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Now the hunted, Nakasone expects best from HPU foes

By Cindy Luis

POSTED:
LAST UPDATED: 01:35 a.m. HST, Jan 25, 2011



» Bryan Nakasone
» Hawaii Pacific
» Softball coach

It will be a little different feeling when Hawaii Pacific strides onto Howard Okita Field for its softball season opener Feb. 3.

The Sea Warriors have a new banner and a target on their collective backs as the defending NCAA Division II champions.

"Our mind-set ... of course, it's different," HPU coach Bryan Nakasone said. "We know this year will be tougher.

"Obviously, we're not going to sneak up on people. Everyone wants to play the national champs and will be at their best. We just have to be ready."

The Sea Warriors opened practice Jan. 10, but Nakasone said he started putting together the potential starting lineup Sunday. What he saw staring back was a very young squad.

Very young.

"We had all sophomores in the infield and that was quite amazing," the 1968 Saint Louis School graduate said. "But we're pretty solid on offense and defense.

"It's the pitching that is questionable, a bit suspect. Softball is all about pitching. It may not be there this year, but we're working on it."

Nakasone, a retired deputy chief for the Federal Fire Department, has been part of the HPU staff for 18 seasons. It's his love of the game that keeps the former shortstop and catcher for the Crusaders coming back season after season.

"It's a way to give back, and I feel good that we can give the local kids the opportunity to get a college education," said Nakasone, whose current 22-player roster has 15 Hawaii prep products. "Winning at the D-II level is not the priority. Of course we strive to win, but we try to propel the student-athlete.

"To be honest, every year I think I'll just go one more year and that's it. But as long as I am enjoying it, I want to keep doing it. I'm excited to open the season."

But the commitment does come with disappointments. Sunday, Nakasone had to turn down what he considered a real honor: to be the featured speaker at Kailua Little League's opening day April 2.

"I grew up in Kailua, played for Kailua National Little League," he said. "But I had to tell them no, we (will be) on the road."

NOTES

Seasiders on national TV

The Brigham Young-Hawaii men's basketball team will make its first appearance on national television this season when the Seasiders (9-4, 4-0 PacWest) travel to Grand Canyon (8-6, 3-1) on Saturday.

The NCAA Division II National Game of the Week in Phoenix will be on CBS College Sports (OC 247) at 9 a.m. Hawaii time. It is only the second time in three seasons that the PacWest has been featured in the national game of the week. Dixie State hosted Chaminade in 2009 in the national game of the week.

Sword guard honored

Chaminade senior guard Steven Bennett was named the conference player of the week in men's basketball after helping rally the Silverswords to a 98-94 win in overtime last week at Hawaii-Hilo.

Bennett scored 37 points -- second most by a PacWest player this season -- with eight rebounds and five assists. He shot 50 percent from the floor (11-for-22), including a 4-for-8 performance from 3-point range. He also was 11-for-12 from the free-throw line to keep the Silverswords unbeaten in conference play at 4-0.

MEN'S HONOR ROLL

» Tsung-Hsein "Jet" Chang, BYUH: The junior scored 29 points with five rebounds and three assists in the Seasiders' 87-84 double overtime win over Hawaii Pacific. His 25 field-goal attempts is a PacWest high this season.

» Dominique Cooks, Chaminade: The sophomore guard scored 13 points and added seven rebounds as the Silverswords snapped Hawaii-Hilo's eight-game winning streak in overtime.

» Jason Jackson, HPU: The junior forward scored 31 points with nine rebounds and three steals in the double-overtime loss to BYUH.

» Justin Smith, UHH: The senior forward scored 24 points with four assists in the Vulcans' overtime loss to Chaminade.

» Marques Whippy, BYUH: The senior guard had a double-double (25 points and 15 rebounds) with three steals to keep the Seasiders unbeaten in conference (4-0) with the win over Hawaii Pacific in two OTs.

» Zach Wilde, UHH: The junior forward had 22 points, five rebounds, three assists and two blocks in the overtime loss to Chaminade.

WOMEN'S HONOR ROLL

» Jordan Ahakuelo, CU: The freshman guard had 16 points and five steals in a loss to Hawaii-Hilo.

» Courtney Buster, HPU: The senior center had 12 points and 13 rebounds as the Sea Warriors won their 10th straight, outlasting BYUH in two overtimes 78-74.

