Aidan Tune pounded 12 kills and Keau Thompson had six of his seven kills in the opening set as Punahou swept Maryknoll 25-14, 25-19 on Tuesday night.
Punahou improved to 3-0 in Interscholastic League of Honolulu boys volleyball play with the road win — across the street – at Clarence T.C. Ching Gymnasium.
Riley Haine added four kills, and Nate Loose and Ryder Hsiung chipped in two apiece for the Buffanblu. Setter Keegan Au Yuen dished 20 assists and added a block.
“I like how we kept grinding and were resilient. We made a ton of errors today, mental errors,” Punahou Coach Rick Tune said. “Coming off an emotional win over Kamehameha the other night, you have a tendency to check out emotionally and you can’t. This is a good Maryknoll team that beat ‘Iolani in three sets. They’re always tough in this gym. We knew that, but we had a lot of unforced errors with nets and missed digs, missed serves.”
Ezekial Rodrigues had seven kills and Alexander Parks tallied five kills and an ace for Maryknoll, which dropped to 1-2.
In each set, the home team had some momentum before the dynasty of Punahou hit the gas pedal. Thompson’s cannon shots from the right side were unchecked for a long stretch, but Maryknoll was within 15-13 in the first game. Then Haine hit a roll shot and Hsiung hammered a kill on a Maryknoll overpass to spark a 10-1 closing run.
The Spartans led the second set 7-3 after a kill by Rodrigues, but Punahou chipped away and tied the game at 13. From there, the Buffanblu closed out with a 12-6 run as Au Yuen connected with Aidan Tune.
Maryknoll took some time to get started, but showed a lot of fire to go with balance and talent.
“I like how passionate they are,” Tune said. “They enjoy playing the game. They enjoy playing with each other. I love how the bench supposed the guys on the court. Yeah, it’s great to see kids being passionate about the sport.”
Getting back on the hardwood is a relief for a volleyball lifer like Tune.
“I feel great. We’re in the gym. We’re playing volleyball. It’s taken a lot of effort from the ILH and Punahou to get this back to where it is now, so I feel really appreciative of everybody’s efforts.”