LIHUE — Kapaa High School’s varsity boys volleyball team defeated Kauai in straight sets, 26-24, 25-22 and 25-19, Friday night at Kauai High School.
The win forced playoff games to determine the Kauai Interscholastic Federation season’s first round winner.
“I think that was a statement win. We needed that to put a statement that we’ve arrived and we’re clicking,” said Warriors head coach Kapule Kaona. “This is what we expected from the get-go, but it’s good to see us grow into what we’re at right now. We’re moving forward and we hope we don’t stay in this spot or digress.”
“I think that was the easiest game I had to coach because I really didn’t have to instruct much,” he added. “The boys were doing what we were learning in practice, and the boys felt that same way as well.”
Warriors senior outside hitter Rudy Agoot also said he feels the team is starting to gel.
“We’re a young team. We had to get used to playing together,” the Warriors senior said. “Just talking, communication and team effort. Everybody pulled through.”
If Kauai had won, the team would have won the season’s first round. Red Raiders co-head coach Lorna Basquez said the team was off its game by recent changes, but declined to elaborate.
“It was kind of a surprise, and I think the boys just let it get to them,” she said. “We gave it away. We needed to work harder and come out on top, and we didn’t.”
“That’s part of the learning process for young men — for any of us when we grow up. They got to learn how to handle changes,” she added.
Agoot had 13 kills, including the game-winner in the second set, and a block. Sophomore middle hitter Carson Schmick had six kills and a block, and junior opposite hitter Max Nice had six kills and an ace for Kapaa.
Senior middles Tyler Fernandez had nine kills and four blocks for the Red Raiders. Senior middle Lii Colipano also had nine kills and senior outside hitter Kalawaia Judd had seven.
In the night’s other game, Waimea beat Island School in straight sets, 25-20, 25-13 and 25-17.
“I was able to get in some of my backup boys. They got the playing time that was much need to advance in the sport,” said Waimea head coach Alton Shimatsu about the game at Island School (0-6 KIF). He was present for the coin flips that followed the game at Kauai High.
“That was good for us. Our first team supported them and helped them through it,” he said.
Kapaa, Kauai and Waimea were all tied with a 4-2 KIF record at the end of the night.
Waimea hosted Kauai in the first playoff game Saturday night. Results were not available by press time. The winner of that match will host Kapaa at 6:30 p.m. Monday to determine the first round’s winner.