Rainbow Wahine to work it out against Sea Warriors
Hawaii women's basketball coach Jim Bolla and his staff get the opportunity this afternoon to watch the Rainbow Wahine play against someone other than themselves.
The Wahine face the Hawaii Pacific Lady Sea Warriors today in an exhibition game at 4 p.m. at the Stan Sheriff Center.
"The good part is we're playing someone we don't see everyday in practice. By now everyone knows our plays and they cheat a step or two in practice," Bolla said.
"In an exhibition, you have to go out and play. This will kind of give us a true look."
The Wahine, with 11 returning players and three newcomers getting to know each other, have practiced for three weeks and have two more before opening the season Nov. 17.
The recruits are 5-foot-10 freshman guard/forward Megan Tinnin, 6-1 guard/forward Dita Liepkalne and 6-4 center Iwona Zagrobelna. A fourth recruit, freshman guard Leilani Galdones, is recovering from knee surgery and has yet to practice.
Bolla, an advocate of up-tempo basketball, wants to increase the percentage of those plays from the 60 percent the Wahine executed last year to 75 percent this season.
"I want to increase the number of 3s we shoot to at least 20 a game," Bolla said.
"If we get the easy layup in transition, that's great. Our second choice is a 3 and the third option is a jumper."
The Wahine have been practicing with a 20-second shot clock vs. 30 in a game to force them to go for the quick basket. If that doesn't happen, then Bolla wants the team to run through the offensive plays quickly.
"All three of our new kids can shoot the 3, as well as Pam (Tambini), Janevia (Taylor) and Dalia (Solia)," said Bolla.
The Lady Sea Warriors, preparing for their inaugural season, are coached by Liz O'Brien-Gorkowski, who was the Wahine director of basketball operations last year.
"We are looking to competing against someone new and we're looking for it to be a learning experience for our players," O'Brien-Gorkowski said.
"We want our post players to make moves because they are not big enough to just put the ball up and we want to execute our offense."
O'Brien-Gorkowski has four players from Hawaii on her roster. They are Constance DeCaires (Kailua), Jordan Tangonan (Kamehameha), Shannon Miyashiro (Roosevelt) and walk-on Mandy Llamedo (St. Francis), who will start practicing when the paperwork is complete.
Miyashiro, a 5-10 freshman, will start at a wing position and DeCaires, a 5-10 senior, gets the start at center.