Hawaii baseball: Scotty Scott looking to build on Freshman of the Year campaign

Hawaii outfielder Scotty Scott hit a double against the North Dakota State on Friday. He followed that up with another multi-hit game on Saturday. / Photo by Jamm Aquino, Star-Advertiser

Following a lackluster offensive performance by Hawaii in the series opener against North Dakota State, getting the bats going was an obvious priority in Game 2. A new-look lineup responded with 10 runs on 10 hits in a 10-2 beatdown of the Bison on Saturday afternoon.

“We’re a really good ball club all the way up and down,” leadoff hitter Scotty Scott said. “Three or four new guys, but they act like they’ve been there. Daylen (Calicdan) got a couple hits, Brennen (Hancock) hit the ball hard, Matt Campos hit the ball well. It’s really about those guys. They don’t play yesterday, and they come in and ball out today, that’s the kind of energy we need.”

Scott was one of the familiar faces in the new lineup. The left fielder was once again a consistent force at the plate for the Rainbow Warriors (3-1), picking up a hit in three of his four at-bats. He has now mustered multiple hits in three consecutive games for the ‘Bows. He also led the team with three runs, a new career high for him. After entering the series with a .250 batting average, Scott is up to .438.

Scott, now a sophomore, is looking to build on a campaign that saw him win the Big West Conference Freshman Fielder of the Year award. He was the only ‘Bow to start all 50 games of the 2019 season. He served as the leadoff hitter in each, finishing with a .291 batting average. He led the team in multiple categories: hits (59), triples (four), walks (25), stolen bases (6-for-10), runs scored (36), and at-bats (203).

Defensively, Scott made 37 starts in center field, spending the other 13 starts in left field. He committed just two errors throughout the year, en route to 106 putouts, three assists, and a .982 fielding percentage.

“That award was awesome. I got the award, celebrated for a couple days, then I focused my mind on this year. I want to be that player again this year, this time not as a freshman. But most importantly, I want to go to the postseason with my boys,” Scott said.

The Cypress, Texas, native is well positioned to build on his terrific freshman campaign. Through four games this season — all of which have featured Scott in the leadoff position — he is leading the team with seven runs scored. The next-highest tally in the category is Dustin Demeter with three. He is also tied with first basemen Alex Baeza for the team lead in hits with seven, and leads the team with two stolen bases on two attempts.

Scott’s day started early, once again notching a leadoff hit to get the Rainbow Warrior batting order going. He was later called out on a double play, but Demeter’s solo shot gave Hawaii the opening lead anyway. Scott got another chance in the third inning, with another single. He later stole second base, before advancing to third on a groundout. He soon scored his first run of the day on an RBI groundout.

His third hit came in the eighth inning, as a well-placed bunt gave him just enough time to reach first base. He later scored his third run on Kole Kaler’s two-RBI triple.

The teams play Game 3 of the series at Les Murakami Stadium at 1 p.m. Sunday.