LIHUE – The Kaua’i Red Raider boys and girls prep varsity volleyball squads held off the determined Kapa’a Warriors Saturday night to pull into a tie with idle Waimea for the Kauai Interscholastic Federation second round title.
Kauai 15-11, 15-11
Jodi Miyashiro’s service ace tied the initial set at 10-10 and a Kehau Silva solo block put the Raiders up for good. Unforced hitting errors by each squad pushed the scoreboard to 12-11 before Farren Higley and Silva connections left the home team within a point of ending the opener. Both teams failed on a pair of sideout tries before Kaua’i outside hitter Tina Moger ended matters with an off-the-tape kill.
The south-siders jumped out to an 11-5 advantage in the second set before the Warriors closed to 11-10 behind the net play of senior middle Kelly McBride and outside hitting of freshman sensation Amniesty Ragsac.
A Kapa’a passing error and Silva smash off the block pushed the lead to 13-10 but a hitting miscue gave the Warriors their final scoring opportunity. Kyrie Simeona’s left-handed drive through the double block gave Kaua’i a 14-11 margin and a Higley dink found open court to close out the match.
The Raiders were paced by great all-around performances of senior setter Courtney Doliente (28 assists, 1 kill, 5 digs) and freshman opposite hitter Tina Moeger (7 kills and 11 match-high digs). The improved play of middle Farren Higley (match-high 9 kills, 2 solo blocks, 2 block assists) allowed Silva to move to the outside and the ninth-grader responded with a stellar showing (4 kills, 1 solo block, 2 block assists). Jodi Miyashiro came off the bench to record 2 service aces and 5 digs, while Holly Iloreta (4 digs), Kellie Masuda (3 kills, 4 digs), Simeona (5 kills, 1 block assist), Alaina Villatora (2 kills, 1 block assist), Ashlie Tao (1 dig) and Anna Quibilan played well for the victors.
Kapa’a was led by the hustling play of Ihilani Yama (19 assists, 1 kill, 5 digs) and the strong swings of Ragsac (8 kills, 9 digs) and Tescily Maguire (5 kills, 6 digs). Sharlene Carillo, fresh from another cross country victory, recorded 4 kills and teammate McBride collected 3 kills and a pair of solo blocks. Uluwehi Torio hustled in the back row with 4 hard-earned digs while Ashley Valvieja (1 dig), Jaclyn Filippe, Brianne States and Kristine Ichikawa played well in their rotations on the floor.
Kauai 15-5, 15-11
The Raiders were never headed in game one as the Warriors started a revamped lineup and fell behind 10-2 on the strong outside hitting of Kamu Kawaihalau and heads-up net play of setter Aukai Dennis. A pair of unforced hitting errors and Alika Woodward’s hard putdown of a Raider overpass trimmed the lead to 10-5 before the home squad pulled away.
Kapa’a roared out to 7-0 and 9-5 advantages in the second set but the patient passing of Mason Chan and Eric Fujikawa allowed Kaua’i to catch the visitors at 10-10 and take an eventual 13-10 lead on a Futi Tavana-Dennis block assist. A Kelly Foster desperation punch of a tight set to the outside found an empty Warrior back row to go up 14-11 and a Fujikawa solo block of a Warrior dig try ended play to force next weeks playoff with the Menehune.
Dennis led the winning effort with 21 assists, 3 kills, 3 block assists and 3 digs. Kawaihalau led all hitters with 9 kills and opposite Jonathan Arakaki chipped in with 6. Futi Tavana came off the bench in the second game to put away a quintet of kills while Foster and Fujikawa each collected a pair. Chan and Warren Lee scrambled for 10 and 8 digs respectively to continuously set up Dennis assists.
Kyle Mahoney (6 assists) and Koa Yama (3 assists) distributed the ball well for the Warriors who ended their season with a 1-7 record overall. Woodward, Cale Forsen, and Billy Toy each swung for a pair of kills to lead the Kapa’a offense. Bryan Domingo and Yama each dug up 4 saves in the back row to spearhead the Warrior defensive effort.
Following the boys contest, coin flips between school representatives determined that the Kauai-Waimea boys second round playoff will be played on Wednesday, Nov. 6, at 7 p.m. at the Clem Gomes Gymnasium. The girls playoff will be contested at the Kaua’i High gymnasium on Thursday, Nov. 7, with a start time of 7 p.m.