State tourneys in 3 sportsBy Cindy Luis
It's been an amazing run for Punahou boys' volleyball. In the 30 previous state championships, the Buffanblu have come out victors 22 times, including the last five.
The chance at No. 23 looks good on paper. Punahou finished the regular season 14-0 and heads into this week's Nissan Boys State Championship as the top seed.
"We're riding shotgun into this and trying to hold,'' Punahou coach Scott Rigg said last night. "There's a lot of good teams in this tournament, maybe five or six who have a legitimate shot."
Not since 1979 has a team other than Punahou or Kamehameha won the state title. The Warriors broke up the Buffanblu's domination of the past two decades with victories in 1991 and '93.
But no player in this year's 12-team tournament was even born the last time a non-ILH school was champion. Robin Goo's Roosevelt team closed out the 1970s with three straight banners (1977-79).
Punahou has just one starter back from last year's championship team -- senior hitter Parker Smith, a member of the U.S. national youth team last summer. But Smith is surrounded by four seniors who have bided their time for a chance to play for the championship.
It all starts tomorrow with pool play at Waiakea High and Afook-Chinen Civic Auditorium. Punahou is the top seed in Pool A, No. 2 Pearl City (12-1), the top seed in Pool B, No. 3 Hilo (13-1) heads Pool C, and No. 4 Seabury Hall (14-0) heads Pool D.
The final is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Waiakea.
Bowling on KauaiThe Hawaiian Airlines State Bowling Championships also get underway tomorrow at Lihue Lanes on Kauai.
The boys' opening-round sessions are at 8 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. tomorrow while the girls' sessions are at 11:15 a.m. an 5:45 p.m.
The final round for the boys begins at 8 a.m. Friday. The final round for the girls starts at 11:15.
Aiea is the defending boys' champion. Hilo won last year's girls' title.
Cross country on MauiThe Honolulu Marathon State Cross Country Championships are scheduled Friday at the Dunes at Maui Lani Golf Course in Kahului.
The boys' races starts at 9 a.m. followed by the girls' at 9:45 a.m. Radford won the boys. title last year. Iolani won the girls' crown.
For the first time in four years a new girls' champion will be crowned. Punahou's Eri Macdonald finished her career last season with her fourth consecutive title. Radford junior James Googe won the boys' title last year.