Warriors maintain undefeated record

Regular-season D-I champions sweep Maui High

Aliah Ayau of Kamehameha Schools Maui blocks a shot by Maui High’s Javan Fernandez during the first set of the Warriors’ 25-9, 25-20, 26-24 win over the Sabers on Thursday at Kaulaheanuiokamoku Gym.
• The Maui News / MATTHEW THAYER photo

Aliah Ayau of Kamehameha Schools Maui blocks a shot by Maui High’s Javan Fernandez during the first set of the Warriors’ 25-9, 25-20, 26-24 win over the Sabers on Thursday at Kaulaheanuiokamoku Gym. • The Maui News / MATTHEW THAYER photo

PUKALANI — The Kamehameha Schools Maui girls volleyball team didn’t have a lot at stake Thursday night at Kaulaheanuiokamoku Gym, but the Warriors aren’t about to surrender anything.

Already assured of the Maui Interscholastic League Division I regular-season championship, Kamehameha maintained its unbeaten record with a 25-9, 25-20, 26-24 victory over Maui High.

“No, not at all, we don’t like to lose,” outside hitter Alea Cervantes said after piling up 12 kills and three aces as the Warriors improved to 9-0.

Kamehameha coach Alex Akana took it a step further.

“They don’t like to lose at practice, they don’t like to lose conditioning — we race a lot against each other — and they don’t like to lose in the weight room,” Akana said. “They’re packing on weights because they want to lift the most, they want to run the fastest. Even if it’s a little tiny wash drill, they don’t want to lose.”

Maui High’s Barbara Vakalahi tips a ball at the net against Kamehameha Maui’s Aliah Ayau in the first set Thursday.
• The Maui News / MATTHEW THAYER photo

Maui High’s Barbara Vakalahi tips a ball at the net against Kamehameha Maui’s Aliah Ayau in the first set Thursday. • The Maui News / MATTHEW THAYER photo

Kamehameha has won its last 12 sets — a streak that began with a five-set victory over three-time defending league champion King Kekaulike in which the Warriors faced a pair of match points.

“I don’t think they realize how much potential they have,” Akana said. “We see it in spurts. We saw it in the Kekau­like game when they were pushed against the wall. I think it’s games like this when the little things matter, that’s when it counts for us. We always talk about going out there and making a statement and not being complacent with just winning.”

The Warriors opened the match with a 16-2 run capped by Inez Garcia’s ace. The Sabers (2-8) fought off three set points before a hitting error ended the set.

Maui High took a 4-3 lead in the second set on a kill by Javan Fernandez, but Kamehameha scored 11 of the next 15 points — Kimani Fernandez-Roy’s kill made the score 14-8. Eseta Samita’s ace pulled the Sabers within 17-16, but Talia Leauanae’s kill down the middle gave the Warriors a 19-16 lead, Tatiana Martinez’s quick-set kill made it 21-18 and back-to-back kills by Fernandez-Roy ended the set.

Fernandez-Roy put Kamehameha up by five in the third set before Maui High went on a 6-1 run to force extra points — Leauanae’s back-to-back kills ended the match.

Garcia finished with eight aces and 11 digs, Leauanae had eight kills and 11 digs, Meleana Hoo­pii had six aces, Fernandez-Roy finished with eight kills and Jasmine Corn had 11 digs.

Maui High, which was seeking its second win in three matches, is assured of being in the play-in match for the MIL D-I tournament.

“Right now we’re just waiting for the tournament, finding out who can be on the floor and who’s ready for the big match in the tournament,” said Sabers coach Kenny Houpo. “That’s all we’re waiting for.”

* Robert Collias is at rcollias@mauinews.com

*****

MIL STANDINGS

DIVISION I

…………………………… W…. L … Pct …… GB

x-Kamehameha Maui … 9 …. 0 … 1.000 … —

King Kekaulike ……….. 5 …. 4 … .556 … 4

Baldwin …………………. 4 …. 6 …. .400 …. 5-1⁄2

Lahainaluna ……………. 4 …. 6 …. .400 … 5-1⁄2

Maui High ………………. 2 …. 8 …. .200 … 7-1⁄2

DIVISION II

…………………………… W…. L … Pct …… GB

Seabury Hall …………… 8 …. 0 … 1.000 … —

Hana ……………………. 5 …. 1 …. .833 …. 2

Lanai …………………….. 3 …. 2 …. .600 …. 3-1⁄2

Molokai ………………….. 4 …. 4 …. .500 …. 4

Maui Prep ………………. 2 …. 5 …. .286 …. 5-1⁄2

St. Anthony …………….. 2 …. 7 ….. .222 …. 6-1⁄2

Haleakala Waldorf …….. 1 …. 6 ….. .143 …. 6-1⁄2

x-clinched regular-season championship

Thursday’s Results

Kamehameha Maui def. Maui High 25-9, 25-20, 26-24

Baldwin def. Lahainaluna 25-22, 25-20, 25-19

Today’s Matches

Haleakala Waldorf at Seabury Hall, 6 p.m.

Maui Prep at Molokai, 7 p.m.

Lanai at Hana, 7 p.m.

Saturday’s Matches

Maui Prep at Molokai, 9 a.m.

Lanai at Hana, 10 a.m.

Tuesday’s Matches

King Kekaulike at Kamehameha Maui, 6 p.m.

Baldwin at Maui High, 6 p.m.

Maui Prep vs. Haleakala Waldorf at Paia Gym, 6 p.m.

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