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

Notebook

Thursday, November 16, 2000

SMALL COLLEGE NOTEBOOK

HPU out to
prove something

Hawaii Pacific women's volleyball coach Tita Ahuna and her players say they are prepared for any team they face in this week's NCAA Division II Pacific Regional. But they definitely have some preferences as to who they'd like to play.

The Sea Warriors would enjoy the opportunity to match up against the two highest-seeded teams in the regional other than themselves.

The undefeated and national No. 1 Sea Warriors (23-0) are the second seed in the regional, which started today and runs through Saturday at the Eagles' Nest gymnasium on the campus of Cal State Los Angeles. They left yesterday morning and were to head straight to the gym for practice when they got off the plane.

The other teams in the single-elimination tournament are: top seed and host Cal State L.A. (national No. 2), third seed Cal State Bakersfield (15), fourth seed Cal State San Bernardino (19), fifth seed Seattle Pacific and sixth seed UC San Diego.

As the second seed, the Sea Warriors received a bye and will play the winner of today's CS Bakersfield-UC San Diego match tomorrow. Cal State Los Angeles also received a bye and will play the winner of today's CS San Bernardino-Seattle Pacific contest tomorrow.

Last year, HPU was also top-ranked and favored to repeat as national champion. The Sea Warriors were eliminated by Bakersfield.

"We definitely want to meet up with Bakersfield because of the revenge factor," Ahuna said. "We're going to be ready whoever the opponent is. After what happened last year, we know that we don't want history to repeat itself."

If the Sea Warriors win tomorrow and get into Saturday's regional final, they also would welcome the challenge of facing the other undefeated team in Division II, CS Los Angeles (30-0).

"They (regional voting committee) did us a favor by ranking us No. 2," Ahuna said. "We know how they've graded the matchup (against CS L.A.) on paper, and we'd like to meet them and prove to everyone that we're the best team out there on the court."

Maui Invitational on tap

The Maui Invitational hosted by Chaminade, one of college basketball's premiere tournaments, begins next Monday and runs through Wednesday. Some of the top teams in the nation will again descend upon the Lahaina Civic Center, including former national champion and current No. 1-ranked Arizona.

The Silverswords are the lone Division II participants. Rounding out the field are No. 6 Maryland, No. 8 Illinois, No. 13 Connecticut, former national champs Louisville, Nevada-Las Vegas, and Dayton.

Chaminade is coming off a strong exhibition win over Yonsei University of Korea last Saturday. The Silverswords likely have their toughest test of the year in their first-round matchup against the top-ranked Wildcats in the tournament's opening game on Monday at 9 a.m.

First-year Silverswords head coach Aaron Griess and his players are looking forward to the challenge.

"We consider this a great opportunity for us and we're going to go in like we have nothing to lose," Griess said. "This tournament and the teams in it can really help us improve for when we settle in to our conference schedule."

Water polo tournament here

The Silverswords will also play hosts for the Western Water Polo Association Championships, starting tomorrow and running through Sunday, at the Kamehameha Schools' pool . The winner of the eight-team tournament receives the WWPA's lone bid to the NCAA championships.

Eighth-seeded Chaminade faces a tough opponent right off in top-seeded UC San Diego.


By Brandon Lee
Special to the Star-Bulletin


RAINBOWS PLAYBOOK

vs. Louisville

Bullet Tip-off: 8 p.m. tomorrow, Stan Sheriff Center.

Bullet Coaches: Louisville: Denny Crum (30th year, 663-276, 2 national championships). Hawaii: Riley Wallace (13th year at Hawaii, 199-184; 15th overall, 214-211).

Bullet Season: First game for both teams. Louisville was 19-12 last year. Hawaii was 17-12 last year. (Individual statistics from last season are below).

Bullet Series: Louisville is 2-0 against Hawaii. In the most recent meeting, the Cardinals beat the Rainbows, 95-82, in the championship of the 1993 Rainbow Classic.

Bullet Probable starters: Louisville: F Ellis Myles (6-8, 250, Fr.), F Luke Whitehead (6-7, 215, Fr.), C Hajj Turner (6-8, 215, Jr.; 1.0 pts., 0.6 reb.), G Marques Maybin (6-3, 185, Sr.; 14.7 pts., 2.7 reb.), G Reece Gaines (6-6, 190, So.; 9.1 pts., 3.3 reb.). Hawaii: F Nerijus Puida (6-5, 195, Sr.; 6.7 pts., 4.3 reb.), F Troy Ostler (6-10, 205, Sr.; 12.3 pts., 7.0 reb.), C Haim Shimonovic (6-10, 245, Fr.), G Ricky Terrell (6-2, 195, Jr.), G Predrag Savovic (6-6, 225, Jr.; 12.5 pts., 3.5 reb.).

Bullet Keys: Louisville's experienced backcourt vs. Hawaii's unproven point guard situation. ... Hawaii's deep frontcourt vs. Louisville's young but athletic forwards and post players. ... Louisville's mystique vs. Hawaii's homecourt advantage. ... Can Hawaii's defense contain Maybin? ... Will a third scorer emerge in support of Ostler and Savovic?

