2007 ALL-STATE GIRLS VOLLEYBALL TEAM
DENNIS ODA / DODA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Kanani Herring picked up three state titles and three Star-Bulletin player of the year awards in three years. She is one of four Kamehameha players, along with coach Chris Blake, chosen to the All-State team.
Herring back for a third time
UH-bound Kamehameha senior tops the 2007 Fab 15 team of the state's best
STORY SUMMARY »
Every year, more and more players from Hawaii are landing in college programs both big and small. That's why the Star-Bulletin All-State Girls Volleyball selection process has evolved, as well.
This season, for the first time, the format is a Fab 15, rewarding not just a "first team" of six or seven players, but the best 15 across the state. Even at that, coaches and media had a tough time paring down their lists, particularly when there will probably be two to three dozen seniors from Hawaii who will be wearing college uniforms a year from now.
There was no doubt, though, about player of the year honors. For a third year in a row, Kamehameha's Kanani Herring was voted the state's best player. Her coach, Chris Blake, repeated as coach of the year.
DENNIS ODA / DODA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Kamehameha's Kanani Herring earned all-around praise, being called a once-in-a-decade player by Iolani coach Jenic Tumaneng.
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Sometimes, postseason accolades have little to do with team performance. This is not the case with Kamehameha Schools, gargantuan in talent, but unlike many Goliaths of sport, the Warriors won over fans not solely on physical prowess and skill.
Rather, Kamehameha won over state and volleyball purists across the nation with its heart. The Warriors, who secured their third state title in a row and finished No. 4 in the PrepVolleyball.com national rankings, landed four starters on the Star-Bulletin Fab 15 All-State Team.
Kanani Herring, their 5-foot-10 rocket launcher, earned the highest respect from coaches and media. She received the highest point total possible from all 12 voters and was named Star-Bulletin girls volleyball player of the year for a third consecutive season.
"She is somebody who comes along once in a decade. Even when she was a freshman, she was already good," said Iolani coach Jenic Tumaneng, referring to Herring's one season as a team manager.
Moanalua coach Tommy Lake agreed.
"Kanani just had too much, too much jump, too many shots, too much good passing and digging, too many talented teammates," he said. "She started three years and has three state championships."
Teammates Bekah Torres and Jordan Meredith followed Herring in the voting at Nos. 2 and 3, respectively. Warriors setter Caitlin Andrade was also voted to the Fab 15. The new format of the voting process reflects the tremendous versatility of players across the island. Herring, Torres and Meredith were successful not just as outside hitters or middle blockers, but at just about every position on the court.
"Bekah is right up there," Punahou coach Jim Iams said. "The number of times we've played them or watched them, she got a lot of big kills for them. She's a very good all-around player, good serve, good on the court and a clutch player. If Kanani didn't have it going, Bekah came through."
Kaleinani Kabalis was voted to the Fab 15 at No. 4. The 5-6 senior mastered every spot on the floor and led Moanalua to the Oahu Interscholastic Association Red Conference crown. Her dangerous serve was matched by her outstanding swing, powerful enough to dismantle defenses even when she hit from the back row.
Leinani Keanini, Iolani's prolific and persistent outside hitter, shared the No. 4 spot with Kabalis. Coaches and media recognized her talent as one of the state's top hitters, as well as her all-around skills. She had 13 kills in a mid-season win over Kamehameha — the only loss of the season for the eventual state champion.
Punahou's Sydney Yogi and Anuhea Keanini were also selected to the Fab 15. Yogi drew raves from coaches as the state's best libero, even satisfying the demands of Iams -- a former college and Olympic coach -- to a healthy extent.
Keanini, only a junior, was a relentless machine gun who never surrendered to taller opposition.
Chanteal Satele, Word of Life's soft-spoken anchor, led the Firebrands on a run into the state championships and the highest ranking of a D-II player on our list.
Sarah Palmer, the superb 5-11 sophomore from Hawaii Baptist, was right behind. Palmer's persistence at the net helped the small, spirited school soar to the D-II state championship, ending a frustrating era of highly respectable, yet early exits in D-I play.
