War­riors cel­e­brate se­niors

The Garden Island - - Morning Briefing - Den­nis Fujimoto

KAPAA — “It’s tough to live like this,” said Waimea girls vol­ley­ball coach Chad De­lanoza in the midst of the ex­cite­ment of Kapaa High School’s se­nior night fes­tiv­i­ties at the Ber­nice Hund­ley Gym, Tues­day night. “This was a hard-fought game to the end. Mis­for­tunes turn to un­forced er­rors.”

The Kapaa High School se­nior night where eight grad­u­at­ing se­niors — Bri­anna Binder, Kailee Bush, Leipua Kaui, Ka­hele Maka-Adric, Rachel Pleas, Anolani Rosa, Keani Tolenoa, and Tia Takasaki — were hon­ored for their ser­vices be­fore an ap­pre­cia­tive, over­flow crowd was made sweeter af­ter Kapaa out­lasted Waimea in five sets — 9-25, 25-22, 25-22, 25-27, and 15-11.

“We mixed it up tonight,” said Kapaa coach Evan Costa. “Cer­tain sit­u­a­tions, cer­tain girls. This was the only thing we could do. We could’ve done the same thing, but this is the only thing we could’ve done.”

Waimea rolled to a 25-9 first set be­hind be­hind strong ser­vice strings from Gabrielle Pel­eras and Daysha Nelmida Rice, but ran into trou­ble in the sec­ond and third sets when Kapaa came alive.

“The girls did a great job of keep­ing the ball alive,” Costa said. “The back row kept the ball alive, the libero, Takasaki, dug out some big balls, and even our front line had some nice digs.”

Hold­ing a 2-1 ad­van­tage head­ing into the fourth set, the Mene­hune took an 8-2 lead be­hind a Nelmida Rice ser­vice string that in­cluded a kill and key War­rior er­rors.

Tolenoa took over in the ser­vice block and pulled Kapaa to a 7-9 deficit that saw Pleas come up the left­side and sopho­more Lani Alo get­ting a big block.

Tied at 19-19, Pleas served up an ace en route to a 22-20 lead be­fore a Mene­hune hit­ting er­ror pushed the but­ton on a 23-20 lead.

The Mene­hune weren’t done as Nelmida Rice served up the rally, but fell short, 22-25.

Kapaa and Waimea bat­tled at the net on a close third set be­fore a Tolenoa kill pulled dance and the play­ers will be vy­ing for an in­vi­ta­tion to work with US Club Soc­cer in Ari­zona.

“This time, we’re lucky. Luck­ily, we’ll get the coach from the girls coach from the War­riors into the driver’s seat on the back-and-forth skir­mish. Talia Washington brought Bush to the ser­vice block for a string that pulled the U14 and U16 (teams) com­ing,” Sem­blante said. “I think this is the first time they’ll see the girls. Usu­ally, they’ll only see the boys.”

He added: “We’ll just try our best.” Kapaa to 24-19 on two Mene­hune er­rors be­fore a Kaui dump up the mid­dle sealed the 25-22 fi­nal score.

Kapaa knot­ted the fourth set, 22-22 on a Kaui block in the mid­dle to ig­nite the fans’ en­thu­si­asm as Waimea’s Raelee Samio went up the mid­dle for the 23-22 goa­head only to have Kapaa catch up on a Mene­hune hit­ting er­ror.

Fresh­man Maeha Pi­tu­rach­satit took the ser­vice block for two points with Alo pulling Kapaa up, 25-24 only to have Waimea an­swer with a Pel­eras kill knot­ting the set, 25-25. A Kapaa er­ror helped Waimea to the ad­van­tage be­fore Pel­eras sealed the 27-25 win, forc­ing the fifth set.

Kapaa took a 7-4 lead in the piv­otal set be­hind a five­point ser­vice string from Tolenoa that in­cluded hits from Pleas and a hit and block from Alo.

Waimea tied the set be­hind Te­hani To­gioka’s ser­vice string that in­cluded kills from Pel­eras and Nelmida Rice. Fall Frenzy rates are ex­clu­sive of tax. Rates sub­ject to change. Valid un­til Oc­to­ber 30, 2017. Can­not be com­bined with other spe­cials, dis­counts or group/club play.

Pleas served up a 13-9 lead for Kapaa that in­cluded a hit from Washington, a back row slam from Tolenoa, and a Kaui block be­fore Kapaa closed the books be­hind Mene­hune mis­cues.

“You have to give credit to Kapaa for what they did,” De­lanoza said. “They have the num­bers com­ing into the match. We’re look­ing ahead to Fri­day when we meet Is­land School and noth­ing else. We need to play to win. We have ev­ery­thing to lose. There’s no rest for us.”

Fol­low­ing the match, Kapaa, Waimea and Kauai high schools sit with 3-2 sec­ond round stand­ings — a three-way tie.

Ear­lier in the night, Waimea’s ju­nior var­sity team kept its un­de­feated streak alive — 25-18, 25-20 and 25-13 — with one more match re­main­ing in its sea­son.

Rachel Cur­nan from the Kauai High School team had time to bring sev­eral of her team­mates to the Ber­nice Hund­ley Gym to join the fes­tiv­i­ties for War­rior se­niors af­ter the Red Raiders took the Is­land School var­sity in three sets — 25-13, 25-16 and 25-19. The Kauai JV also swept the Voy­agers — 2725, 25-14 and 26-24.

Kauai next hosts Kapaa on Fri­day for its se­nior night with the JV match start­ing at 5 p.m. Waimea will travel to the Wil­cox Gym­na­sium at Is­land School for its match which starts with the JV game at 5 p.m. and the var­sity start­ing no ear­lier than 6:30 p.m.

Should Waimea win at Is­land School, the Mene­hune will face the win­ner of the Kauai/Kapaa game in a play­off for the sec­ond round.

Kauai JV over Is­land School, 27-25, 25-14, 26-24

Kauai Var­sity over Is­land School, 25-13, 25-16, 25-19

Waimea JV over Kapaa, 25-18, 25-20, 25-13

Kapaa over Waimea 9-25, 25-22, 25-22, 25-27, 15-11

PHO­TOS BY DEN­NIS FUJIMOTO / THE GAR­DEN IS­LAND

Kapaa’s Rachel Pleas and Talia Washington go up to de­fend against the hit by Waimea’s Keana Silva in the fourth set Tues­day at the Ber­nice Hund­ley Gym.

RA­MON SEM­BLANTE / CON­TRIB­UTED PHOTO

From left: Lily Watari, Jas­mine Sem­blante, Jaidah Ahuna and Bri­anna Ehia stop for a photo at the North Vid­inha Soc­cer Fields.

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