Tachibana walks away from Kahuku job

Mounia Tachibana spent three years as the Kahuku girls volleyball coach. Cindy Ellen Russell / Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

Mounia Tachibana is unhappy with what she calls a lack of support she and her team received from the Kahuku administration and has left her job as the Red Raiders girls volleyball coach.

“I did not have support from the administration,” she said Tuesday. “The Kahuku athletes deserve better. The administration is more involved with football and that makes it really hard for the other sports to progress.”

Phone calls to Kahuku principal Donna Lindsey and athletic director Gillian Yamagata seeking a response to Tachibana’s comments were not returned Tuesday afternoon. An email sent Tuesday to Wendy Anae asking for a response was also not returned. Anae, according to a source, has been named as a Kahuku co-athletic director. On Tuesday morning, Anae sent an email to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser announcing that the Red Raiders are in the process of finding a new coach.

Tachibana, who is from Kahuku and starred at Kamehameha in volleyball, spent three years as the Red Raiders coach.

She said the administration did not update broken volleyball equipment and that her girls were made to feel like football players had first priority in the training room.

“My girls would tell me they couldn’t go in the training room because the football players were in there,” Tachibana said. “This is a common thing. This didn’t happen overnight. It got worse over the years.”

Tachibana also said that funds were not made available to her team when they went on a trip to Las Vegas and that she was told that the football team received money for its trip to Las Vegas.

“They told us that the football team’s funds came from sponsors, and that’s the way they got around it,” she said. “For football, it was, ‘Here you go.’ I was also left by myself on making arrangements and I had to put some of my personal money into it. We were the first public school team from Hawaii to get invited to this big tournament in Las Vegas. It was a big deal, but it was not a big deal to the administration.”

Tachibana said she loved coaching the Kahuku girls and getting support from their parents and that she loves the Kahuku community.

“This year, I stood up and I was fighting for my girls more and complaining more and speaking my mind more,” Tachibana said. “I actually didn’t feel like I could concentrate on coaching.”

Tachibana, who has two young daughters, does not plan to coach high school volleyball in the near future. She will continue to coach with the Spike and Serve club.


  1. Simple Simon March 6, 2018 9:03 pm

    This is true. This admin is just terrible and some thing has got to change or they’ll be seeing new coaches every year.

  2. North Shore hooligan March 6, 2018 9:43 pm

    Yes the JV softball had to forfeit 4 games because we had no coach in place …….
    The Ad and staff need to change.

  3. Teri March 6, 2018 10:07 pm

    This is so true! The softball team had very old equipment and their uniforms had seen better days. The year my nephew played baseball, their team was kicked odd the field because the AD failed to secure the necessary permits. It’s sad that the football prigram gets preferential treatment at the expense of the other programs.

  4. TopShottah March 6, 2018 10:24 pm

    That’s sad. The North Shore is full of natural athletes. If the same energy was funneled to other programs @ Kahuku, they would run the scene in every sport. Not just football.

  5. PlayaHatersAnonymous March 6, 2018 10:56 pm

    Remember there’s always something to sacrifice to have something great. It’s sad but it’s true in the natural selection of things. Even when it comes to Kahuku…

  6. Alohall143 March 6, 2018 11:47 pm

    This isn’t a ‘football team gets everything’ problem. The teams funding a lot of times does come from direct sponsorship donations but don’t get it twisted this is an ADMIN problem alone. Come on now, you people don’t honestly believe that the thousands of dollars raised at each of the football games are going to the team do you?? Oh how sweetly naive…it doesn’t take much to realize the money is being diverted but it’s not going to the TEAM.

    For instance, jerseys, anyone wonder how were one of the best teams for football and yet we have a lousy 25/30% discount?? I call BS, someone is making something cause that’s crap, I get better discounts going to their website directly or going through other resellers.

    Buses, the budget for this is decent enough given the amount of buses necessary for each sport. Could pricing be better maybe, do we spend our whole budget on it, not always, the numbers haven’t always added up from what some of us have been able to dig up in financial records for the school.

    Your sport should have to raise most of its own money. It might seem unfair that football gets so much funding, but I find it unfair that they should have to share so much of what their sport earns when it’s their sport who earned it. You need more butts in the seat and that’s not always happening for other sports.

    In the end follow the money cause it’s not all leading to football there are some houses you might find yourself standing at, to no surprise for me, but in a tightly wound community of families, let’s face it they’ll hide for each other. I’ll leave with this. To prove the money dispersement is not all football, anyone check out the tennis team?? I know I haven’t, I know lots of us haven’t, but anyone see their funding??? Know who their coach has been for years??? Worth taking a 👀 look see.

