Moanalua still reigns in OIA boys volleyball after five-set win over Mililani

Moanalua still reigns in OIA boys volleyball after five-set win over Mililani

Moanalua still reigns in OIA boys volleyball after five-set win over Mililani

BY MICHAEL LASQUERO | HSRN
PUBLISHED MAY 2, 2024

Moanalua is still king in OIA boys volleyball.

Na Menehune held off a late comeback by Mililani in five sets to win their fifth straight league crown Wednesday night at Radford’s Jim Alegre Gymnasium.

Set scores were 25-19, 25-15, 27-29, 23-25 and 15-10.

A year after winning title No. 11 in school history with a trio of Hawai’i-bound signees, Moanalua (14-0) did it with mainly new faces.

“There were big expectations for the seniors that are coming in because of the star-studded senior group that we had last year and so they came into their own and they earned this as a team and they figured it out as a team in the end,” said Moanalua coach Alan Cabanting, who has led Na Menehune to 10 of their 12 total league titles.

Ezekiel Sablan was one of those new faces as he put down 20 kills and was one of three players to record double-digit kills for the victors.

“It feels great to be a part of this team and to help them with another OIA winning streak and it feels great just to be here right now,” Sablan said.

Jaycen Bush was also key with 14 kills and eight digs and D’Angelo Ross had 13 kills and hit .440 for the match.

On the other side of the net Tyler Duranceau had a double-double of 20 kills and 14 digs and Aris Mateo had 18 kills to lead the Trojans (12-1) in the loss.

Mililani was seeking its first league crown since 2017.

Waialua makes history; wins first-ever OIA boys volleyball championship

Waialua makes history; wins first-ever OIA boys volleyball championship

Waialua makes history; wins first-ever OIA boys volleyball championship

BY MICHAEL LASQUERO | HSRN
PUBLISHED MAY 2, 2024

History was made Wednesday night.

Waialua captured the program’s first-ever OIA boys volleyball championship in reverse sweep-fashion over Kailua in the league’s Division II title match at Radford’s Jim Alegre Gymnasium.

Set scores were 21-25, 22-25, 25-16, 25-22, 15-10.

It was a total team effort for the Bulldogs, who won their sixth straight contest to finish OIA play with a 9-3 record.

Jaris Ablao had a double-double of 13 kills and 10 digs, Keoni Nahoopii put down 12 kills, Shane Kelly had 11 kills and Dayton Quick registered nine kills and seven blocks. Setter Cyres Lacar was also solid with 39 assists, 17 digs and five kills.

“I wanted that banner,” said Quick. “Individual success is awesome, but this is a team sport and I came here for that banner be hung up in my gym with my teammates and our year on it.”

Waialua adjusted its lineup after the second set and made adjustments that saw the Bulldogs take a commanding 19-11 lead in the third set and start the fourth set on a 9-0 run. The Bulldogs also hit .147 and .125 in the first two sets but hit .321 in the third set.

“When you have a big lead like that, you have to keep it up,” said Quick. “Volleyball is a game of momentum and my coaches say ‘first team to grab onto the momentum and hold on, almost always comes out on top.’”

The Bulldogs won two of their three matches that went to five sets this season while the Surfriders (7-6) are 0-3.

Kaleb Cui had a match-high 22 kills in the loss to lead Kailua, who was seeking its first OIA title since 2014.

Kalani rallies to earn gritty OIA East boys volleyball win over Roosevelt in five sets

Kalani rallies to earn gritty OIA East boys volleyball win over Roosevelt in five sets

Kalani rallies to earn OIA East boys volleyball win over Roosevelt in five sets

BY MICHAEL LASQUERO | HSRN
PUBLISHED APRIL 10, 2024

HONOLULU — The Kalani boys volleyball team has a knack for going the distance.

The Falcons rallied past visiting Roosevelt in five sets Tuesday night in an OIA East match at Earl C. Homer Gymnasium. Set scores were 25-21, 22-25, 14-25, 27-26 and 15-13.

It was Kalani’s fourth match this year that went five sets as the Falcons improved to 6-3 and moved into fourth place in the league standings with two contests left in the regular season.

“I think we did really great,” said middle blocker Camren Cheung. “I really like that we kept up the energy and the defense was really good. They were a tough opponent but I’m really excited for the next two games that we have.”

The Falcons also had to deal with the loss to starting middle Kevin Wu to injury during pregame warmups. Before the match they huddled around him on the athletic trainer’s table and rolled off six straight points to start the contest.

“It was really tough because he was one of our starting middles too, but definitely our bench played that bigger role and they came out and helped us too,” Cheung said.

Roosevelt (7-2) were loaded at the pins with hitters Ford Lyons, Trace Nakaahiki, Jonathan Yadao and a trio of middles in Nathanael Vo, Kenneth Her and Yu-Tang Hsu, but the Falcons had more depth pieces that played a difference down the stretch.

Outside hitter Eric Chan and opposite Grayson Barnhill held it down in the early stages of the match while Cheung was a big boost off the bench for Kalani in the final two sets. Kazuma Ishikawa also redeemed himself in the later stages of the match after a handful of errors early on and sophomore outside hitter Corey Tin came on strong when he entered the match in the fourth set.

The Falcons also used two setters with Kyler Shigemi getting the controls in the back row before getting spelled by the taller Hayato Sawada when the rotation moved into the front row. Libero Sky Voong was also key in keeping rallies alive and defensive specialist Kyle Nagano came up big with a diving dig that staved off match point in the fourth set to keep Kalani alive.

“It’s a six-man game, it’s never a one-man game,” said Cheung. “I think we fought really strong together.”

Kalani will finish the regular season with a road game at Moanalua on Thursday and a home game against Kailua next Tuesday while the Rough Riders will travel to Kaimuki and Moanalua to close out league play.