New yokozuna headed for Hawaii
Sumo star Hakuho, who yesterday became the fourth non-Japanese sumo wrestler to be promoted to yokozuna, will make his first appearance at sumo's highest rank in the Hawaii Grand Sumo Tournament on June 9 at the Blaisdell Arena.
The Mongolian won his second consecutive tournament and third of his career on Sunday in the May Grand Tournament in Tokyo.
He is the 69th yokozuna in sumo history and the first to be promoted to the highest rank since Asashoryu was in 2003.
The Hawaii Grand Tournament will be held June 9-10, and will feature the top 40 sumotori from Japan. This will be the first professional sumo tournament in Hawaii since 1993.
Lojeski signs with Belgium team
Former Hawaii basketball guard Matt Lojeski has signed to play for Okapi Aalstar, a Belgium Club Team, next season.
A two-year starter at Hawaii, Lojeski led the team in scoring and assists the past season and was selected to the All-Western Athletic Conference second team. He started all 57 games at Hawaii and finished 18th on the school's all-time scoring list and 10th in career scoring average.
Okapi Aalstar plays in the Division I level of the Belgium league. Lojeski will join four other Americans on the team, including former Nebraska standout West Wilkinson, who was on the Cornhusker team that lost to Hawaii in the second round of the National Invitation Tournament in 2004.
HPU finishes third in west region
The Hawaii Pacific men's tennis team was ranked third in the final Intercollegiate Tennis Association West Region poll released yesterday.
In addition, Hendrik Bode was named the top singles player in the region after amassing a perfect 14-0 record in decided matches. He finished ranked 17th nationally in singles and 25th in doubles with Peter Raben.
The Sea Warriors finished with a 14-5 record and advanced to the NCAA National Tournament before losing to eventual champion Lynn University.
Twins sign Iolani grad Mopas
Ian Mopas, a left-handed pitcher who graduated from Iolani in 2005, signed with the Minnesota Twins yesterday and reported to the franchise's spring training facility in Fort Myers, Fla.
The Twins drafted Mopas in the 26th round of the 2005 draft. Mopas went to Golden West College in Huntington Beach, Calif. The Twins picked him again in 2006 in the 30th round as a "draft and follow," meaning the club retained the rights to sign him even though he returned to school, at Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo, Calif.
"Ian worked extremely hard over the last two years to warrant a pro contract and signing bonus and he knows there's plenty more hard work to put in the minors on his road to the major leagues," Twins area scout Dan Cox said. "He added some good weight and arm strength (since high school), developed confidence with successes against mainland players, experienced life away from the islands. All contributing factors that helped him make a smooth transition to pro ball."
HPU signs 2 basketball recruits
The Hawaii Pacific men's basketball team added one junior college transfer and another player out of high school to its 2007-08 roster.
Hamidou Coulibaly averaged four points and three rebounds last season at Ohlone College in California. Dennis Toliver, from Cesar Chavez High in Arizona, will also be a Sea Warrior next season.
Wahine volleyball clinic begins Sunday
The inaugural Wahine Volleyball Academy, with University of Hawaii coaching staff and current and former UH players, opens the first of its seven summer sessions Sunday at Manoa District Park.
The clinic is open to players ages 10-and-older, with customized training by position for all skill levels, and runs from 1 to 3 p.m.
Other sessions are scheduled for June 10, 17 and 24, July 29, and Aug. 5 and 19. The cost is $45 the day of the event, $40 through pre-registration and $150 for any four sessions. Pre-registration is encouraged to guarantee correct player-to-coach ratio and can be done at www.wahinevolleyballacademy.com. For more information, call 745-3385.