Kamehameha coach resigns

Jesse Nakanishi replaces Darryl Gabriel as the Kamehameha boys basketball coach, Warriors athletic director Blane Gaison said yesterday.

Nakanishi is a 1995 Kamehameha graduate and former Warriors basketball player who has coached the school's junior varsity team since 2001. He's a dorm advisor at the Kapalama campus and has served as a varsity assistant and an intermediate head coach.

"My goal is for all players, from intermediate to varsity, to realize that it's a privilege to wear 'Kamehameha' across their chest and that they'll have certain obligations to meet," Nakanishi said. "I'll expect them to be respectful and sportsmanlike, work hard, be disciplined and have fun. If we can do that, winning will take care of itself.

"I know some of the returnees and the JV players coming up, so it's not like it's going to be brand new. I look forward to being a big part of their development. We'll be trying to build the elite program in the state."

Gabriel spent two years as the Warriors coach, but decided to resign this summer for family reasons. He led the Warriors to a 14-6 record and a fourth-place finish at the state tournament a year ago. He'll miss coaching, but felt a great need to be with his growing young children. He also coached at University High and Saint Louis and played at Punahou and Loyola Marymount University.

"I'll miss coaching, especially watching the players grow and become better people," said Gabriel, who didn't rule out the possibility of coaching again some day.

Nakanishi said that being named head coach at Kamehameha is the "greatest honor" he's ever had. He believes the Interscholastic League of Honolulu will be competitively balanced this season, but regards Iolani -- with standout point guard Derrick Low -- as the team to beat. The Raiders beat the Warriors four times a year ago, including a five-point victory in the state semifinals.

"Not having Darryl is a huge loss," Gaison said. "He took us to the state tournament both years. But we're excited about having one of our own. It's nice to see Jesse come full circle at the varsity level. We like the experience he brings to our program, and our kids just love him."

Top returnees for the Warriors are forward Waika Spencer and guard Kawika Hepa.


E-mail to Sports Editor


Text Site Directory:
[News] [Business] [Features] [Sports] [Editorial] [Do It Electric!]
[Classified Ads] [Search] [Subscribe] [Info] [Letter to Editor]
© 2003 Honolulu Star-Bulletin --