Hawaii Beat


POSTED: Friday, April 24, 2009

Wie trails Ochoa by 1 at Corona

Defending champion Lorena Ochoa shot a bogey-free 8-under 65 yesterday to take a one-stroke lead over Michelle Wie of Honolulu and Na Yeon Choi after the first round of the LPGA Tour's Corona Championship in Morelia, Mexico.

Wie, who started on No. 10, eagled the par-5 fifth—hitting a 5-wood to 4 feet—and birdied three of her final four holes.

“;The greens were interesting,”; Wie said. “;They are in great condition. They give character to the golf course.”;

After opening the season with a second-place finish at Turtle Bay, she tied for 57th in Phoenix and tied for 67th at the Kraft Nabisco.

“;I know what I need to do out there tomorrow, so hopefully I can just go out and play my best,”; Wie said. “;I have been just plugging away, so I can only try my best. ... I need to be more consistent. The main thing is I just want to have fun out there.”;

Taylor applies to lead Wahine hoops

Punahou girls basketball coach Mike Taylor has applied for the vacant Hawaii women's basketball head coaching job.

After careful deliberation, the eight-year coach of the Buffanblu and third-grade teacher at Punahou decided to submit his resume just days before the application window closes.

“;I'd be honored if I could even be considered in their search for the new head coach,”; Taylor said. “;I got a great thing going on at Punahou, a great job teaching. My kids are there. Great job coaching, super kids, great support. I know how fortunate I am—there's a lot of love for them.”;

The Buffanblu have won four state championships under Taylor.

“;There's a lot of promise and upswing in that (UH) coaching job. We have a lot of talented kids here in Hawaii who represent the university very well.”;

Shoji makes MPSF first team

'Iolani and Punahou were well represented on the All-Mountain Pacific Sports Federation men's volleyball teams announced yesterday, with four island prep products playing for Stanford.

Cardinal junior setter Kawika Shoji ('Iolani 06) was named to the seven-member first team, while his brother Erik (Punahou '08), the Cardinal libero, was named to the second team. On the third team were Stanford's Spencer McLachlin (Punahou '07), a sophomore hitter, and freshman hitter Brad Lawson ('Iolani '08).

Erik Shoji and Lawson were also on the all-freshman team.

Doubling up on honors was BYU freshman middle Futi Tavana (Kauai '05), named to both the second team and the all-freshman squad.

The lone Hawaii player chosen was junior libero Ric Cervantes, named honorable mention.

Also named honorable mention was USC sophomore setter Riley McKibbin (Punahou '07).

Pepperdine's senior opposite Paul Carroll was named player of the year, UCI opposite Carson Clark the freshman of the year and UC San Diego's Kevin Ring coach of the year.

Wahine volleyball rates in academics

The Hawaii women's volleyball team was among nearly 800 Division I sports teams recognized by the NCAA for their academic performance based on the most recent multi-year Academic Progress Rates.

The Rainbow Wahine earned the NCAA Public Recognition Award, given each year to teams with APRs scoring in the top 10 percent of each sport.

The team had a perfect APR score of 1,000 during the 2007-08 academic year, the third consecutive year it has done so.

“;I'm very proud of our women's volleyball team's academic success,”; athletic director Jim Donovan said. “;It's a testament to our student-athletes' and coaches' commitment to academics.”;

Masunaga named as 'Iolani coach

Kristin Masunaga is the new girls soccer coach at 'Iolani, the school announced yesterday.

Masunaga, an assistant under Chris Nied, was promoted to replace Nied.

A 1999 graduate of 'Iolani, Masunaga played on the 1999 state championship soccer team and was named as the ILH and state player of the year.

“;I am honored and very excited to be given this opportunity to guide the girls through their high school soccer experience,”; Masunaga said.