Waiākea sweeps Baldwin Seabury Hall takes down Kohala
Christenson ignites rally as Kamehameha tops Roosevelt
No. 1 seed Punahou rolls past Pearl City
'Iolani makes point in sweep of Kamehameha-Hawaii
• Photo gallery: State prep volleyball
by Stanley Lee
Advertiser Staff Writer
The energy Waiākea lacked last night will certainly be there today.
The Warriors were quick, methodical, but less than intense in their 25-19, 25-15, 25-18 win over fourth-seeded Baldwin in the quarterfinals of the New City Nissan Boys Volleyball State Championships at McKinley's Student Council Gym.
Waiākea (16-3) advances to play defending champion and top-seeded Punahou (21-0) in tonight's 7 o'clock semifinal.
"Our lineup is pretty good, our setting was really well, but we needed a little bit more energy," Waiākea coach Ecko Osorio said. "I'm sure they're going to come out with more energy tomorrow night against the No. 1 team in the nation. We're going to be more fired up. Hopefully, we can get something going early."
The energy level may have been down for Waiākea, but it still controlled the match, taking less than a hour to seal the win. Clayton Morante Jr. had 16 kills and finished with a .407 hitting percentage and Aaron Aweau had eight kills, hitting from the left, right, and throwing a few dump sets over the net. The level of play was nothing like what the Bears saw in winning the Maui Interscholastic League title.
"Waiākea is really good; we had trouble stoping their big hitters," said Baldwin coach Kalei Houpo. "That was our focus going in, to stop their balls, not block it, but stop the balls so our back row can dig it.
"They're a really good team," Houpo added. "We haven't seen a team like that this year, only (Hawai'i Baptist) when we played them in the preseason. Real tough."
The blocking of Aweau and Donovan Ho'ohuli helped the Warriors pull away early in Set 1, and Morate had four straight kills to help the Warriors pull away midway through Sets 2 and 3.
"The defense and serve-receive passing is making a difference, helping us run our offense," said Morante, who pointed out that his team's middle attack kept the outsides open.
Timmy Pang had eight kills, and TK Loewen and Jordan Villanueva had five each for the Bears (11-2), who play Pearl City (14-4) in today's consolation match.
LEILEHUA DEF. LAHAINALUNA 25-21, 25-12
KillsóLei: Brock Paikai 9, Jonathan Daubenspeck 5. Lah: Clifford Li 3.
KALANI DEF. WAI'ANAE 20-25, 25-16, 15-11
KillsóKaln: Chase Suzumoto 9, Angelo Berardy 7, Jacob Peterson 5, Brook Parker 5. Wain: June Narag 9, Johnovan Tyrell 6.