[ HIGH SCHOOL VOLLEYBALL ]
Kamehameha preps for
playoffs with win
By Brendan Sagara
Special to the Star-Bulletin
With a week remaining in the ILH girls volleyball regular season, last night's matchup between No. 3 Kamehameha and No. 5 Hawaii Baptist provided everyone with an early glimpse of the postseason in a game that would be decided by adjustments and errors.
Tied for second place, just behind top-ranked Punahou with identical 9-1 records entering the match, both squads came out swinging and hustling to produce a playoff-type atmosphere in a match eventually won by Kamehameha 21-25, 25-21, 25-22.
Hawaii Baptist used a precise passing game and a stubborn defense to take game one 25-21. With returning All-ILH defensive specialist Jayme Lee and Eagles teammates Kristine Miyasato and Tricia Yoshimura diving all over the court to dig up Kamehameha attacks, HBA worked its way to an 11-7 lead early in the first game. Lee finished the night with 12 digs.
The Warriors used kills from Deven Bukoski and Leslie Ari, and an HBA error to cozy back up to the Eagles at 11-10. But HBA dug deep and rallied for a five-point run, keyed by Kara Kamikawa's back-to-back service aces, to extend the lead to 16-10.
From there, HBA traded points with the Warriors, taking the first game on consecutive Kamehameha errors.
"I had never seen them (HBA) play until tonight," said Warrior coach Chris Blake. "They were very steady and we made a lot of errors in the first game, so we had to make a lot of adjustments."
The Warriors were able to get the kinks out in the second set, as setter Tehane Kahalehau took charge and got the Kamehameha attack on track, recording six assists while getting five kills apiece from Bekah Torres and Alexis Robbins.
Hawaii Baptist led 17-15 near the midpoint of game two, but the Warriors scored seven straight -- including three on kills by Torres -- to move into the lead at 22-17. Two kills by Robbins and an HBA service error pushed the match to a third game.
"In games two and three our passing broke down and took us out of our system," HBA coach Keith Sugiura said. "They have a solid middle attack and we made some adjustments, but they are a good team and they just made plays."
A couple of three-point runs by HBA pulled them within two at 24-22 in the third game, but a double-block of an Eagle attack ended the game and match at 25-22.
"This is an awesome feeling, what an adrenaline rush," Kahalehau said. "I think we have a great team and we came together tonight and played together and got through it together."