Kamehameha opts for some rest before huge match vs. Punahou

Kamehameha’s Aiden Koanui(16) puts one down on Huntington Beach’s Nathan Goode(3) and Cayman LaFontaine(2) in the third set on Friday. Bruce Asato / Star-Advertiser

There are very few weeks like this for any volleyball team.

Kamehameha opted to take the path with the highest chance of capturing a state-tournament berth. When the Warriors (9-1) meet Punahou (9-1) for the ILH regular-season title on Saturday, they will be a bit more rested.

Kamehameha edged Punahou on Tuesday to force a first-place tiebreaker. Then came the Clash of the Titans tourney with matches every night, including Friday’s 25-20, 25-19, 25-22 loss to nationally-ranked Huntington Beach (Calif.).

“Our reserves played good. They made some mistakes, but they’ve got to play,” Kamehameha coach Randy Nako said.

After all the exertion on the court, Nako knew his team — particularly the starters — needed a chance to rejuvenate. Before the match, he chatted with Huntington Beach coach Craig Pazanti.

“I talked to him about our situation,” Nako said. “As soon as I put in our 2’s, he put in his 2’s.

Will that make the difference on Saturday? Punahou went all out on Friday, the team’s senior night, in a sweep of No. 12-ranked Corona Del Mar (Calif.). It was an emotionally-charged win that the Buffanblu needed as a team.

Rest versus emotion. The answer will be revealed soon enough.


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