Tuesday checkin: Mitchem practice, video link

New Rainbow Wahine Annie Mitchem met the TV media for the first time Tuesday
New Rainbow Wahine Annie Mitchem met the TV media for the first time Tuesday

Quite the crowd at this morning’s practice from the TV stations who all wanted to interview Mitchem. She was very poised.

Practice was a little later this morning and it will be a little earlier this afternoon since team will be headed out for their service project. Not sure exactly where but it has to do with feeding the less fortunate.

They were going to take the afternoon off but added this practice, probably to get Mitchem more reps.

for those of you who don’t check the HWW home page, here is video with Mitchem.

Video: Annie Mitchem joins Wahine


  1. jimmy the lock August 18, 2015 8:07 am

    Thanks for the vid. She looks…mellow.

  2. Cindy Luis August 18, 2015 9:28 am

    Practice seems to be going well. They do these defensive circle drills where coaches hit to one player who then gets the ball to the designated setter. The setters are by position so by MH, DS/L, OH, S. (Note: UH has decided to use the term Middle Hitter rather than middle blocker so we’ll go with MH instead of MB as well)

    Mitchem is working as an MH. not bad hands. Next drill has Higgins working with the MHs, Koelsch with the OH. both Maglio and Mitchem looking good on the slide, Maglio’s armswing is very quick. Mitchem really hits a heavy ball.

  3. po'okela August 18, 2015 10:59 am

    hoping she gets a shot on the outside

  4. Cindy Luis August 18, 2015 12:43 pm

    1. They’ll look at that but for the first practice it was strictly middle. Numbers worked out real well for drills. 4 middles with 1 setter and 2 passers on one court, 6 hitters, 1 setter, 2 passers on the other.

    I did shoot a video of the blockers on a step-out drill. Not sure when our web guys will get to it and be able to post it.

  5. Andrew August 18, 2015 1:18 pm

    What’s your assessment of the team thus as a whole and individual talent as compared to previous years at this time?

  6. JOJO August 18, 2015 2:26 pm

    LETS GO RAINBOW WAHINE VOLLEYBALL… Can’t wait for the start of another awesome season…

  7. warriorfan August 18, 2015 3:49 pm

    I wonder which position left, right or middle, Annie would prefer to play.

  8. surfboy August 18, 2015 4:22 pm

    If all goes well Id like to see Annie on the left.

  9. tongo August 18, 2015 4:24 pm

    #7 Don’t know but I prefer her OH only because it sounds like Maglio could probably handle the Middle – and I believe more fire power on the outside is needed. The video of CA JC Championship game online, shows Mitchem switching between OH and MH. When her team was receiving, they had Annie lined up in OH position, and when their were serving, they had her lined up in MH position. She was just totally ridiculous. Have temper my expectation but hoping she can still deliver at D1 level. Go Annie!

  10. John August 18, 2015 5:05 pm

    Aloha all!

    Sounds like a media frenzy at the Sheriff today. Can anyone give their opinion of how she looked on the court compared to some of the other girls. Does she look solid and well built, a beast, a terminator? Also height compared to other girls.
    Of past Wahine who does she remind you of most?


  11. Cindy Luis August 18, 2015 5:53 pm

    5. I like this team. very athletic and it seems that everyone committed to off season condition and this includes the freshmen who were here second session.
    The newcomers seem to be fitting in very nicely and don’t seem overwhelmed by the workouts and the new system.
    That said, I agree with what the coaches have said. That it will be tough for the freshmen to break into the starting lineup.
    As for Mitchem, she said that this morning’s practice was the hardest practice she had ever been involved with. She is a very physical player, nice hands, and is a threat from the back row.

    The question is: who plays? Glad I don’ have to make that decision. Most improved since last year are Huff and Maglio. But don’t think Huff will replace Taylor on the right and just not sure who the top middles are. Magill who has never liked the step-out was practicing it today. It’s something she’s going got have to do to stay in the lineup IMHO.

    7. Mitchem prefers middle.

    10. John, guess you’ll have to go with my assessment unless any of the other media who were there will chime in. No one in the arena outside of staff and the occasional coach who has ties to Shoji.
    You can look up the heights of all the players on the roster at hawaiiathletics.com.

    As for which Wahine she most reminds me of … from the brief time I’ve watched, more polished than Hewitt and very similar to Bown and Gustin (before her injury).

  12. John August 18, 2015 6:11 pm


    thanks for the assessment. I trust yours more than everyone else on the board. The fact that your comparison is close to Bown or Gustin says a lot. Now I’m even more stoked! We need that physical presence on the court.

    Thanks for the updates. Keep em coming!
    Mahalo.. John

  13. mauna August 18, 2015 6:22 pm

    Burns is listed back to 6’5″ on the roster. Looks better.

  14. surfboy August 18, 2015 6:27 pm

    Not that it matters but since they are being so spot on with heights why not do the same for Granato?

  15. surfboy August 18, 2015 6:38 pm

    Cindy, did Ali Longo leave the islands? Do you know if there will be a graduate assistant or volunteer coach this season?

  16. islandman August 18, 2015 6:43 pm

    Mitchem said on TV that she wanted to come here since her freshman year in high school. A reporter said she just finished up a math class yesterday. Dave said he is going to start with her playing the middle, then go from there. He has to see if she can handle the passing, if she were to play outside, etc.

