UCLA-Hawaii rewind

Some may disagree but IMHO it was a very winnable match.
Hawaii did a pretty good job on Lowe, who was averaging 7.07 kps coming in. She finished with 17, 7 in Set 3, a couple late.

On the previous thread serving was mentioned.
Stats were identical for the teams 2 aces, 7 errors. the problem is the 2 errors that will be remembered will be the 2 by Manu – Olevao that ended Sets 1 and 2.

From Shoji: he didn’t want to use Taylor tonight but got into a rotation where they couldn’t sideout and only had 2 attackers. Said she’s not completely in game shape but she is cleared to play and she will. Probably start Sunday but he’s going to see what happens in practice Saturday morning.

blocking stats even as well 12-12. Hawaii out dug the Bruins 52-42, thought Mendoza played an excellent game 18 digs. Manu-Olevao with 10.

Manu-Olevao with 13 kills, was aced twice. Greeley with 11 kills, five blocks, 2 solo. Magill with 8 kills, 7 blocks.

Did ask Shoji about putting Ponce in to serve in Set 3 when it would have been Manu-Olevao for a third time at 24-23. He said he didn’t want to put that pressure on her again.

I’m guessing Sunday’s match will be younger. Manu-Olevao will be out and they need another OH. Would not be surprised to see Huff start and Maglio see some time.


  1. rayson September 12, 2014 11:20 pm

    I think something is wrong with this blog. I’m only able to access this post from the link in the Star-Advertiser site but it doesn’t show up in the Hawaii Warrior World site. This is not the first time this had happened either.

  2. LanaiBoy September 12, 2014 11:25 pm

    I thought that Hawaii did well in the serving department except, of course, the unfortunate service errors by Tai Manu-Olevao that resulted in the loss of the first two sets. I think that sometimes Tai gets a bit overanxious and tries to hit too hard instead of smart because the team relies on her a lot. With Nikki Taylor at full strength I don’t think she will face the same level of pressure. She made lots of errors tonight, which is uncharacteristic of her most of this season.

  3. rayson September 12, 2014 11:40 pm

    I agree with you about this being a winnable match. It still amazes me why Shoji is so darn stubborn or so conservative when it comes to the lineup. I don’t know if starting Huff in place of Long would have changed the results but it was certainly at this point worth a try especially given the height that UCLA has on the outside.

    On the plus side, at the end of the third I think we got a glimpse of how good this team is going to be with Nikki back in the lineup.

    The question that’s bothering me right now is if Nikki wasn’t injured and had started the season would we even be seeing Greely on the court? I think it would be Nikki and Tai on the left and Ginger/Keani on the right with Greely being subbed in (too late) like he’s doing with Huff right now.

  4. rayson September 12, 2014 11:43 pm

    1: Apparently I spoke to soon.

  5. warriorfan September 13, 2014 12:05 am

    3. I agree that he’s being really stubborn this season, I don’t really get it, it’s a rebuilding year why be so hesitant to try the youngsters? I really want to see more of Maglio and Koeslch.

    personally I hope Nikki does not play against USF, or that tokyo team or Northern Arizona. Unless absolutely needed. Rest her and make sure she’s ready to go for conference instead.

    I just do not understand why she didn’t play more against UCLA, when she was actually needed. UH should be able to beat USF even without Nikki and Tai IMO.

  6. warriorfan September 13, 2014 12:11 am

    I just looked up Annie Mitchem’s stats so far this season and they are off the charts. 4.12 kills per set at .606 hitting percentage, unreal!
    blocking isn’t as strong at just 1.21 per game but digs at 2.94 is great for a middle.

  7. warriorfan September 13, 2014 12:25 am

    Olevao is hitting about .207 for the season, she is a very high error type of player. It wasn’t just tonight. However she has improved over last season when she hit under .190 most of the season.

  8. tossup September 13, 2014 2:33 am

    well tai hopefully can get relieved (rested up) not playing until half a week later vs the queenseis. im sure that had to be really killing her that set 1 and 2 haunted the lady bows worse than vs san diego last year. tai clearly was under the pressure gauge and tried to overcompensate in set 2 with a bit more power. knowingly tai is a better jump server than floater, dave should of realized that and shouldnt have gambled on that in either set especially set 2. in such a case a choke could of been prevented, you want accuracy rather than power (i wouldnt care if you underhand served it – it will just lob over the net and down into the court and no its not a freeball, its dead accurate).

    higgins setting was also kind of lackluster and koelsch, adolpho and magill were underutilized as well as taylor.

    very beatable match. uclas lowe may be a bullet but is pretty stoppable (shes a bullet not a shell). it is no players fault especially tai but it was rather shoji being shoji rather than being tactical including using long close quarters.

