Kalani's Meghan Koizumi tried to hit past Moanalua's Resina Nataniela during the girls OIA championship match last night.

Kalani and Kahuku
win OIA titles

One team hit a bump and another kept rolling along.

The Kalani girls and Mililani boys teams went into last night's Oahu Interscholastic Association volleyball championships undefeated, but only the Falcons came out unscathed.

Kalani (14-0) easily defeated Moanalua (12-2) to capture the OIA girls title, while Kahuku (11-1) sent Mililani (12-1) to its first defeat and captured the league's boys championship in a close 26-24, 25-23 match.

Tamari Miyashiro pounded down 20 kills and hit .459 to lead the Falcons to a 25-17, 25-22 win.

"She's such a consistent player and she means so much to this team," Kalani coach Aven Lee said about her junior hitter. "We've got a little time to celebrate, and tomorrow we've got to get cracking."

The season is far from over for any of last night's participants. All will be involved in next week's state tournament at Punahou, McKinley and the Stan Sheriff Center.

Miyashiro had 11 kills in Game 1, including the last two points, and most of them were on feeds from Marisa Okamoto. Amber Kanoa added three late-game kills to help finish it off.

Game 2 was much more intense as Moanalua fought back from a 10-3 deficit to make it 11-10. The Menehunes kept it close all the way until 24-22, but Miyashiro ended it with a blast through the double-block of Sasha Silva and Briana Amian.

"She (Miyashiro) was great and Kalani played great," Moanalua coach Tommy Lake said. "We could have played much better and made a lot of passing mistakes with a lot of balls going into the net."

Miyashiro is looking forward to the next challenge.

"We all wanted this so badly," she said. "And every single person played a big role on this team. At the states, we have to go in and play fearless."

Kalani's Dara Waialae finished with 23 digs. Alisa Hout led Moanalua with 12 kills.

In the boys match, Kahuku took advantage of a big Mililani Game 1 gaffe. The Trojans used the wrong server twice and the officials took two points off the scoreboard, shaving a 13-9 lead to 11-9.

"I screwed up. Using the wrong server, that was my fault," Mililani coach Kauanoe Eldredge said. "And then it took so long (for the officials) to figure out what to do that it took the momentum away from our boys."

Hapaki Kaululaau's two kills and two aces gave the Red Raiders a 16-15 lead, and the score remained close all the way to 24-all. Brandon Carr's block for a point and thundering kill ended it.

In Game 2, the Trojans led most of the way on the hitting of Aaron Fujimoto, Scott Neumann and Puna Neumann. But things began to fall apart with the Mililani leading 19-15.

The blocking of Kahuku's Carr, Abel Soares and Andrew Thompson began to get in the way of not only the Trojans' hitters, but also of the team's title hopes.

"That's what made the difference, blocking," Red Raiders coach Howard Kaululaau (Hapaki's dad) said. "We practiced all week on the double-block after having scouted them plenty, and it paid off."

Okosene Ale pounded four crucial late kills, while Hapaki Kaululaau broke a 23-all tie with two title-clinching kills. Ale and Kaululaau had nine kills apiece.

"We started slow, but after a timeout we settled down and played our game," Carr said. "We did a better job on the block. It slowed their offense down."

Mililani setter Brandon Caban said the Trojans were beaten in the cerebral part of the game.

"Mentally, they were on it," he said. "We didn't prepare as hard as we could have and we just didn't have it. We can learn from this -- to work harder and push as hard as we can."

Fujimoto had a match-high 10 kills for Mililani.


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