H A W A I I _ S P O R T S


Monday, November 15, 1999

Making their point

Hawaii received eight points in the ESPN/USA Today coaches poll and four in the Associated Press Top 25. It's not as if the Rainbows will crack the top 25 in the major polls anytime soon, but any recognition is good for a program that finished last in the BCS ratings in 1998.

"To me, it's very nice to be getting top-25 votes from anyone," Jones said. "These kids deserve the recognition because what they've accomplished on the field is great. We've just got to keep winning and let that other stuff just take care of itself."

Hawaii has been in the Fox Sports top-40 poll off and on all season and have been as highly rated as No. 52 in the Scripps-Howard poll.

"I thought we would be getting some votes sooner than this," UH running back Avion Weaver said. "That loss to USC hurt us."

Inside the numbers

Wideout Dwight Carter remained in the top 20 in two national categories as he closes in on a pair of prominent UH receiving marks.

Carter has 63 catches for 941 yards. His average of 94.1 yards a game is 17th nationally. He is No. 19 in receptions, averaging 6.3 catches a game.

The senior needs only four more catches to break the single-season mark of 66 set by Walter Murray in 1985. Chris Roscoe set the season mark in yards with 1,043 (47 receptions) in 1989.

"It would be great to break those records," Carter said. "But the main thing is, we're winning."

Quarterback Dan Robinson has the highest individual ranking on the team. He is rated No. 11 in total offense, averaging 298.7 yards a game. The Rainbows are 10th in the nation in passing offense with a 316-yard average.

"That's great and all," Robinson said. "But the only stat that really matters is wins and losses."

Better this time

The last time Hawaii found itself in OT, Northeastern Louisiana beat the Rainbows on the old hook-and-ladder, a symbolic loss for the Fred vonAppen era.

And while many of the same players took part in that 23-20 defeat two years ago, the difference between now and then can be summed up in two words - Coach Jones.

His play-calling in the second overtime period led to a 9-yard touchdown pass from Robinson to slotback Craig Stutzmann that secured the 31-24 victory over Fresno State. Hawaii is now 1-1 in overtime games.

Turnover this

Hawaii moved up 40 spots to a tie for 49th in the nation in turnover margin at plus .10 a game.

Part of the reason for that turnaround is the opportunistic UH defense that took advantage of four lost fumbles, including three by Fresno State running back Derrick Ward.

Injury update

Backup safety Phil Austin pulled his hamstring and will be out for the remainder of the regular season. He is the only major injury listed by the trainers. Defensive lineman Matt Elam suffered a stress fracture last week and is also out for at least a month.

By Paul Arnett

Wahine Notebook

Wahine get
good workout

The Hawaii women's basketball team played an exhibition game Saturday against a local men's team augmented by two familiar faces, former Rainbow volleyball star Aaron Wilton and former Wahine standout Nani Cockett..

The men had enough height to give the Wahine problems on the boards. They showed quickness and anticipation learned from many years of pounding the hardwood. The men played zone, man-to-man, pressed at times, in general mixed it up at their discretion to provide the Wahine with a good test.

National women's teams traveling through Hawaii want too much money for UH to consider hosting one for an exhibition so Saturday's contest, played under game conditions, was beneficial for the UH players.

The Wahine wore their game uniforms, sat on their bench and went through the pregame warmups the same way the will Friday when they play Tennessee Tech in the opener of the Hawaiian Regent Classic at 3 p.m. in the Stan Sheriff Center. A half dozen local collegiate officials rotated working the exhibition.

"We wanted it to be game like as possible," UH head coach Vince Goo said. "We worried about trying to get into our rotation. We'd like to know how many minutes they can go before they might need a break. Then again, we need to think about the media time outs (there were none Saturday, but occur about every four minutes during a regular game).

"I even got to work on the referees a little bit early. They were letting Nani Cockett get away with everything. I try to get in my practice."

The starting five was Hedy Liu at center, Aina Kohler and Kylie Galloway at the wings, Raylene Howard at shooting guard and Kyla Evers at point guard. Rotating in were Christen Roper at center, Maj Forsberg at point guard and Crystal Lee at the wing.

"We tried to distribute our shots but rushed our shots, good shot, early, good shots. In the second half they settle down a little bit, got under control offensively and knocked the shots down," Goo said.

The Wahine struggled a bit with the press, but became successful breaking it when they started making crisp, correct passes. Their floor communication also could stand some improvement.

The men took the first half, 39-24, but the Wahine won the second half, 37-31, in part because they closed out better on defense. Galloway scored 12 points in the first half, Liu had 10 in the second half.

"I thought we did some things we wanted to do," said Howard. "We wanted to limit the turnovers and keep possession of the ball. We wanted to take good shots and begin to work together as a cohesive unit. We're still a week off from being really prepared."

Galloway on herself

Galloway sat out last season and gave birth to her son Kyrin in July. As for her conditioning, she says she's about 85 to 90 percent of where she should be.

"Right now I'm a little frustrated because I'm not where I was two years ago. I'm forcing things a bit and not letting the game come to me," she said.

"I'm not there yet as far as game mentality. I'm not in shape as far as being prepared to play a game, to make decisions. It's new to me again."

Wahine sign guard

The signing of Melanie Croser, a 5-foot-7 point guard from Canberra, Australia, to national letter of intent concludes the Wahine recruiting effort for the early signing period.

Croser graduated from high school last November, and wanted very much to sign with Hawaii for this season.

Goo also was interested, but by the time Croser had sent tapes to the UH coaches, the Wahine, for the first time in many years, did not have any scholarships left.

She also had an offer for a full ride last year from the University of Toledo, but opted to stay home this year and play as an amateur in the semi-pro Australian Basketball Association, the No. 2 league in Australia.

Croser played for the Gold Coast Warriors last season and will compete for the Brisbane team this spring.

"Melanie has good quickness, is an outstanding 3-point shooter and is a good passer," Goo said. "Her quickness from stop to go is very close to BJ (Itoman)."

The Wahine have two scholarship remaining for the 2000-2001 season. Goo expects to be recruiting a wing player and a post player next spring.

Site change

The Wahine return to Klum Gym Dec. 10 for the opening day of the Hawaii Invitational. The Stan Sheriff Center is the site of an NCAA volleyball regional that night.

Oregon State plays Wichita State at 1 p.m. that day followed by the Wahine against Wisconsin-Milwaukee at 3 p.m. Fans won't have to worry about peeling paint chips falling on them because Klum has been repainted inside.

By Al Chase

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