on the campaign.
Damla helped pace the offense with a pair of hits, a run, and a stolen base. Dustin Demeter led the way for UH with three hits and a pair of RBI while Adam Fogel led the doubles charge with two and drove a run home.
The Anteaters will have an extra day to build up and get back in the series as Hawai'i celebrates its graduation day on Saturday. The series picks back up on Sunday at 5:00 p.m. locally, 8:00 p.m. in Irvine.