Another underclassman, Iolani middle blocker Chelsea Hardin, landed at No. 10 in the Fab 15. The athletic 5-11 junior was one of only three middles voted to the team.
Kahuku rose from a murky start and finished strong thanks in part to senior slammer Leilani Tafuna. The four-year letterman was one of the most powerful outside hitters in the state, drawing plenty of defensive attention throughout the season. She sparked Kahuku to a second-place finish in the OIA.
Roosevelt's steady season was reliant on the play of Meleana Yamashiro and Emily Maeda. Yamashiro's pinpoint serving and multi-position success helped the Rough Riders qualify for the state tournament again. Maeda's performance as a hitter was matched by her defense at the net and in the back row.
Another D-II standout, Brennan Clark of University High, was recognized by voters. At 5-8, she was one of the ILH's top outside hitters, posting big numbers against D-I schools, as well.
Voters were divided about their selection for coach of the year honors. In the end, Kamehameha's Chris Blake outpointed Iolani's Jenic Tumaneng by a narrow 25-23 margin.
"He's done a great job keeping the kids playing to the level they should. It's a luxury to have those kinds of athletes, but it's important to keep them focused and hungry, and he did a great job," Tumaneng said.
Alex Akana, Kamehameha, 5-11, MB, Jr.
Darcie Anderson, Roosevelt, 5-5, S, Sr.
Alex Bolduc, Seabury Hall, 5-10, OH, Sr.
Alyssalyn Buyuan, Waiakea, 5-5, OH, So.
Kelly Chang, Hawaii Baptist, 5-4, L, Jr.
Erika Cushnie, Hawaii Prep, 5-9, MB, So.
Allie Elliazar, Mililiani, 5-6, OH, Jr.
Wikolia Enos, Kamehameha-Hawaii, 5-8, OPP/MB, Sr.
Taiana Faafiti-Samuseva, Farrington, 5-10, OH
Lani Fonua, Punahou, 5-10, MB, Jr.
Mahina Haina, Iolani, 5-11, MB, So.
Chelbie-Ann Hanohano, St. Joseph, 5-6, OH, Sr.
Diana Hiromoto, Punahou, 5-6, L, Sr.
Kuulei Kabalis, Kamehameha-Hawaii, 5-6, S/OH, Jr.
Courtney Kamai-Vincent, Waiakea, 5-10, OPP, Sr.
Pihana Kea, Punahou, 5-7, S, Jr.
Jamaika Lorenzo, Honokaa, 5-10, MB, Sr.
Carsen Mata, Moanalua, 5-6, OH/S, So.
Yacine Meyer, Seabury Hall, 5-8, OH, Sr.
Lauren Minkel, Iolani, 5-9, OH, Sr.
Keisha Miura, Hawaii Baptist, 5-6, S, Sr.
Makamae Namahoe, Hilo, 5-11, MB/OH, So.
C'era Oliveira, Hawaii Baptist, 5-6, OH, So.
Haililani Pokipala, Sacred Hearts, 5-9, OH, Sr.
Kaimi Rocha, Seabury Hall, 5-10, OH, Sr.
Kaipo Rocha, Seabury Hall, 5-10, MB, Sr.
Tati Santiago, Kamehameha, 5-8, OPP/S, Sr.
Dreanne Shaw, Kamehameha-Maui, 5-11, OH, Sr.
Candace Soares, Mililani, 5-8, MB, Jr.
Tami Taga, Roosevelt, 5-3, L, Sr.
Jacie Tagavilla, Roosevelt, 5-10, MB, Sr.
Kelsy Takashima, Molokai, 5-11, MB, Sr.
Pearly Togiai, McKinley, 5-7, MB, Sr.
Jana Tokuhama, Iolani, 5-4, L, Jr.
Brenda Walker, McKinley, 5-5, OH, So.
Mali'e Yoon, Iolani, 5-8, S, So.
Cassidee Young, Kamehameha, 5-8, L, Sr.