  9. Do September 13, 2014 3:27 am

    I’ve witnessed these (growing pains) many times over the years (forever a fan). CoachDave has a plan (don’t always agree with his methods) and , who am I to second guess him? He believes in his players and coaches ! Whatever the outcome , I remain a loyal fan of Wahine Volleyball! Ladies , trust in yourselves , learn from your mistakes , and play on (and THANK YOU) for being WAHINE—GO BOWS

  10. Willie September 13, 2014 4:40 am

    On the Mainland & just read about the close., tough match with the Lady Bruins.

    Watching replay of Florida @ Stanford women’s VB match. All I can say is Wow! Really do not see how the Wahine can match up at all at this time. Hoping that when NT returns the gap will lessen. Those two top ranked teams are tall, athletic, skilled and powerful all over.

  11. tossup September 13, 2014 5:09 am

    8. i ought to add even though she had errors in the crucial set points, to tais credit she did her serving duty bravely and she was going to make the jump serve in the 3rd set match point until dave subbed ponce in for the job (subbing in his senior serving specialist to take pressure off tai). so jump serving and risking high for high reward in the most pivotal time wouldnt be bad even if it should lead to defeat, though the key would be not leading up to that in the first place (aint it somewhat coincident tai gets the serve set point 1, 2, and match point 3?) think coach dave needs to change his serving lineup (or whatever that order that is that i cant think about right now)

  12. Hot September 13, 2014 6:43 am

    10. Ponce is not a senior serving specialist. She’s a redshirt sophomore. She and Olevao joined the team at the same time, in 2012.

    By the way, Ponce looked like she was about to throw up when Shoji put her in to serve for Olevao.

  13. LC September 13, 2014 6:49 am

    1 – rayson many have had the same experience, technical related I guess although it seems to happen only on game night.

    This was an easy match to analyze, choked at the most crucial time but now we get to listen to that old cliche ” it will only make us better”. Do you get tired of old clich’es like raw and it’s a young team,I do. 🙂

    Great to see Nikki back in, hope she is feeling good his morning.

    My winner winner chicken dinner lineup going forward.

    Tai Manu Olevao
    Kalei Greeley
    Nikki Taylor
    Kalei Adolpho
    Olivia Magill
    Sarah Mendoza

  14. islandman September 13, 2014 7:08 am

    Sealey out coached the Wahine coaches or UCLA out executed the Wahine ? E.g. ,they neutralized Magill .

  15. tongo September 13, 2014 9:00 am

    12. OK, I will bite, and say it ~this lost will only make us better- and you know, this is a raw and young team! Do you feel better? Just kidding! Everyone is a bit frustrated but also everyone including the coaches, pundits, and commentators have said this is a team under construction – and even Nikki Taylor on her OC Sport post-game interview last night said that the growing pains will still be going on through October. So yeah, it is not going to be pretty – for now. Nevertheless, we can also all sense how good this team is going to be. Love watching the girls!

  16. connor September 13, 2014 9:24 am

    Dave Shoji is so stubborn with ginger long. he leaves long in for two games when her stats are essentially 1 kill (a dink), 3 or 4 blocked shots and one long OB on her hitting attempts. She should not be starting and Huff should start on Sunday. I think that he is being contrary because everyone else can see that she is not starting material. he does not even let her serve know.

  17. AdmrVT September 13, 2014 9:34 am

    15. With Nikki being activated, the OH and OPP will likely be Olevao, Greeley and Taylor.

    Regardless, while Huff has a lot of potential, she was an emergency OH. She came in as a MB. Cannot yet terminate consistently as an OH, but can set a block.

  18. seasider September 13, 2014 9:49 am

    No pun intended, but coach Shoiji out coached himself.

    LOL…In football, once a KEY player is cleared medically to play, that KEY player is in the game.

    Nicky Taylor should have been in the game from the opening set. With Greeley the only effective outside hitter, and Long, Manu-Olevau not making much of a dent, UCLA defenders keyed on Olivia Magill. Clearly Nicky Taylor (playing all-rotation) would’ve been the difference maker. Her ability to put the ball down, would’ve taken a lot of heat off of Olivia Magill.

    And…clearly (no pun intended) Long (definitely giving the best she can) is not ready for this level of play. 6-3 Huff should’ve started in her place. Huff’s 6-3 presence, and athleticism in the front row will be needed in conference play to spell Manu-Olevau when she’s having an off night. Until Tai can consistently hit in the .225-.250% range, a game tested Megan Huff will be a plus.

    Ditto with Maglio, she needs some extended game experience, to spell Adolpho when her game is off. To date, Kalie has had only to two creditable games, the open versus Ohio, and last night versus UCLA.

