GIRLS STATE VOLLEYBALL
GEORGE F. LEE / GLEE@STARBULLETIN.COM
The Warriors' Dreanne Shaw tried to block a kill attempt by Moanalua's Kaleinani Kabalis during last night's match. Shaw led the Warriors with five kills. CLICK FOR LARGE
Menehunes roll over Warriors and into the semifinal round
Volleyball: Moanalua advances to face Kamehameha in the semifinal round
The Moanalua Menehunes aren't anxious anymore, but they sure are hungry.
Still mindful of last week's loss in the Oahu Interscholastic Association finals, Moanalua swept Kamehameha-Maui 25-22, 25-12 last night in the Division I quarterfinals of the New City Nissan/Hawaii High School Athletic Association Girls Volleyball State Championships.
A tense crowd at Kekuhaupio Gym saw Moanalua (15-2) pull away with solid serving and a good measure of composure in the first set. By the second game, the Menehunes were on a roll against the struggling Warriors.
Senior Brianna Amian led Moanalua with 10 kills and a roof. Kaleinani Kabalis tallied five kills and a roof, and Melanie Manutai had five kills and an ace. Moanalua had struggled past Aiea in the opening round on Monday.
Coach Thomas Lake's squad will play Kamehameha in tonight's semifinals.
"We played really good tonight compared to last night," Amian said. "We really want to play Kamehameha-Kapalama. We talked to each other. We knew we had to win this game."
Sophomore setter Deena DelaCruz had a team-high seven assists to go with two aces.
"She's a new setter up from the JV," Amian said of DelaCruz, who helped lead the Menehunes to the Oahu Interscholastic Association junior varsity title.
"She knows how to keep her head after a mistake. She's always been like that, even last year," Amian said.
In all, Moanalua had six aces to just one for Kamehameha-Maui, champion of the Maui Interscholastic League. Mistakes haunted both teams early on, but Moanalua turned the tide midway through Game 1, while KS-Maui continued to draw whistles for double contacts and lifts.
Dreanne Shaw, a 5-foot-11 junior, led Kamehameha-Maui (11-2) with five kills and a match-high three roofs. Nicole Smith, a senior, added four kills and a roof.
Poise kept Moanalua together through the early going, but Kamehameha-Maui couldn't keep up after committing a number of unforced errors.
"I disagreed with half the calls, but that's not why we lost. We, as a team, didn't show up," Warriors coach Kathy Beard said. "That's really what it came down to."
Her team, with six seniors, took the loss hard.
"They worked really hard. We had to build two brand-new setters," Beard noted.
"We're in it to win it, so we're looking to finish in fifth place," she added.
Moanalua took an early lead in Game 1 before Kamehameha-Maui rallied. The Warriors took a 15-14 lead after consecutive errors by Moanalua, but Lake called a timeout.
The break and a talk did the trick as Moanalua went on an 8-2 run to seize the lead. An ace by DelaCruz increased Moanalua's lead to 24-19.
Kamehameha-Maui pulled within 24-22 after three consecutive errors by Moanalua, but another lift call against the Warriors ended the game.
Moanalua had just six kills in Game 1, but four aces came in handy.
The Menehunes zoomed to an 11-3 lead in Game 2 and never looked back. A kill by Shaw brought the Warriors within 17-11, but they got no closer the rest of the way.
Kamehameha 2, Kahuku 0
The top-seeded, defending state champion Warriors fired away from every possible angle to dominate Kahuku in a 25-11, 25-17 victory.
Despite a 12-day layoff, the Interscholastic League of Honolulu champions were nearly flawless against a game Red Raider squad.
Junior Kanani Herring pounded 11 kills, and classmate Bekah Torres had eight kills and three of her team's five service aces. Jordan Meredith, another junior, also had eight kills.
"We have to look to tomorrow's game and not look past that, just one game at a time," Torres said.
Senior setter Kealohilani Kea was on target with sets of all kinds for 31 assists. Logan Keala chipped in with two aces and three kills for Kamehameha (18-1).
Shanlie Kaulula'au led Kahuku (12-5) with three kills.
"We tried to bring our whole defense in, but every free ball, they took advantage of," Kahuku coach Mona Ah-Hoy said. "They are so strong. It's hard to focus on one, then they're blasting on the other side. It's hard to key on one player. All of them can hit."
Warriors coach Chris Blake was pleased, but not satisfied.
"We served well to force Kahuku into bad situations, and we played pretty good 'D', but there are small, little things we need to execute," he said. "Little passing breakdowns, some blocking errors."
Kahuku kept it close in Game 2, taking an 8-7 lead after a hitting error by Torres. The Warriors responded with a 5-0 run and maintained a small lead. McZeen Ale's kill brought the Red Raiders within 17-15, but the Warriors again went on a roll to put the match away.
"We played them in the beginning of the season," Blake said of Kahuku. "They've come a long way since then. They play with heart. We're very fortunate to come out with a win."
Ah-Hoy's young team never quite found its rhythm.
"We could tell in the warmups that we were in trouble. We were flat-footed," she said. "Kamehameha was very sharp. We took a whole step down from last night."
The veteran coach isn't quite ready to crown Kamehameha champion yet.
"I know it's gonna be a good one tomorrow with Moanalua," she said.
Aiea 2, Kealakehe 1
In a consolation-bracket match, Aiea defeated Kealakehe 18-25, 25-22, 27-25.
Na Alii (13-3) play in the consolation championship match tomorrow against McKinley.
Kealakehe ended its season with a 10-8 record