The University of Hawaii women's volleyball program is by no means the only one in the state to experience success.
Two accomplished Division II squads will be on display today at the King Kekaulike High School gym in Pukalani, when Brigham Young-Hawaii faces Hawaii Pacific in an exhibition match at 5 p.m.
"There is a lot of talent here," said HPU coach Daryl Kapis. "I think the challenge that the Division II programs have in Hawaii is getting kids to think of us as another option above some Mainland schools. A lot of girls will think either UH, a very high probability if they have that option, and then it's Mainland and then we kind of come into play.
‘The last couple years we have been up and up with HPU, where we will take one and they will take one. We have always been splitting the matches, so we know we’re heading for a tough match’
– Mona Ah-Hoy, who coached BYU-Hawaii to an NCAA D-II runner-up finish last season
"That's one of the challenges that we face. We're getting better."
BYUH, last year's NCAA Division II runner-up, has signed Lahainaluna graduate Kulia Murray, who played the last two seasons at Casper (Wyo.) College.
Today's match is a fundraiser for Hawaiian Style Volleyball Club. Tickets in advance are $5 and are available at hawaiianstylevbc.com. Tickets at the door will be $7.
"We're super excited," Kapis said. "I have been trying to get something like this set up for at least six years, so I'm just excited that we are able to do it. I'm fired up about it and our team is fired up about it."
The Seasiders and Sea Warriors split their two regular-season matches in 2013.
"The last couple years we have been up and up with HPU, where we will take one and they will take one," said BYUH coach Mona Ah-Hoy. "We have always been splitting the matches, so we know we're heading for a tough match."
Both teams recorded wins over Upper Iowa in exhibition matches earlier this week.
"It is something different," Ah-Hoy said. "We're usually just going right down the road to play HPU."
* Robert Collias is at firstname.lastname@example.org