Star-Bulletin Sports

Wednesday, January 9, 2002


Mililani’s Rashaun Broadus hopes to earn an Oahu Interscholastic Association title for the Trojans.

A nice shot

Broadus excels despite taking on
broader responsibilities as the
Trojans shoot for the OIA title

By Jason Kaneshiro

RASHAUN Broadus knows his role with the Mililani basketball team.

Some players specialize in grabbing rebounds, others relish playing tenacious defense. Broadus is simply a scorer.

"My own personal goal is averaging 20 (points) and trying to lead my team every game," Broadus said.

The 5-foot-11 shooting guard began the season on the right track by posting big numbers in the Trojans' first two Oahu Interscholastic Association West Division victories. He opened his senior season by scoring 22 points against Kapolei and 19 against Waianae.

"He gets us 20 a game, and I told him 'You can get 30 a game, as long as you take good shots and shoot a good percentage, and give your teammates some opportunities to score,' " Mililani coach Mike Coito said. "He's a special player, so we just let him go."

Broadus thrives in Coito's free-wheeling, full-court style of offense, and the Trojans will need him to continue lighting up scoreboards for them to contend for the division and league championships.

"Everybody wants to make it to the top, state title and OIA championship," Broadus said. "But all we're thinking about is getting past every game one step at a time."

The Trojans, who advanced to the OIA championship game last year, endured a rocky preseason schedule last month. But Broadus served notice that he would be a player to watch by scoring 21 points against nationally-ranked Montrose Christian (Rockville, Md.) in the first round of the Iolani Prep Classic.

But with the stats comes increased attention from opposing defenses.

"Most teams are gunning for me now," Broadus said. "When I come to the game it feels good that everybody knows what I can do and play harder. It just makes me play harder when I play against them. I like the challenge."

Broadus, a second-team Star-Bulletin all-state selection last year, can fill up the basket from outside, but he does most of his damage by using his quickness to break down defenders and drive to the hole.

"He gets so much separation off his first move," Coito said. "He leaves the defender there and he's taking a couple more dribbles. Some guys work so hard just to get a little bit open, but he can get open so quick."

Broadus' skills got him noticed at basketball camps in Los Angeles last summer. He impressed Western Washington coaches enough that they offered him a scholarship, which he recently accepted. Broadus, who was born in Seattle, will join a Western Washington program that went 27-4 last season and advanced to the NCAA Division II semifinals.

But before he becomes a Viking, Broadus hopes to help lead Mililani to the OIA title. The Trojans are shooting to become the first OIA West team to win the league crown since 1990, when Moanalua won the championship.

While Broadus carries the scoring load, the Trojans can turn to senior post players Trey Brown and Kaipo Patoc for points and rebounds. Senior point guard Gary Deliz is the team's primary ball handler and distributor.

"(Brown) is a big center, but nobody knows he can shoot," Broadus said. "And Kaipo's strong underneath in the post, so all we have to do is give it to him, and most of the time he'll make it."

Missing from the Mililani lineup this season is Broadus' brother, William, who graduated last year. The brothers had played together throughout a childhood spent on the move. The Broadus family lived in Washington, Germany, Kansas, Texas and California before settling in Hawaii four years ago.

And not having his brother around has forced Broadus to look to the basket even more than last year when he averaged 15 points per game.

"I knew it would be a little bit harder since my brother's gone, and I knew the team was going to be dependent on me for a lot of the shots this year," Broadus said. "He was my go-to guy. Every time I see him, I give it to him because I know most of the time he'll score. We both know how we play and what we can do and can take advantage of that."

And now that he's established himself as the Trojans' primary scorer, even his coaches and teammates find themselves admiring Broadus' ability to fulfill his role.

"I have to try not to jump up and cheer sometimes," Coito admitted. "I enjoy watching him play. He's kind of surprising with the things he does."

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