» Paris Gravely, HPU: The junior guard had a game-high 21 points with three steals and two assists against BYUH, helping the Sea Warriors stay atop the conference standings at 5-0.

» Kristen Hartley, BYUH: The sophomore forward averaged 11.5 points and 6.5 rebounds in an 0-2 week for the Seasiders.

» Hillary Hurley, UHH: The junior forward led the conference with a 14.0 rebound average in two wins for the Vulcans. She also had 28 points with five blocked shots to keep UHH unbeaten in the PacWest at 4-0.

STATISTICS / SCHEDULE

BASKETBALL

MEN
  W L Pct. GB All
BYU-Hawaii 4 0 1.000 -- 9-4
Chaminade 4 0 1.000 -- 11-5
Hawaii-Hilo 4 1 .800 1/2 12-4
Dixie State 3 1 .750 1 10-4
Grand Canyon 3 1 .750 1 8-6
Hawaii Pacific 2 3 .400 2 1/2 7-10
Acad. of Art 1 5 .167 4 4-12
NDNU 1 5 .167 4 3-13
Dominican 0 6 .000 5 0-16

Last week
BYU-Hawaii 87, Hawaii Pacific 84 (2OT)
Chaminade 98, Hawai'i Hilo 94 (OT)
Dixie State 78, Academy of Art 63
Grand Canyon 83, NDNU 70
Dixie State 74, Dominican 52
Academy of Art 60, Grand Canyon 58
Dixie State 71, NDNU 60
Grand Canyon 68, Dominican 60

Scoring

  FG 3FG FT Avg
Chang, BYUH 93 19 51 19.7
Smith, UHH 131 0 37 18.7
Overton, AAU 99 33 58 17.9
Davis, AAU 96 16 51 16.4
Bennett, CU 82 16 65 15.3
Whitehead, DSC 64 30 53 15.1
Wilde, UHH 91 3 48 14.6
Ford, NDNU 70 8 85 14.6
Whippy, BYUH 73 3 34 14.1

Rebounding
  Off Def Total Avg.
Whippy, BYUH 52 100 152 11.7
Dirra, CU 43 108 151 9.4
Wilde, UHH 38 104 142 8.9
Smith, UHH 38 78 116 7.3
Hayden, AAU 32 81 113 7.1

Field-goal percentage
  GP FB FGA Pct.
Smith, UHH 16 131 226 .580
Diarra, CU 16 81 141 .574
den Dulk, HPU 17 53 95 .558
Jones, DSC 14 61 111 .550
Wilde, UHH 16 91 169 .538

Assists
  GP No. Avg.
Bennett, CU 16 83 5.2
Gipson, UHH 16 83 5.2
Gameren, BYUH 11 53 4.8
Barnes, DSC 14 66 4.7
Whippy, BYUH 12 44 3.7

Free-throw percentage
  GP FT FTA Pct.
Ale, BYUH 13 31 36 .861
Whitehead, DSC 14 53 62 .855
Chappell, HPU 17 61 72 .847
Storment, NDNU 16 38 46 .826
Haskins, CU 13 31 39 .795

3-Point field goals
42: Hanson, CU. 34: Snel, UHH. 33: Overton, AAU. 31: Dasttrup, BYUH. 30: Whitehead, DSC. 24: Ale, BYUH.

Steals
41: Whippy, BYUH. 22: Gipson, UHH. 20: Speed, GCU. 19: Bennett, CU. 18: Robotham, AAU. 17: Barnes, DSC. 16: Williams, AAU. 15: Fricke, NDU. 13: Gameren, BYUH; Chang, BYUH; Ale, BYUH.

Blocks
49: Diarra, CU. 23: Fricke, NDNU. 21: Ngoundjo, GCU. 17: Kone, AAU. 13: Shipman, UHH; Smith, UHH.