Bullet Also of note: Hawaii is 9-4 in season openers under Wallace, and 10-3 overall in home openers. ... This is the 26th time in Crum's 30 seasons as Louisville coach that the Cardinals open on the road. ... Louisville is 55-30 all-time in openers. ... The Cardinals are 18th among all NCAA schools with 1375 victories. ... Louisville has also lost 739 games in its 86 seasons.

Bullet On the air: Radio: Rainbow Sports Radio (KCCN 1420-AM) live. Television: KFVE (Channel 5) live.

Bullet Tickets: $14 all lower level, $10 upper (adult), $8 student section, $7 upper (student). Available at Stan Sheriff Center box office.


Dave Reardon, Star-Bulletin


WAHINE PLAYBOOK

Hawaiian Regent Classic

Bullet Teams: Hawaii Wahine, Northern Arizona Lumberjacks, Pepperdine Waves, Western Kentucky Lady Toppers.

Bullet Schedule: At the Stan Sheriff Center. Tomorrow: Pepperdine vs. Western Kentucky, 2:30 p.m.; Hawaii vs. Northern Arizona, 5 p.m. Saturday: Western Kentucky vs. Northern Arizona, 1 p.m.; Hawaii vs. Pepperdine, 3 p.m. Sunday: Northern Arizona vs. Pepperdine, 5 p.m.; Hawaii vs. Western Kentucky, 7 p.m.

Bullet Coaches: Hawaii: Vince Goo, 14th season (261-116, .692). Northern Arizona: Meg Sanders, 5th season (64-49, .566). Pepperdine: Mark Trakh, 8th season (117-83, .585). Western Kentucky, Steve Small, 4th season (69-26, .726).

Bullet Season: All four teams open the season in this tournament.

Bullet Series: Hawaii's leads the series with Northern Arizona, 5-0, and Pepperdine, 5-3, but has lost both games with Western Kentucky.

Bullet Keys: All the visiting teams have had the opportunity to work out the kinks in two exhibition games. The Wahine will have to meld four newcomers and a redshirt freshman with seven veterans quickly to be competitive against a tournament field that is above average ... Northern Arizona returns all five starters, West Coast Conference defending champion Pepperdine has four starters back and Western Kentucky has three starters and eight letter winners returning ... Hawaii should be solid off the bench and it will be interesting to see what kind of rotation the UH coaches develop early in the season.

Bullet Top players: All statistics are from the 1999-2000 season. Hawaii: Kylie Galloway, 6-0 senior forward (13.7 points and 4.9 rebounds a game); Dainora Puida, 6-4 senior center (6.7 ppg, 4.4 rpg), and Crystal Lee, 5-11 senior forward (4.1 ppg, 1.9 rpg). Northern Arizona: Kara Leinhenz, 5-8 junior guard and team MVP as a sophomore (11.0 ppg); Kristi Harkey, 5-7 senior guard, led Lumberjacks in assists, and Lindsey Foster, 5-9 sophomore guard,led team in 3-point accuracy and steals. Pepperdine: Rasheeda Clark, 5-10 senior guard (15.5 ppg, 3.5 assists a game); Damaris Hinojosa, 5-10 sophomore guard (14.0 ppg), and Nesha Thomas, 5-11 senior forward (3.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg). Western Kentucky: ShaRae Mansfield, 6-2 senior forward and All-American candidate (18.5 ppg, 10.6 rpg) and Natalie Powers, 5-11 junior guard (10.5 ppg).

Bullet Also of note: Wahine forward Natasja Allen and Lumberjacks guard Lindsey Foster were teammates for three years at South Kitsap High School in Port Orchard, Wash. ... ShaRae Mansfield was named the Sun Belt Conference Preseason Player of the Year by the league's coaches. ... Northern Arizona lost to China's National Team, 71-63, and beat Cassovia Bardejov (Slovakia), 66-64, in preseason exhibition games. ... Pepperdine beat Cassovia Bardejov, 95-83, and smashed Love & Basketball AAU, 116-68. ... Western Kentucky defeated the Nashville All-Stars, 95-61, and the Premier All-Stars, 88-73. ... The Wahine game at Nevada, Feb. 4, will be shown on Fox Sports Net as a regional game.

Bullet On the air: Radio: Hawaii-Western Kentucky live on KCCN (1420 AM). Television: Hawaii-Northern Arizona and Hawaii-Western Kentucky live on KFVE TV (Channel 5).

Bullet Internet: http//uhathletics.hawaii.edu/Sportslive/listen.html when KCCN broadcasts.

Bullet Tickets: Lower level, $8 adults, $6 Super Rooter UH students. Upper level, $6 adults, $5 senior citizens (65 and over), $4 students 4-18, UH students with valid ID. Available at Stan Sheriff Center, Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. or by calling Ticket Plus, 526-4400. Tickets can be purchased at Ticket Plus outlets, including Foodland (except School St. location) and Sack 'N Save stores. The box office remains open for weekday games and opens two hours prior to Saturday games. $3 parking charge.


Al Chase, Star-Bulletin



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