Pivotal 2-week stretch on tap for Wahine

Leah Salanoa, seen here against Cal State Northridge, and her sister Lahni are on the cusp of breaking into the UH career top 10 in 3s made. / Photo by Cindy Ellen Russell, Star-Advertiser

UPDATE III: UH had a chance to build some serious momentum coming off its road sweep but instead came out flat against UC Riverside on Wednesday. The Highlanders built a 20-point lead behind Jannon Otto’s 22 points, but then the Rainbow Wahine rallied furiously to within three in the final seconds. Tia Kanoa’s long 3 to tie was just long and UCR pulled out the 60-55 win.

UPDATE II: UH swept its two-game road trip with a 47-35 win at UC Santa Barbara on Saturday.

UPDATE: The Rainbow Wahine bounced back in a big way from their home loss to Cal State Northridge, ringing up a 71-54 win at Cal Poly on Thursday.

The next four games — over a two-week stretch beginning today — have the potential to set the direction of the Hawaii women’s basketball team for the remainder of the season.

Are the Rainbow Wahine the team that put things together and knocked off defending champion UC Davis at the Stan Sheriff Center? Or are they the group that scored 29 points in a disappointing home loss to Cal State Northridge?

If they’re the former, they’ll be in position to compile some wins coming up and establish themselves firmly among the Big West pack, and maybe even vie for a top-four berth and an opening-round bye in the conference tournament. If they’re the latter, well … things could get rough.


UH (5-11, 1-2 Big West) faces the bottom three teams in the conference — who currently have a combined league record of 3-8 — four times over these two weeks. It begins today at Cal Poly (4-11, 1-3) and continues Saturday at UC Santa Barbara (4-12, 1-2). Next week, UH hosts UC Riverside (7-11, 1-3) and Cal Poly.

You can view today’s 5 p.m. (HST) game on Big West TV live streaming.


A couple of notes:
>> Senior sisters Lahni and Leah Salanoa are very close to cracking the Wahine career top 10 in 3s made. Lahni has 89 triples (eight this season) while Leah has 84 career (21 this season). The No. 10 mark is held Crystal Lee with 90. In attempts, Lahni has 255 career and Leah 260. The No. 10 in that category is shared by Amy Sanders and Lee with 276. Additionally, Lahni’s .349 career 3-point percentage would land her at No. 10 if she can hold that mark. No. 10 there is held by Neicee Crump at .343.

>> Saturday’s 2 p.m. game at UCSB’s Thunderdome should be interesting in that UH assistant coach Alex Delanian did a one-year stint with the Gauchos last year after leaving the Wahine following the 2016-17 season. Delanian rejoined UH last offseason, so this will be his first trip back to Isla Vista since.

COMMENTS

  1. islandman January 24, 2019 7:38 pm

    It was good to have Lahni and Leah on the team for 4 years.


  2. cappie the dog January 24, 2019 9:08 pm

    14 turnovers.

    That’s why.

    All that matters is 2-2 in conference. Only a game-and-a-half back. Can’t split this road trip. Beat the Gauchos and they can stay in the upper tier coming home. What the heck. They already have a win against the first place team(UC-Davis). Hawaii has three losses with a one point deficit and a conference road game with a four point game deficit. They could easily be 10-7(3-1). This team is better than people think. American is tied for first in the Patriot League. Utah is Utah. Stanford is Stanford. UNLV is 3-3 in the MWC. It’s only the 29 points against UC-Davis, a game they held the opponent under 50…man, that’s weird…that made you want to turn your eyes away. They have a lot more offense than last year. For starters, Kanoa is shooting 46%. Limiting turnovers, that’s the name of the game. It’s the Big West. Nobody really shoots the ball well. Hawaii can win the whole thing if they take care of the ball. Easier said than done, I guess. Really, when you’re there in person, from their perspective, because you’re sitting behind them, you sometimes don’t know what they’re looking at.


  3. Kazu January 26, 2019 2:34 pm

    Big west is so crappy! Can’t get live stream and if you go to the schools website to try and get stats of the game, you can’t even get that.


  4. cappie the dog January 27, 2019 11:47 am

    Utah is currently ranked #21. I predict they will climb to #12. Led by Megan Huff’s 17 points and 13 rebounds, they upset Stanford.

    Huff is going to the WNBA.

    When Hawaii makes it to the NCAAs, they could be the #16 seed and Utah could be the #1 seed.


  5. Nomu1001 January 27, 2019 6:40 pm

    Team has improved over the last few weeks. So, coaches deserve credit, players need to keep improving. Noticeable improvements in fundamentals. Wonder what their practices look like, how much emphasis on shooting and making baskets?

    Congrats on road sweep. But, imho, they can and have to do better.


  6. cappie the dog January 30, 2019 2:48 pm

    Megan Huff is projected to go in the third round of the WNBA Draft according to ESPN.com. 33rd pick to Connecticut.

    Somebody on Warrior Beat compared her game to Bill Walton during her sophomore year. Good call.

    Oh, wait, that’s me.

    No. It wasn’t. But I agreed.


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