Vulcan Hoops Split Senior Night Games Against Hawaii Pacific
For the last few years, senior night has not been kind to Jeff Law’s basketball squad. After four consecutive losses on the special night, the Vulcans picked up a much needed win, beating Hawaii Pacific 81-73. More importantly, the win snapped a four game losing streak.
The win also game seniors Zachary Wilde, Joshua Figueroa, Vince Sanekane, Nick Kanno, and Dirk Snel a win in their final home game.
The first half of the game almost had the resemblance of another loss in the ledger. Even though the Vulcans held a one point advantage at the break, words like “ugly” and “horrible” were descriptions fitting for the play from both teams. The Vulcans had a double-digit turnover count after the first half, and looked as lost as they had in many conference games this year.
The turning point for the team came just a few minutes into the second half. Dirk Snel drained one of his four three pointers over two and a half minutes in to start a 9-0 run that was finished off by a Terrell Mack jumper less than 2 minutes later to give the Vulcans an 11 point lead, 45-34, with 15:24 to play.
A few minutes later, after HPU got the game back within a bucket, the home team rattled off another long run, this time a 8-0 spurt over two and a half minutes, jump started by a three-point play by Mack, starting off five points in a row for him, and capped off with another Snel three, bringing the lead back up to 12 at 57-45.
The Sea Warriors would not cave in that easily. A Marko Cukic two-pointer with 9:32 remaining started off a 9-0 HPU run that, after a LaBrent Chappell trey, cut the lead down to 3, 59-56. That would be as close as Hawaii Pacific would get.
The outgoing seniors were represented well in this game. Zach Wilde finishes with a double-double, scoring 10 points and grabbing 12 rebounds. 6-foot-11 jolly giant Josh Figueroa started for the first time this season and contributed 6 points. Snel dropped four treys, finishing with 12 points. And, Vince Sanekane saw four minutes of action, grabbing a rebound and missing two shots.
Hawaii Pacific 28 45 – 73
Hawaii-Hilo 29 52 – 81
Hawaii Pacific – 24-47 FG (51.1%), 6-16 3PT (37.5%), 19-26 FT (73.1%)
Hawaii-Hilo – 29-59 FG (49.2%), 7-19 3PT (36.8%), 16-20 FT (80.0%)
LEADING SCORERS: Hawaii Pacific – Fran Urli 20, Nick Frazier 14, Marko Cukic 11, Jelany White 9, LaBrent Chappell 8, Kawika Lyons 6, Michael Pierce 3, Dustin Simcox 2. Hawaii-Hilo – Terrell Mack 25, Dirk Snel 12, Zachary Wilde 10, Paul Batausa 10, CJ Brown 9, Joshua Figueroa 6, Michael Melonas 5, Mychael Hearn 2.
Lady Vulcans Fall to Sea Warriors Despite Furious Rally
The University of Hawaii at Hilo Lady Vulcans saw an 8 point lead slip away early in the second half when HPU point guard Taiyande Huskey. After watching that lead balloon up to 18 points, they spent the last five minutes trying to eliminate that deficit. But, a Jameia McDuffie running three-pointer from the left wing fell short and the Hawaii Pacific Sea Warriors held on for a 67-64 win, spoiling the senior night festivities for four Vulcan seniors.
UHH lead the entire first half, even as HPU gained some momentum at the end of the half to cut their deficit to one at 32-31. Huskey’s trey nearly 45 seconds into the second half game HPU their first advantage of the game at 34-32, and the would never lose it. They only strengthened that lead midway through the half, going on an 11-0 run which lasted about four and a half minutes, led by Mana Hopkins three field goals in that stretch. The former Konawaena Wildcat finished the game with a team high 20 points and 11 rebounds.
The Vulcans never quit, slowly cutting the lead down to 12 points before embarking on a 9-0 run over the last 1:45 of the game to get within three, but McDuffie’s desperation three-point attempt fell a tad shy at the buzzer, sealing the win for Hawaii Pacific.
Of the two seniors that played for the Vulcans, Hillary Hurley stood out among all of them. Hurley grabbed another double-double, dropping 26 points and grabbing 19 rebounds in the loss. Sheena Pio played a few minutes in the game, scoring two points. Hotia Vaaimamao didn’t play because of an injury suffered on the road trip. And, Dayna Jandoc was not dressed to play. She’s been out all year with an injury.
Both Vulcan teams finish out the season Saturday at McCabe Gym on the shared campus of Saint Louis High School and Chaminade University to take on the Chaminade Silverswords. Both games from Honolulu will be broadcast live on the Big Island’s ESPN Radio beginning at 4:30 pm.
Hawaii Pacific 31 36 – 67
Hawaii-Hilo 32 32 – 64
Hawaii Pacific: 26-53 FG(49.1%), 5-20 3PT (25.0%), 10-16 FT (62.5%)
Hawaii-Hilo: 24-64 FG (37.5%), 4-18 3PT (22.2%), 12-14 FT (85.7%)
LEADING SCORERS: Hawaii Pacific – Mana Hopkins 20, Paris Gravely 15, Taiyande Huskey 13, Melody Ladrido 7, Kathryn Tolbert 7, Nicole Fenumiai 3, Susannah Walmsley 2. Hawaii-Hilo – Hillary Hurley 26, Jameia McDuffie 15, Kirsten Shimizu 9, Kirsty Imai 6, Shannon Rousseau 4, Sheena Pio 2, Elise Spain 2.