    Even without Nicky Taylor, all three sets could’ve gone Hawaii’s way, i.e. in opportune serving errors, and unforced hitting errors that turned the momentum around, etc.


    UCLA 45Kills 16E 116TA .250PCT 42A 2SA 7SE 2RE 42Digs 2BS 20BA 4BE 1BHE

    Hawaii 45Kills 21E 117TA .205PCT 42A 2SA 7SE 2RE 52Digs 4BS 16BA 4BE 2BHE

    Bottom line, except for Tomorrow’s game versus San Francisco, this should be the lineup for the rest of the season:
    Outside Nicky Taylor 6-3 ½ and Kalei Greeley 6-3 (both will be all-rotation and primary receivers)
    Opposite Tai Manu-Olevau 6-1
    Middle Olivia Magill 6-1, Kalei Adolpho 6-1
    Setter Taylor Higgins 5-9
    Libero Sarah Medoza
    DS Savanah Kahakai

    For Sundays game: 6-3 Megan Huff for Manu-Olevau.

  19. Ron September 13, 2014 10:17 am

    With Nikki back, Shoji will have more flexibility to use Kendra in a 6/2 because he wont need to spend so much of his sub allotment on the right side. Higgins is slowly improving but she needs to be pushed. In every match that we have lost, if we switched setters with the other team we would have won IMHO.

  20. cocobean September 13, 2014 10:29 am

    It’s been often said that Hawaii volleball fans are the best most knowledgeable fans in the country. This blog proves it. Where else in the country are there more fans that know more about volleyball than the coach? Good thing they’re willing to share their knowledge with him. Just hope Shoji’s not a stubborn old dog that can’t learn new tricks.

  21. blunite September 13, 2014 10:29 am

    UH direly needs 3 attackers up front, and sets to Magill (who touches 10’7″) need work. With UH’s system height is a necessity for hitters to beat the double block. Long and Passi lack the height and jumping ability to be successful in this system. (Both would flourish in a faster offense.) Being able to tool the block is their only hope, which has not come to pass. RECOMMENDATION: UH uses a plain vanilla offense but Shoji would be wise to implement a double quick or even X series of plays.

  22. Warriorfan September 13, 2014 10:42 am

    19. Jeez enough with the sarcasm already

    Watching the replay, I’m just really disappointed in the setting , It was probably Higgin’s worst match yet. disappointing she’s not getting better as the season goes on. Magill got about two sets all match that were on the money.

    I think it’s time to see more of Koelsch.

  23. islandman September 13, 2014 11:10 am

    What is “O” in the volleyball stats ? Third column from the right.


  24. Not an Expert September 13, 2014 2:27 pm

    #21 good observation. slow offense style needs big and strong players not quick small players.

  25. bg September 13, 2014 3:05 pm

    Thank-you Mr. Bean! @20. Your humor was delicious. I too love reading this blog where coaching wannabe’s spend their time giving their analyses and trying to persuade others just how much better things would be if only Shoji would follow their suggestions/criticisms. There’s just a lot of entertainment here…thanks

  26. max13 September 13, 2014 3:12 pm

    #23 – islandman, the “0” in the box score is the number of times a player received serve. So Tai Manu-Olevao, for example, had 23 attempts with 2 reception errors (as in she was aced).

  27. vbfan September 13, 2014 3:13 pm

    On the Leahey and Leahey show Dave admitted that he is very hard on Higgins, maybe a little too hard. He said that she is not where they want her to be yet, but is confident she will get there.

    I’m not expecting any changes, Dave decides a starting setter he tends to stick with them. From listening to the interview it sounded like Higgins is going to be the setter for the rest of the season.

  28. Cindy Luis September 13, 2014 4:32 pm

    Went to practice this morning
    Taylor said she’s 100 percent. no inflammation, no soreness.
    As for the starting lineup for Sunday, just be prepared to see Long start.
    But Greeley will move to O1. Asked Shoji what is keeping Huff out. He said she was too inexperienced to be there on a regular basis as she is still learning to be an OH.
    Agreed that Adolpho was inconsistent and they need to make the effort to get her the ball more. Said Maglio is improving

    As for the comment above that he’s so stubborn that he wouldn’t have been playing Greeley as much if Taylor had been available. Don’t think he’s stubborn, he sees these players every day in practice, and he definitely isn’t blind.
    It was obvious from the preseason practices that Greeley was going to be hard to keep off the court. He may have been overcautious after she rolled her ankle the second day in and retweaked it a couple of days ago.

