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Hawaii Beat

By Star-Bulletin Staff

Wednesday, November 8, 2000

Murakami improved
but still critical

Star-Bulletin staff

University of Hawaii baseball coach Les Murakami, who suffered a stroke last Thursday, had "shown some improvement" yesterday after undergoing brain surgery, according to a Queen's Medical Center spokesman.

But Murakami, 64, was still in critical condition in the intensive care unit.

The surgery Monday was necessary because of swelling and pressure on Murakami's brain.

The procedure is called a craniotomy, and involved removal of a small part of his skull and temporal lobe of the brain.

Murakami has been totally sedated since Monday.

He has directed the UH baseball program the past 30 years and owns a record of 1,079-570-4. He has said he will step down after the 2001 season.

Sullivan reclaims title

After placing second to Bruce Irons last year, 1998 winner Pancho Sullivan was again crowned king of Sunset Beach with a victory in the Rusty/XCEL Pro surfing championship yesterday.

It was Sullivan's second Hawaii Pro Am Circuit (HPAC) title of the season, an Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) qualifying series of five surf events held on the North Shore and neighbor islands.

The early portion of the contest was run in clean surf in the 6- to 8-foot range. As the day progressed, a second swell bumped the surf up into the 8 to 10-plus range, with waves breaking on the outside reefs during the final.

Sullivan and Brian Pacheco were tied at the end of the contest. The judges broke the tie based on the two highest scoring waves of the competitors, instead of the normal three.

Wave No. 6 for Sullivan earned a score of 8, one of the highest scoring waves of the event. It also earned him $4,000.

Perkins longboard winner

The Longboard Challenge was held in conjunction with the pro surfing event at Sunset yesterday. It was a 45-minute superheat held right before the final of the main event.

In 8- to 10-foot surf, former World Longboard Champion Bonga Perkins took first place and the $1,000 prize.

Kanoa Dahlin, winner of the Hawaiian Longboard Federation series, placed second and earned $500. Lance Ho'okano pocketed $300 for a third-place finish.

World-record lift for Pratt

Conrad Pratt, a 12-year-old Punahou School student who weighs 90 pounds, set his sixth world bench-press record with a 123.3-pound lift last weekend while representing the United States in the 2000 AAU World Powerlifting Championships at Mesquite, Nev.

Competing in the boys' 12-13 years/89-97 pounds bodyweight division, Pratt broke the record of 110 pounds with a 112-pound effort on his first lift. He then raised the mark to 117.5, 121 and, finally, 123.2 on three more tries.

Pratt made each of his lifts "raw" -- bench pressing with a weight belt as the only means of support, rather than with the aid of wrist wraps or a bench press suit.

He now also holds 12 AAU American bench-press records.

Cannery boxing show

There will be a Pro-Am boxing card at the Dole Cannery Ballroom on Nov. 14, starting at 7 p.m.

The 10-round professional main event will pit Juanito Rubillar of the Philippines against Yuki Hashigawa of Japan at 108 pounds.

John Lopez of Hilo will face Jerry Saribay of Honolulu in a four-round pro bout at 142 pounds and there will be a three-round exhibition between Andy Tabanas and Ratanchai Varapin.

In a featured 147-pound amateur matchup, Waianae's Walter "Elvis" Salas, a silver medalist in the National Junior Olympics last summer, will take on Kaneohe's Josey Smith.

Tickets cost $20, $50 and, for ringside, $100.

No. 1 HPU hosts tourney

The top-ranked Hawaii Pacific women's volleyball team will host the Pacific West Conference Tournament this week at the Blaisdell Arena.

The Sea Warriors (21-0 overall, 14-0 PacWest) face defending NCAA Division II champion Brigham Young-Hawaii at 5 p.m. Friday in the first semifinal. In the other semifinal, Seattle Pacific takes on Western Washington.

The losers play at 5 p.m. Saturday, with the championship match to follow. The winner does not get an automatic berth in the NCAA Tournament and must wait until Sunday to learn if it has been selected.

HPU remained No. 1 for the 11th consecutive week in the coaches' poll released yesterday.

Gusman top tennis pro

Bernard Gusman, the Director of Tennis at Punahou School, has been named the USPTA Professional of the Year for the Hawaii Division.

Gusman has coached at Punahou since 1991, overseeing both the boys' and girls' programs. He received the award in conjunction with the USPTA-Hawaii weekend at the Kapalua Tennis Resort on Maui.

Other winners announced were: Robert Beckvall (rookie pro); Mark Skillicorn (high school coach), Dave Porter (college coach), Arnold Yuen (community service), Wei Yu Su (men's open), Jim Schwitters (men's senior player), Ann Pellow (women's open player) and Stacey Panui (women's senior player).

Azinger, Jacobsen in

Paul Azinger, defending Sony Open in Hawaii champion, and Johnny Bellinger Shootout winner Peter Jacobsen, are entered in the 2001 First Hawaiian Bank-sponsored Shootout.

Azinger has played in 12 of the 13 previous Shootouts and Jacobsen has participated in five.

Army-Navy duel on ice

Army and Navy hockey teams will play a benefit game Nov. 30 at 7 p.m. at the Ice Palace.

Proceeds go to the Hawaiian Youth Hockey Association.

Tickets cost $3.50 in advance or $5 at the door. A family pass for four is available for $12.

For more information, call 487-9921.

Fever winner enjoys holiday

Joyce Tokazu had the day off yesterday ... and she enjoyed it by thinking about how she would spend her $500 won in the Star-Bulletin's Football Fever Contest.

"I'll share it with my husband (David),'' Tokazu said. "Our ballots are a family thing. We've entered for years.''

Like many of the entrants, Tokazu went 9-1, missing out on perfection when Green Bay defeated Minnesota in overtime Monday night. To be eligible for this week's drawing, entrants had to have at least an 8-2 record, which was the best the Fever panel could turn in.

The top panelist was KITV's Dan Meisenzahl at 8-2. Ballots are available every Monday and Tuesday in the Star-Bulletin.

See line scores and results in
the [Scoreboard] section.

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