Bad News ‘Bows prevail with defense, unity, maturity

Sanctions, schmanctions.

Anyone who watched this team last year put negative off-court news and drama aside and just play winning basketball is not surprised Hawaii handled giant killer Northern Iowa 68-52 on Tuesday in the first round of the Diamond Head Classic.

Remember, the core of this group lost its head coach just days before the start of last season and went out and won 22 games anyway.

First-year head coach Eran Ganot said he could tell as the day progressed that the team would stick together and be focused and perform like business as usual, despite a “long and unique day” after the results were revealed of an NCAA investigation that started more than two years ago and before most of the current ‘Bows were in UH uniforms.

They remind me of the line from the old Boston song: “I’ve gotten used to bad news.”

The underclassmen — and especially the juniors — had to be disappointed with the NCAA’s announcement that the Rainbow Warriors would be ineligible for postseason play in 2016-17.

But they didn’t play like it.

They used their trademark defensive pressure to grab a 35-24 halftime lead. Then, after the Panthers — who have beaten North Carolina and Iowa State — cut the lead to four, Aaron Valdes went on a scoring spree with some spectacular highlight film-worthy moves.

Another junior, Stefan Jovanovic was steady and strong in the post with 11 points and a game-high 9 rebounds off the bench.

Isaac Fleming provided the coup de gras with four consecutive steals to blow it open after UNI point guard Wes Washpan fouled out.

Fleming, the flamboyant but erratic sophomore, seems to be getting his talent harnessed better with every game.

And he doesn’t let the officials get to him as much. On Tuesday the refs blew a call that clearly should’ve gone his way, calling what should have been a charge against an opponent a block on him.

Last year, Fleming probably would’ve argued and perhaps gotten a technical foul, and then who knows what happens after that since the game was still close.

This time, he just moved on to the next play.

And the Bad News ‘Bows won, going away.

Oklahoma on Wednesday will be a tougher test. UH will likely need to do better than 8 of 27 from 3-point land while continuing the steady 77 pct free-throw shooting to have a chance against the No. 3 team in the country.


  1. Haleakala December 23, 2015 5:46 am

    That was a great gsme by the Bows.

  2. Haleakala December 23, 2015 5:47 am

    That also was a Great GAME by the Bows.

  3. warriorrebel December 23, 2015 5:47 am

    I think the maturity of Flemming is really helping this team out a lot. Last year he would mouth off and cost the team. Sometimes that bad attitude would rub off on his teammates and they would make costly mistakes. This year Flemming’s great attitude has been a plus for the team and his teammates. There’s is not as much whining like last year when there is a bad call and there has been a lot of them! You can see it in the play of Q, Bobbit, Janks, they just move on and don’t let it get in their heads and play through the diversity. I think Flemming will be a great leader next year, if he sticks around (because of ban). Hope Ganot can keep this team together for next year. This is good Warrior team, but I think next year would be special, if not for the post season ban. Go Warriors!!!

  4. innocent observer December 23, 2015 10:42 am

    ms. Paterson should have been fired, as she was just as much to blame for the basketball fiasco with Arnold. just because she did not have a working relationship with Arnold, she tried to get back at him. this is not how a professional should be, she should be able to put her personal differences aside and work with Arnold. she admitted that she was lax in her oversight of the men’s basketball program. hence, she was not doing her job and was part of the problem and cost UH million dollars or so and all of the sanctions imposed by the ncaa. the reason the president fired Arnold without cause because he knew that Arnold was not the only one to blame for the problems, the compliance officer contributed to the problems. how can uh keep an employee who failed to do her job and then promoted her. this is insane.

  5. hitmanhart December 23, 2015 12:17 pm

    this is a nice team that can go far in the post season !! sad how the ncaa comes down on the small schools !! and hand slaps on the big schools !!
    so if i was coach Eran Ganot i would use this as a tool for this year !! its all or not thing !! then next year red shirt my juniors if can or move them to BYU HAWAII OR UH HILO for next year and win it all over there then move them back UH HAWAII for there senior year !! to make a statement !!

  6. amela December 23, 2015 2:36 pm

    Congrats to Flemming and the team for a great win! He’s grown so much since last year, good for him.

  7. auntyz December 23, 2015 7:06 pm

    Congrats on the oh so close to a huge win over OK

  8. Annoddah Dave January 1, 2016 5:10 pm

    DR: “Bad News Bows” that is stuff for a T-Shirt that fans could wear this season.

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