HIGH SCHOOL VOLLEYBALL
FL MORRIS / FMORRIS@STARBULLETIN.COM
Kamehameha's Caitlin Andrade tried to block a shot by Kylee Maneja of Sacred Hearts in the Warriors' sweep yesterday.
Kamehameha sneaks past Sacred Hearts
It wasn't exactly a feast, but No. 1 Kamehameha made a satisfying afternoon snack out of visiting Sacred Hearts.
Taylor Akana smacked six kills to lead the Warriors over the seventh-ranked Lancers 25-20, 25-19 before 300 fans at Kekuhaupio Gym. The three-time defending state champion Warriors (2-0) got 19 assists and two service aces from Fab 15 All-State setter Caitlin Andrade. Middle hitter Alex Akana added four kills, three blocks and an ace as Kamehameha withstood a strong comeback try by the visitors.
"Definitely not one of our best matches," Kamehameha coach Chris Blake said. "We're pleased with the outcome but not pleased with the performance. A lot of it had to do with Sacred Hearts. We were chasing them all second game. They're very scrappy defensively and we didn't do our best job in transition."
Kylee Maneja had eight kills and three blocks to pace the resilient Lancers (1-1). Macy Mitravich added six kills and two digs. Kamehameha limited the visitors to .015 hitting in the first game and .167 in the second.
"It's more psychological, learning to believe that they can play with anybody," Sacred Hearts coach Derwin Tsutsui said. "When you play these kinds of teams, you pretty much gotta be 100 percent."
Kamehameha's serving was a key advantage. The Warriors had four of their five aces in the second game, overcoming a relentless Lancer defense.
"We did well bouncing back from our misplays and we kept pursuing," Andrade said.
With 10 new additions to the roster, the Warriors occasionally lacked the kind of execution they had in recent years -- when four all-state players starred.
"It takes a while, working on our sets and timing," Andrade said. "We had to focus and concentrate, and stay calm, stay steady."
FL MORRIS / FMORRIS@STARBULLETIN.COM
Alex Akana of Kamehameha beat Kapiolani Rapoza of Sacred Hearts for a kill in the Warriors' win yesterday.
Game 1 tilted in Kamehameha's favor with an ace by Andrade and kills from Taylor Akana. The Warriors led 16-9 before the Lancers rallied. A string of passing and setting miscues, plus an ace by Shawna-Lei Santos, brought the visitors within 17-16.
However, Alex Akana and Taylor Akana slammed kills to extend the lead, and freshman Misty Ma'a entered the match to put down two kills of her own as the Warriors took Game 1.
Sacred Hearts opened the second game with a 7-3 lead, benefiting from a roof and a kill by Maneja. The Warriors chipped away and got aces from Whitney Viveiros, Andrade, Taylor Akana and Alex Akana. Taylor Akana's ace gave Kamehameha a 15-14 lead.
The Warriors had just nine kills in the second game, but Sacred Hearts had five hitting errors and a number of violations. The Lancers pulled within 20-18 on an ace by Morgan Donohue, but Kamehameha got a kill and ace from Viveiros to close out the game on a 5-1 blitz.
Blake was relieved.
"Sacred Hearts definitely has better ball control than last year. The pursuit is a lot better. It's a good job by their coaching staff," he said. "For us to come out with a victory, we're very fortunate. "I'm glad to see that they know they can play better."
For Sacred Hearts, a little more emphasis on defense and serve-receive may be in the works.
"It's more about concentration, being focused until it's over," Tsutsui said.
Kamehameha's pinpoint serving, with instructions from Blake, came in handy.
"We didn't have an opportunity to see them. No video, I had nothing. We were trying to find what we could do to put them in bad positions, like they did to us," he said.
Kamehameha hit .250 in the first game and .281 in Game 2.