Saturday, Dec. 9, 2023 |
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KAPAA — The Warrior girls have not won since the regular season started, but the losing streak has finally ended.
Kapaa High School’s varsity girls volleyball team defeated Kauai High School, 3-1, at the Clem Gomes Gym in Kapaa on Tuesday night.
“It’s been a while,” said Kapaa head coach Evan Costa. “Finally. They just took care of their role. They always try to do too much. In all these games that they played, they tried to do more than what’s expected. That’s actually what showed up in the second set tonight —we reverted back to doing more. Finally tonight, they just, everybody did their part.”
For Kapaa (2-7 KIF, 1-2 2nd round), this was the team’s first win since defeating Island School in straight sets in the Kauai Interscholastic Federation opener on Aug. 30. The Warriors beat the Red Raiders on Tuesday— 25-18, 22-25, 25-17 and 25-10.
“I think now, it’s a really big push for our team,” said Warriors senior outside hitter Keani Tolenoa. “It’s a confidence booster.”
She added: “Our drive to want to win (was the difference). When we lose a point, just side-out right away. And backing each other up, that was the main point.”
Kapaa started the fourth set with a 10-2 run. The Warriors took a double-digit lead on a block for a point by senior middle Leipua Kaui.
Warriors senior setter Rachel Pleas later on scored the match-winning point for the 25-10 final in the fourth to seal the win.
“They just played a little bit more steady than Kauai High,” Costa said. “I know Kauai High is better than that, definitely better than that. But on our side, they just took care of the ball. We finally took care of the ball. We did the simple things — the pass, the set, the coverage, just the little things. And then we were able to pull it out.
“I just wanted them to actually finish. We’re very terrible at finishing (matches) this whole season,” he continued. “We couldn’t finish. We would always let up and revert back to bad habits. Finally, it went our way tonight.”
Kauai High (4-5 KIF, 1-2 2nd round) faced an 11-6 deficit in the second set. The Red Raiders then went on a 9-3 run to take a 15-14 lead — junior middle Hailey Iha scored the go-ahead point on a block.
The Red Raiders maintained a slim lead through to the 25-22 final in the set.
Kauai High School varsity head coach Kehaulani Regidor wasn’t available for comment following the match.
Tolenoa lead Kapaa with 16 kills, including the game-winner in the opening set, as well as six digs for Kapaa. Pleas finished with 21 assists, 11 kills and five digs. Kaui finished with five kills. Sophomore middle Talia Washington had nine kills and three digs.
Iha finished with 10 kills for Kauai High. Sophomore outside hitter Maria Gojkovic had five kills. Sophomore setter Vanessa Alcones had 14 assists and a dig. Sophomore libero Darien Kealoha-Albarado had 11 digs and two aces.
Kapaa also won the junior varsity match, 2-1 — 25-20, 25-18 and 12-25.
Kapaa will play at Island School, and Kauai will play at Waimea on Friday. The JV matches will begin 5 p.m. and the varsity will follow.
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