POSTED: 1:30 a.m. HST, Nov 12, 2010
LAST UPDATED: 1:34 a.m. HST, Nov 12, 2010
Calling Jane Croson a "terminator at the highest level," Rainbow Wahine volleyball coach Dave Shoji said he received the gifted recruit's letter of intent yesterday. It was cause for celebration for the country's third-ranked team.
"She's got a complete game, a heavy arm," Shoji said of the 6-foot hitter from Lakewood, Calif. "She is what I would call a terminator at the highest level. She's played at the highest junior level."
And won. Croson and partner Summer Ross became the first Americans to capture the FIVB Youth Beach World title last summer. Croson was also MVP at the NORCECA Women's Junior Continental championship.
Croson, who has family in Hawaii, can hit on the right or left side. She did not play for her high school team this semester because she "broke school rules." She has been playing with a Samoan women's team, according to Shoji, who calls her indiscretion a "minor concern."
"The high school season is not as important as club season," he said. "The competition is not as good. I'd sure like her to be playing, but it was an unfortunate situation. It might be a blessing in disguise because she gets to spend more time on academics."
The Wahine received letters of intent from Croson, 6-5 middle Jade Vorster, from Orlando, Fla., and Kamehameha-Maui hitter Ginger Long. Wahine basketball received a commitment yesterday from Molokai's Kalei Adolpho, a 6-1 middle who will also play volleyball. She is all-state in both sports and also placed third in high jump and seventh in the 1,500 meters at state track.
Adolpho's development could take time, Shoji said, particularly because she is planning to play two sports and won't train year-round. But her quickness, blocking ability and lateral movement make him willing to wait.
"She could be one of the best athletes to come into UH," he said, "but she's so raw in both sports. It will be a matter of time and commitment to working hard."
Wednesday was the first day high school seniors could officially commit to schools and Vorster's letter arrived yesterday. She will arrive in January and enroll at UH so she can train with the team in the spring season. She hit .461 this season for Timber Creek High School.
She reminds Shoji of UH sophomore Brittany Hewitt.
"She has size and great blocking instincts," he says, "and I believe she'll be a big-time player for us in the future."
Monica Stauber, a 5-8 setter, also orally committed to UH early in the recruiting process.
Punahou junior Tai Manu-Olevao, 6-foot hitter, orally committed to UH a few months ago.