  17. HawaiiMongoose August 18, 2015 6:53 pm

    Cindy, you mentioned that in this morning’s drills there were four MHs working out with one setter and six OHs working out with the other setter. Assuming the MHs were Magill, Maglio, Mitchem and Burns, that means Huff was working out with the OHs even though she’s listed on the roster as an MH. Is that correct?

  18. tongo August 18, 2015 7:00 pm

    #5 Wow, that really is saying a lot! Only seen Mitchem on videos where she appears to be explosive to the ball. Looked like a pretty good jump reach but not a great one. Appears to play very big on the net. Shows a good strong jump serve. Thanks for the insight.

  19. Cindy Luis August 18, 2015 9:20 pm

    13. SID told me yesterday it would be 6-4 for Burns. but if it’s back to 6-5 so be it.
    funny. I had a chat with Tom Pestolesi today, Mitchem’s coach at IVC. He said that Mitchem has been 6-3 for years but always wanted to listed at 6-2.

    14. don’t know. does it matter?

    15. Longo playing in Europe. Only volunteer coach is James Ka who was with them last year.

    16.Think I wrote when she committed last year about her wanting to come here since high school.
    don’t think she was finishing up a math class Monday but UH might have just finished up the paperwork on the class. I know she had one online class to finish last week. perhaps the grade didn’t get posted until Monday. Didn’t hear the interview so not sure what the reporter said. Only heard parts of the interview as I was taking the above picture.
    This was the first time that several of the TV people had come to practice.

    pretty much what I’ve written that Shoji said, that he was using her at MH then go from there. He’s pretty happy with what he has seen from her and the rest of the team so far. They know she can play middle. as I wrote above. the question is does she replace Magill or Maglio OR does it mean they try her at OH. She has said she’s more comfortable at middle but she always wants to play so to mean that means she’ll do whatever it takes to get on the court.

    17. Huff is an OH. SID hasn’t changed it yet from how she was listed last year, even though she was always training as an OH last season.

  20. mauna August 18, 2015 9:53 pm

    19. 13. Brittany Hewitt was another player, although a true 6’4 wanted and was listed at 6’3. I guess it’s a female thing. The less amazonish the more comfortable.

  21. Maverick August 18, 2015 10:26 pm

    I just saw some video of Annie on another local station’s site during today’s practice. She is very solid physically, not light framed. Probably helps her hit a hard ball. You can tell she’s got power.

    Cindy, can you check on something please? Natasha Burns just posted a photo on her Twitter account showing an x-Ray of a hand with one of the bones circled indicating a break (right ring finger). Can you find out if she sustained the injury and, if so, how long she will be out? May be a joke or someone else’s x-ray so before everyone assumes the worst, let’s get a confirmation.

  22. kapakahi August 18, 2015 10:43 pm


    Rob DeMello just reported this on KHON2 sports……


  23. Ki August 18, 2015 10:44 pm

    It’s real! She fractured her hand in practice today. Was on the news.

  24. Maverick August 18, 2015 10:46 pm

    22, 23. Thx for the quick confirm.

  25. warriorfan August 18, 2015 10:58 pm

    Too bad for Nata, I guess now she’s a good candidate for redshirting.
    Maybe Casey or Megan will train at middle now, especially if Annie will be use on the pins.

  26. Maverick August 18, 2015 11:08 pm

    It would have been nice to have Natasha challenge the hitters during practice with her height and block. Wahine will have to adjust and continue working hard.

  27. wildcard August 18, 2015 11:14 pm

    looks like dave is heavily loaded with his wahine. saw in that khon video not only annie doing jump serves but seems shoji is getting everybody else to practice the jump/spin serve, can you confirm that cindy?

    2. also cindy whats the deal with the middle hitter and middle blocker? is there really a difference of real significant tangible or particular interest?

    i know one though, russ rose likes MHs and seems to concentrate or harbor his secret with his MHs against his enemies ‘MH’ even when his opponent only has MBs (destroying byu last year). besides his setter dominating, he had nia grant and one or other middles not only hitting and blocking the ball but also ‘deflecting’ it back to the enemy court.

  28. wildcard August 18, 2015 11:23 pm

    21-23. too bad. hopefully its just the fourth finger so it heals quickly. though a finger sprint and use of opposite hand might be useful if that and dave allows it.

    maybe use opposite hand to block or deflect if not hit the ball?

  29. Kazu August 19, 2015 4:07 am

    Hope she recovers quickly.

  30. Cindy Luis August 19, 2015 7:17 am

    21. Mitchem hits a heavy ball. sorry that my video of her has not made it up yet.

    25. Burns has never gone by ‘Nata’ Been meaning to mention that to you. She prefers Tasha if you’re going to use a nickname.

    Shoji has normally only had 3 middles training so I don’t think that changes any plans if Burns has to sit out. But it’s just a ring finger. nothing that can’t be taped or played with. All depends if she is cleared to practice/play. They’ll know more after she sees the doctor Wednesday.

    For now, Mitchem is in the middle.

    Very surprised she tweeted it. Only because UH has been very careful about HIPAA which deals with health information privacy.

    27. there is no difference but they’ve decided to use MH which is what many colleges do. doesn’t change the ‘job description.” ‘-) But it is more accurate since the middles are very active in the offense.

  31. Ron August 19, 2015 7:24 am

    Thanks Cindy, this is the most fun we have had in a long time. Your bird’s eye reports make my day.

  32. Cindy Luis August 19, 2015 7:37 am

    Burns will not be practicing this morning. She is seeing a specialist to see how bad it is. Will know more this afternoon.

  33. Cindy Luis August 19, 2015 8:01 am


    new thread up for Wednesday

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