The University of Hawaii at Manoa men’s basketball team dominated its season-opening game against visiting UH-Hilo 97-67 on Wednesday.
A gathering of 1,302, including a lively student section, saw Junior Madut’s 17 points lead six ‘Bows in double-figure scoring at SimpliFi Arena at the Stan Sheriff Center.
The Rainbow Warriors and visiting Vulcans were both rusty and sloppy early. But the height and talent difference between the Division I and II teams was evident throughout.
The Rainbows’ biggest lead in the first half was 21-3. Hilo cut it to 38-28 on Donald McHenry’s 3-pointer, with less than a minute before intermission. Then Bernardo Da Silva, who scored 16 points, hit for the Rainbows before the buzzer for a 40-28 halftime lead.
McHenry led Hilo with 13 points, including a 3-pointer that cut the Vulcans’ deficit to 52-44 with 13:32 left in the game. But Manoa responded with a trey from Jerome Desrosiers to put the lead back into double-digits, and started a sustained explosion that put the game out of reach. Noel Coleman’s second bomb in the space of 45 seconds made it 67-44 with 9:25 left.
Both teams were hurt by poor shooting and turnovers early.Madut scored the game’s first five points with a driving layup and a 3-pointer. The Vulcans did not score until the 14:50 mark, when Aniwaniwa Tait-Jones’ basket made it 6-2.
The Warriors dominated the boards throughout. Da Silva led Manoa with 10 of its 51 rebounds. Tait-Jones led Hilo with 6 of its 25.
Coleman added 15 points for Manoa, while Amoro Lado had 12, Desrosiers 11, and Zoar Nedd 10.
Darren Williams contributed 12 and Jamie Strong 10 for Hilo.
Northern Colorado edged Pacific 67-65 in the first game of the four-team round-robin Outrigger Hotels Rainbow Classic. Daylen Kountz led the Bears with 22 points and Sam Freeman had 15 for the Tigers.
The tournament continues Thursday with the Rainbows playing Northern Colorado in the feature game and concludes Saturday with them meeting Pacific. Hilo will play the opposite teams in the early games.