  29. Wop ur jaws September 13, 2014 5:09 pm

    Cindy. From what you said, you also alluded to Dave’s stubbornness, but for me, the stubbornness I mentioned previously wasn’t about keeping Greeley off the court, but it was about, 1. Higgins starting even in sets where the whole entire arena that are knowledgeable about setting and setters knew she was out of gas which did cause a lot of points lost specifically against Oregon, Arizona State, St. John’s. The observation I made was to bring Koelsch in and then have them share the position, and when the block is not working out when Higgins is blocking right side. Of course Higgins did get some blocks throughout play on the right, but I’m saying having Koelsch set front row during the sets that Higgins is on fumes would not be a disaster, since she can block and brings height in that position. 2. Starting Long/Passi over the freshmen in various positions only having to remove them with the freshmen anyways. That was covered by your report. The question to Dave’s stubbornness is specifically about those two items. Maybe it’s something you can ask him about it. I know people will say, that mistakes happened even when the freshmen came in at times, that was true, but at the same time, Long/ Passi had more errors being in the match. My point was, as you mentioned that Dave feels that Higgins is not where they want her to be, but he is confident that she will get there could be applied to Koelsch or Huff or Maglio as well. If Dave gave them the chance to play and kept them in there throughout the growing pains, then I think the team would be so much better.

  30. idk September 13, 2014 5:55 pm

    How does one combat inexperience? by given playing time. How does Dave expect Huff to gain experience if he doesn’t give her the oppurtunity. I understand that she has been given some playing time but a proven ineffective hitter with 3 years of experience over an inexperienced frosh with potential and height seems counterproductive.

  31. tossup September 13, 2014 6:01 pm

    12. im referring to most senior serving specialist (ds/designated server). its ponce, anderson, baby g, and kahakai (not counting mendoza since she is libero and she was needed elsewhere). shoji was dependent on her seniority/experience to make the do or die serve in place of tai even though yes she was about to throw up.

    16. if long was to be used, she should of been used backrow, where her experience at seeing the block (from beach) and high velocity swing can be used to tool the block. she should not be used close quarters front row where she has to dink or get smothered by the bigger block. her defense seems to have gotten a bit better this game though just not her attack for the obvious physics reasons.

    you know watching the game again on ocsports there were some elements of interest

    keys to the match for hawai’i being ‘2 up on lowe and bring a stepladder’ – thats a shoddy strategy… how bout HALO – high altitude LOWE opening, blocking against lowe wasnt the problem, it either is you cant stop her bullet or you do by chance. instead it should of been offensive high hands like tai did especially well in and this is where long would be useful.

    na wahine just has some bad luck in either being 2nd game in the tourney or green wahine (in solid/dark green uniforms) lacking peak performance. compare aesthetically their solid/snowy white uniforms, the snow wahine look like shock troops compared to their opponent thus far.

    ucla had a greek juggernaut in their serve (left hand jumper in olga)

    tai could of made her jump serve in set point for set 1…if she had hit it harder enough.

    pesky net – affects both sides but in the way of service errors and net violations…mostly bad luck to the bows. remind me why is it that mens volleyball net violations happen..whats it..on the bottom of the net only? i guess women are expected to be nimbler and avoid the net at all costs while ball is in play. ncaa changed something regarding net contact for womens volleyball this year but the rule change appears to be moot.

    bad set – a couple or few by both higgins and koelsch resulting in double hit. in case of indecision or indirection including because of too many players in one area or the impracticality of setting it to a specific player why not simply set the ball completely vertical in the air for someone maybe backrow to attack it? yes higgins especially needs to be pushed.

  32. islandman September 13, 2014 6:03 pm

    #26 — max13, thanks for the answer. Why not use ” RS ” ?

  33. tossup September 13, 2014 6:12 pm

    28. cindy if long is starting. tell dave to use her more defensive in the back row especially versus opponents bigger than her. her beach experience at seeing the block and her high velocity swing should be able to tool and deflect off large blocks high into the air from the back row rather than close quarters front row against larger players.

  34. Cindy Luis September 13, 2014 6:22 pm

    33. you may email him if you want to tell him something.

  35. Cindy Luis September 13, 2014 6:25 pm

    29. only alluded to the ‘stubbornness’ because others did. I wrote I didn’t think he was stubborn, that he sees the players every day.
    Specifically asked him about Huff, Maglio and Koelsch. He said he doesn’t feel like they are ready

    Koelsch is taller than Higgins, a better blocker, but her location isn’t as good as Higgins’

  36. Cindy Luis September 13, 2014 6:27 pm

    Will be on tomorrow before the match. Good night

  37. tongo September 13, 2014 8:11 pm

    Am still amazed about all the posters who not only see the situation better than the coaches who work with the players everyday but clearly know more than the three coaches who also happens to be All Americans.

  38. Volleyman September 14, 2014 10:43 am

    Stop insulting Dave. Do u guys these girls practice every day? He has the experience and knowledge of 40 years. Do u have that?

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