Who is it going to be?
Most likely neither.
Both OIA programs have a chance to knock off an ILH power in tonight’s semifinals of the New City Nissan/HHSAA Girls Volleyball State Championships on the Kamehameha-Hawaii campus. Moanalua plays top seed Kamehameha while OIA champ Mililani takes on Punahou.
The OIA champion Trojans have been in the semifinals in each of the last two years, only to be ousted by an ILH power, eventual champion Punahou last year and Kamehameha the year before. Moanalua last made the semifinals in 2009, when it was knocked out by Punahou.
Not that there is any shame in that. The state championship match has been an all-ILH affair every year since 2002 when Kahuku rose up and won it all.
No ILH team has lost to a school from another league in the tournament since 2002, giving Kamehameha a 33-game winning streak against other leagues. Punahou’s streak is just a stellar, but the Buffanblu have missed two tournaments in that span.
Mililani has the edge to break the spell, if only because the OIA champ has not lost this year and Punahou has looked more than a little shaky at times against teams like ‘Iolani. The Trojans destroyed Aiea in the first round while the Buffanblu similarly took apart Kamehameha-Hawaii.
And don’t count out Moanalua against Kamehameha. Na Menehune’s attacking style is a lot like ‘Iolani’s, and the Raiders pushed Kamehameha during the regular season.
“They are pretty good,” Kamehameha’s Kealani Browne said. “All I know is that they are in states so they must be pretty good.”
If things go the way they have in the past decade, both ILH schools have the decided advantage and the third-place match will be more than just and afterthought. It will be for the unofficial title of ‘last OIA school standing’
Kahuku took third last year with a win in the third-place match over Mililani.
State semifinal records 2003-2012