Star-Bulletin Sports

Thursday, May 3, 2001

[Division II]

BYUH women one
win away from history

By Brandon Lee
Special to the Star-Bulletin

The Brigham Young-Hawaii women's tennis team has won two straight NCAA Division II national titles and four consecutive national crowns overall (1997-98 NAIA champions). With Saturday's West Regional final, the Lady Seasiders officially begin their quest to continue their string of national championships.

It's an impressive streak, but perhaps equally or even more impressive is what national No. 1 and host BYUH (32-0) would accomplish simply with a victory over the winner of tomorrow's first-round regional match between No. 22 Hawaii-Hilo (10-10) and Grand Canyon University (12-10).

If the Lady Seasiders win Saturday at Laie, it would be their 100th straight dual-match victory -- a feat that no NCAA tennis team at any level, men or women, has ever accomplished. The streak dates from the end of the 1998 season, BYUH's last in the NAIA, when it rebounded from a 5-4 loss to Auburn-Montgomery in its final regular-season match to take the NAIA championship.

While completely uncharted territory potentially lies ahead for the Lady Seasiders, they and their coach, Dave Porter, try not to think about it much. According to Porter, the ultimate goal in college athletics is the national championship, with the route to get there not as important as actually getting there.

"We don't talk about (the win streak) much," Porter said. "I think the girls are thinking more of going to the national tournament and the chance to win a title than the 100th victory. The 100th won't mean much if we lose the next week (at nationals)."

Saturday's winner receives a spot in the 16-team field of the Division II national championships at the University of West Florida in Pensacola, May 10-13.

The No. 2 BYUH men (27-2) have also experienced a successful season so far and look to continue it in regional and national competition. The Seasiders meet UC San Diego (9-9) in a West Regional final tomorrow with a bid to Pensacola on the line.

On Saturday, BYUH's courts will also be the site of two finals for a separate West Regional, one each for men and women.

Hawaii Pacific's No. 5 men's team (13-2) plays UC Davis (11-6) following the BYUH women's final. Then, the No. 13 HPU women (13-6) face UC San Diego (15-5).

New faces at Chaminade

Silverswords volleyball coach Glennie Adams has announced her recruiting class for next season. The players include Rainbow Wahine transfers Tehani Miyashiro and Shanna Willing. Miyashiro will be competing at setter, Willing at hitter. Middle blocker Gerrine Sam Fong returns to Chaminade after a couple of years off and outside hitter Valasi Sepulona from Farrington High School became eligible this spring. Completing the class is freshman recruit Janeen Waialae from University High, a setter.

Chaminade is looking for a new head softball coach after Allison Nihei's resignation Tuesday. The Silverswords went 18-23 this season, Nihei's third as skipper.

Those interested should send a resume, cover letter and references to Chaminade University, 3140 Waialae Ave. Honolulu, 96816, attn: Head. The deadline is May 14.

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