WOMEN

  W L Pct. GB All
Hawaii Pacific 5 0 1.000 -- 11-3
Dixie State 4 0 1.000 1/2 14-1
Grand Canyon 3 1 .750 1 1/2 15-2
Hawaii-Hilo 3 2 .600 2 7-6
NDNU 3 3 .500 2 1/2 6-9
Acad. of Art 2 4 .333 3 1/2 4-11
Chaminade 1 3 .250 3 1/2 1-10
Dominican 1 5 .167 4 1/2 3-13
BYU-Hawaii 0 4 .000 4 1/2 1-12

Last week
Hawaii-Hilo 47, BYU-Hawaii 43
Hawaii Pacific 78, BYU-Hawaii 74 (2OT)
Hawaii-Hilo 67, Chaminade 53
Dixie State 76, Academy of Art 50
Grand Canyon 74, NDNU 51
Grand Canyon 66, Academy of Art 49
Dixie State 76, Dominican 49
Dixie State 88, NDNU 53
Grand Canyon 87, Dominican 47

Scoring

  FG 3FG FT Avg
Murphy, GCU 115 48 108 24.1
Rieben, BYUH 75 44 33 17.5
Brown, DSC 83 2 62 16.4
L. Zasly, NDNU 87 23 44 16.1
Hurley, UHH 48 0 45 15.7
Hill, DSC 78 7 64 15.1
K. Zasly, NDNU 76 14 58 14.9

Rebounding
  Off Def Total Avg.
Mullins, NDNU 64 100 164 10.9
Brown, DSC 45 99 144 10.3
Hurley, UHH 33 57 90 10.0
Nolan, AAU 47 100 147 9.8
Butler, GCU 57 73 120 7.5

Field-goal percentage
  GP FB FGA Pct.
Butler, GCU 16 57 85 .655
Hurley, UHH 9 48 77 .623
Hill, DSC 15 78 138 .561
Nolan, AAU 15 68 122 .557
Brown, DSC 14 83 154 .539

Assists
  GP No. Avg.
Tompkison, BYUH 13 73 5.6
Nelson, GCU 16 71 4.4
Saia, NDNU 15 52 3.5
Brown, DSC 14 47 3.4

Free-throw percentage
  GP FT FTA Pct.
Murphy, GCU 16 108 119 .908
Janusch, Dom 14 65 74 .878
Hill, DSC 15 64 74 .865
Smith, GCU 16 49 58 .845

3-Point field goals
48: Murphy, GCU. 45: DeRosier, AAU. 44: Rieben, BYUH; 37: Adams, DSC. 24: Janusch, Dom; 23: L. Zasly, NDNU. 17: Maxey, DSC. 16: Imai, UHH.

Steals
44: Nelson, GCU. 43: Murphy, GCU. 41: Rieben, BYUH. 40: Hill, Dom. 33: Tompkison, BYUH; K. Zasly, NDNU. 29: Nolan, AAU. 28: Gravely, HPU. 27: Awa-Williams, HPU.

Blocks
52: Carlson, DSC. 17: Buster, HPU. 12: English, AAU. 11: Hopkins, HPU.

CALENDAR

Today
Radio
PacWest Magazine: 10 a.m., pacificwestsports.tv.

TV
PacWest Magazine: 8 p.m., OC 16 and oc16.tv.

Today
Basketball
Women: Hawaii Pacific at Notre Dame de Namur, 3:30 p.m.; Hawaii-Hilo at Academy of Art, 5:30 p.m.

Men: Hawaii Pacific at Notre Dame de Namur, 5:30 p.m.; Hawaii-Hilo at Academy of Art, 7:30 p.m.

Thursday
Basketball
Women: Brigham Young-Hawaii at Dixie State, Chaminade at Grand Canyon, 2 p.m.; Hawaii-Hilo at Domincan, Hawaii Pacific at Academy of Art, 3:30 p.m.

Men: Brigham Young-Hawaii at Dixie State, Chaminade at Grand Canyon, 4 p.m. Hawaii-Hilo at Domincan, Hawaii Pacific at Academy of Art, 5:30 p.m.

Saturday
Women: Brigham Young-Hawaii at Grand Canyon, 11:30 a.m.; Chaminade at Dixie State, 2:30 p.m.; Hawaii-HIlo at Notre Dame de Namur, Hawaii Pacific at Dominican, 3:30 p.m.

Men: Brigham Young-Hawaii at Grand Canyon, 9 a.m.; Chaminade at Dixie State, 4 p.m.; Hawaii-Hilo at Notre Dame de Namur, Hawaii Pacific at Dominican, 5 p.m.

 






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