Post by Noname on Aug 15, 2004 18:56:10 GMT -5
By Stanley Lee
Advertiser Staff Writer
Looks can be deceiving.
At one glance, some of the Hawai'i teams in the Ann Kang Volleyball Tournament at Iolani School looked overmatched. They averaged around 5 feet 9 in height, while teams from California and Colorado had several players taller than 6 feet.
But what the local players lacked in height, they compensated with defense — diving for and digging every ball that came their way.
"Their defense is amazing," said Redondo Union High (Calif.) senior Lauren Kirk. "It's annoying to be on the other side of the net. You see your ball going down and it comes right back at you."
"Initially, you look across the net and think we'll be able to hammer balls," said Edison High (Calif.) coach Trent Jackson. "We'll get up and hammer balls but it keeps coming back over the net.
"Our girls like that in the sense we like to see that and rallies. Long rallies make it exciting."
And so does good defense, something Hawai'i teams rely on to offset their height disadvantage.
"You can compensate for taller players by modifying your block, how you block and how you defend," said Kalani co-coach Joey Miyashiro, whose team went 8-0 in pool play. "Every time we go up and jump, it's got to be efficient. Every time we put the ball down, we got to do it instead of going for a long (rally)."
Mental toughness also helps, according to Miyashiro.
"It's more of a mental game," she explained. "When you look across the net, you can't go 'these guys are so tall, I can't do it.' "
"Our coach tells us not to be scared," said Iolani junior Marissa Ma. "Being a Hawai'i team, we're shorter but we're not scared. It all depends on your mentality that gets you through the game."
Said Hawai'i Baptist freshman Kathryn Kaichi: "You just have to be confident. We have to be quicker on our feet and be prepared for anything."
Edison's Jackson was so impressed, he hopes he could model his team, which advanced to the California Interscholastic Federation semifinals last year, after a Hawai'i squad.
"Just the way they don't let anything drop and fight for every point," Jackson said. "They dig everything. They are relentless, play great defense and have great ball control."
The four-day, 20-team girls tournament that ended yesterday lived up to its reputation of having some of the best Mainland and local competition.
"We've been really looking forward to it since we got invited," Redondo's Kirk said.
Jackson, who heard about the tournament through a friend who coaches at Newport Harbor High (Calif.), was told the tournament was full of aloha spirit.
"There's been high quality play and everybody has been super nice to us," Jackson said.
Alan Kang, whose late wife carries the name of the tournament, invited the Edison team to dinner at his house while Iolani washed the teams' jerseys.
"Where else would anything like that happen? Nowhere," said Diane (Sebastian) Pestolesi, who played for the University of Hawai'i from 1978 to 1981 and whose daughter, Kari, is an Edison player.
"It's an honor to be invited to this tournament," Miyashiro added. "It's run in such a classy way ... you want to be a part of this."
Fresh off summer vacation, the tournament allowed players to get used to one another and serve as a building ground heading into the regular season.
"We've gotten so much closer because we're staying together and rooming together," Kirk said.
Formerly the Iolani Invitational Volleyball Tournament, it was renamed last year to honor Ann Kang, the former Iolani coach who died in July of 2003 after a 19-month fight against amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig's disease.
"I have a lot of respect for her because I know how hard she worked to make this Iolani volleyball community," Ma said. "I'm proud to play in her tournament."
Post by Noname on Aug 15, 2004 19:02:05 GMT -5
Overland split Castle 25-22, 20-25. Harvard Westlake def. University High 25-19, 25-16. Castle split Seabury Hall 25-22, 27-25. 'Aiea def. University High 25-18, 25-20. Waiakea def. Overland 27-25, 25-21. 'Aiea def. St. Francis 25-21, 25-15. Moanalua def. Iolani 23-21, 23-20. Hawai'i Baptist split Moanalua 22-20, 25-22. Iolani split Edison 19-25, 24-20.
Redondo def. Kalani 20-25, 25-17, 25-16. Mira Costa def. Buena 25-20, 24-25, 25-20. Kalani def. Corona Del Mar 25-20, 25-19. Buena def. Lahabra 25-18, 23-21. Buena def. Kalani 20-25, 25-23, 25-21. Mira Costa def. Redondo 25-18, 25-24. Kalani def. Redondo 25-20, 25-11.
Mira Costa def. Kalani 25-16, 25-14.