Alvin Katahara will succeed Don Weir in the role of executive director of Na Koa, the Warrior football team’s booster club. Katahara still will remain as a fund-raiser for the athletic department.
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About a month ago, I asked UH volleyball coach Charlie Wade about an outside hitter from Le Jardin Academy. He nearly single-handedly helped Le Jardin beat my son’s team the night before.
After a while, Wade was able to identify the player. The delay? In local boys volleyball, players are identified more with their clubs than their high schools.
And that is why many here will root for Stanford in today’s NCAA championship match. It’s not just because seven players, including four starters are from Hawaii. It’s because the Cardinal plays Hawaii volleyball, which means an emphasis on the serve-and-pass game. A lot of it has to do with beach volleyball, which forces every player, including middle blockers, to develop all of the volleyball skills. Another has to do with Hawaii’s club programs — Erik Shoji, Kawika Shoji, Brad Lawson and Spencer McLachlin have played with or against each other for more than a decade.
Stanford’s success begins with its passing. Erik Shoji, of course, is the nation’s best libero. But because McLachlin and Lawson are accurate — and tall — passers, Shoji often can play middle back while the others can protect the corners and pass tipped spikes. Steady ball-handling is synonymous with Hawaii volleyball, and that will be spotlighted during today’s match.
By the way, Kalani Soeda was Le Jardin’s scoring machine. And he was a great passer, too.
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Happy birthday to two special people — Lorna (wife of the late Long Time UH Fan, whom we miss greatly) and Gwen Kekaula, my former Advertiser colleague. Wishing both of you a wonderful day.
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KITV sports director Robert Kekaula writes about Nalani, a fellow Kamehameha Schools graduate and member of Na Leo Pilimehana:
I heard “North Shore Serenade” the first day the album came out. I said to myself, “Thank you, Nalani. This song rocks.”
I like her voice. Her voice on “North Shore Serenade” and “Poetry Man” makes me weak in the knees.
Everybody has their definition of “It.” Nalani’s “It’ is “North Shore Serenade” and “Poetry Man.” Even though most people recognize her for “Local Boys” — that’s her baby — “North Shore Serenade and “Poetry Man” take the cake.
My iPhone has some iPod action. I put those two songs on. I list them under “Kick Ass.”