An intentional foul call also served as a preseason wake-up call for Hawaii.
A crossed-arms whistle on Rainbow Wahine forward Breanna Arbuckle early in the second half against Brigham Young-Hawaii wasn’t costly, but timely. It inspired a much-needed 16-0 run as UH pulled away for a 73-49 exhibition win last night.
Arbuckle had the Stan Sheriff Center crowd of 725 cheering with an 11-point, 10-rebound, seven-block night.
"There was nothing intentional about it; they just called it," Arbuckle said of her contact with a BYUH player following a rebound. "I would say (it fired us up) because everybody was just hungry after that. Might as well just go after it."
Did they ever. The Wahine posted 14 steals and 13 blocks and held the Division II Seasiders to 34.7 percent shooting.
Shawna Kuehu also posted a fine all-around game with 16 points, seven rebounds, three blocks and four steals. Kamilah Jackson posted a double-double off the bench (11 points, 11 rebounds) and Allie Patterson added 10 points on 4-for-5 shooting.
"We fed off each other," Kuehu said. "We see one person going at it, we’re all going to go at it."
It was UH’s final tune-up before its season opener on Nov. 19 vs. Cal State Northridge. This one ended in similiar fashion to the Wahine’s first exhibition, a 74-34 blowout of Chaminade.
But it certainly didn’t go that way for the first 25 minutes. The Seasiders, under the direction of new coach Hiram Akina, led by as many as seven points early but couldn’t sustain their effectiveness. Richelle Rieben scored all of her 16 points in the first half to lead BYUH, which trailed only 32-28 at the break.
"I thought they responded well to the battle at halftime," Hawaii coach Dana Takahara-Dias said. "They took to some adjustments that were asked of them, took it to heart, and really finished strong tonight."
UH forced a 5-second inbounds turnover on the Seasiders after the intentional foul free throws were made. The message was sent.
Akina was still happy overall.
"They’re so talented, they’re so big and athletic and they got smart players," said Akina of UH. "We had our moments, but that was in the first half."
UH failed to score for the first 5 minutes of the game.
Rieben hit her fourth 3-pointer to put BYUH up 20-13 with 7:53 left in the first half.
Wahine sign three
Takahara-Dias announced yesterday that three players have signed with UH for the 2011-12 season.
As long expected, Molokai High senior center Kalei Adolpho was among them. She will play both basketball and volleyball at UH, but will be on a basketball scholarship. Takahara-Dias, who coached Adolpho for two years on the Team Aloha all-star squad, said it was still being worked out exactly when Adolpho would transition from volleyball to basketball next season.
As a sophomore, the 6-foot-1 Adolpho led Molokai to the Division II state championship. She had 21 points, 19 rebounds and six blocks in the title game.
Another committed high school senior is Temecula Valley (Calif.) 5-foot-10 wing Malia Cravens, the younger sister of UH football player Siaki Cravens. Cravens averaged 6.8 points and 10.0 rebounds per game as a junior.
The final player is 5-foot-6 point guard Jasmine Ray, who will arrive from San Bernardino College with three years of eligibility. Takahara-Dias said Ray brings toughness; she played three years of high school football as a wide receiver, cornerback and kicker.
That will be all for the early period. The Wahine have three scholarships left to fill during the spring (late) period to reach their allotment of 15 for next season.