Double the summer fun for Kuehus
THERE was Summer School, Summer Rental, One Crazy Summer, Summer of Sam, I Know What You Did Last Summer (and I Still Know What You Did Last Summer), It Was a Short Summer, Charlie Brown, The Endless Summer and, of course, Suddenly, Last Summer.
Now we just need a title for the great adventure Punahou's Kuehu sisters are having in the summer of 2006.
Star-Bulletin girls basketball state player of the year Shawna-Lei is playing with an elite Nike-sponsored club team out of California.
Shaena-Lyn is in a cast almost up to her elbow (at least now it's easy to tell them apart).
Now that is a how-I-spent-my-summer story waiting to be told.
TIME FOR SOME fun: So you broke her arm?
"I wasn't even there!" Shawna-Lei said.
And then they laughed.
Well, technically, she was in the vicinity. It happened, of course, playing basketball. The two-time-state-champion twins were on the mainland with a Hawaii team that finished second in its bracket at a big (160-something teams) Nike tournament. Shaena was doing what she does, hustling, contesting, defending, rebounding, when she broke a pinkie.
Wait. Pinkie? A whole cast? Timmy Chang broke his pinkie and he just had some foam and a little tape!
"I woke up and said, 'What? Is this supposed to be on my hand?' " Shaena-Lyn said.
She's right. What a way to wake up.
At least she can laugh about it now.
Yes, they had put her under. Minor surgery. They put a cast on her arm when she was asleep. Don't worry. She was just at a clinic, dribbling with her other hand.
"She's tough," Punahou coach Mike Taylor said.
Meanwhile, her twin sister is still playing, this summer. A team called the "California Storms" had come to Hawaii earlier for a few exhibitions. While the twins were in Oregon for the tournament, Taylor got an e-mail.
Would Shawna-Lei join the top California team for some summer barnstorming?
She's already played with the team at a top tournament in Chicago recently and "did really well," Taylor said.
Her California coach reported that Shawna-Lei had "a good strong following of coaches up there," Taylor said.
Yesterday was the first day that college coaches were allowed to call.
"We've gotten a few calls this morning," Taylor said.
Now, Shawna-Lei -- who scored 37 points in the state championship game -- is headed for an elite camp in California on Saturday. And then it's back with her California Nike-club team to Georgia for a Nike tournament filled with a field of 21 of the best "select" teams in the country.
Now that's a summer adventure to remember.
SO, IS IT true what they say about twins? The secret languages, the knowing looks, the unbroken bonds, the unspoken closeness?
"I don't know," Shawna-Lei said, looking at her sister.
"Maybe," Shaena-Lyn said, looking back.
What kind of question is that?
But Taylor, the Star-Bulletin's coach of the year -- how could he miss? -- said there is something there.
"Sometimes it seems like there's another sense," he said.
"Certain passes will just go," when it looked like there was nothing there, he said.
"They're in constant communication on and off the court," he said.
So now here they are, the rest of this summer. One in a cast, the other -- literally -- going coast to coast. Will it be tough being separated, being thousands of miles apart, while Shawna-Lei is on the mainland at yet another tournament, splitting the twins?
"No," Shaena-Lyn said. "It's going to be easy."
And then they laughed.