  7. Awrite!! March 7, 2018 12:17 am

    Its not the admins, its the lack of resources they have to work with.
    St. Louis is building a 1.4 million dollar gym to solve their problems.

    I think people now days forget what it takes to work at a public school.

  8. Longtimeupsetnsparent March 7, 2018 3:04 am

    It IS the admin and their favoritism. Administration/ AD need a facelift. They could care less about every other sport, except football and it’s been like that for YEARS!! No matter how many complaints are made, there is absolutely NO…ZERO resolution. Please, DOE, do SOMETHING!!!

  9. Kaibo808 March 7, 2018 3:34 am

    When I played soccer, and this was before Yamagata was AD, we “couldn’t afford” to have shorts to go with our uniforms. We were lucky to even get new uniforms (so we were told) and we each had a pair of socks that had to be returned at the end of the season. But the football players had brand new under armor gear that year.

  10. Redraiders4life March 7, 2018 3:52 am

    Don’t blame Anae, she just started and if anyone has been proactive and involved-it’s her. I’ve seen her at games, involved and trying to make a change. Can’t say the same for anyone else.

  11. fsmemea March 7, 2018 6:11 am

    University and colleges have to adhere to an equal opportunity for female and male athletes in their respective sports in what is provided by the athletic program as far as support for each participating athlete. Whether its equipment, traveling fees, all have to be equally distributed. I wonder if that’s the same with the athletic program here in Hawaii, at the high school level?

    There are always different and creative ways of getting the necessary funds for a program. GRANTS. There are grants available for numerous reasons, you just have to know how to tap into it…

  12. Toli Ilaoa March 7, 2018 6:58 am

    They need better facilities simple numbers you have between 60-100 fottball players vatsity and jv and 10 plus volley players trying to use the weight room, and training room. That Vegas trip was paid for by the Polynesian Football Hall of Fame and the year before was paid by Bishop Gorman

  13. Salu Kaio March 7, 2018 7:11 am

    Booster Club Committee is one of the biggest resources funding personal that supports all athletic. Booster Club always involve in all sports regarding fundraising, Donations & Sponsor support. The AD is fully responsible for ordering equipments and supporting all coaches in there needs. However, coaches does have responsibilities regarding fundraising and parent volunteers.

  14. Sad! March 7, 2018 7:47 am

    Sad! just like the AD and Principal at Castle, they gotta go! They protect the parents too much and not the coaches! they want there job easier!

  15. EnoughAlready March 7, 2018 7:48 am

    @Toli Ilaoa, if those schools/organization paid for the players to go those two years then why did the players have to pay 800 plus per child to go?

  16. John Soller March 7, 2018 8:29 am

    If a man found the love of his life, and the love of his life had 3 kids from a previous relationship, that man is also acknowledging and accepting the ENTIRE PACKAGE. Although he isnt trying to assume the role as the Biological father, he ultimately will have to diligently offer his support to his wife in every single way that it takes in order to raise those kids.

    Tachibana should have known exactly what she was getting herself involved in upon assuming the role of the Kahuku Girls Volleyball coach. I’m sure that every decision she made regarding the girls, that she made those decisions cause she wanted to. That’s what it takes. Easy to point the finger at circumstances or dilemmas as to why resigning was in her beat interest.
    I respect her decision. I also am enthusiastic about who will fill that need as far as Kahuku needing a coach for the girls
    V-ball team.

    Regardless of every necessary need regarding Kahuku Sports in its entirety, I acknowledge that everything will fall into place.

  17. HBoy March 7, 2018 9:18 am

    Drop all sports, focus on academics and the bickering and complaining will decrease significantly. I love my alma mater and it’s sports programs. I love how we rally to support some of its programs. However we do need to change our attitudes of pointing the finger at others and thinking we are the best. We are very good in something’s, good in others and not so good in others still but we need to be better cheerleaders from the sidelines instead of coaches and do more cheering not complaining. Our kids need to be taught that sports are fun and are a part of life…not life. They need to know win or lose, having a good or bad game, As or D’s they are still loved and that we can always make improvements. Let’s earn the respect of others through sportsmanship rather than bullying or name calling because those same kids they compete against may become a teammate in the future. Let’s be pono in our lives on and off the field so that we and our children can sleep with a clear conscience.

  18. ??? March 7, 2018 9:38 am

    Sounds like the WHOLE Kahuku administration needs to change!!!

  19. hadafakaya March 7, 2018 9:42 am

    Administration been lacking for awhile now, follow the money trail?

  20. 88 March 7, 2018 9:59 am

    Follow the $$$$. Every Kahuku home game for football is packed. Triple packed during homecoming. Where does the $$$$$ go? Kahuku has a store on campus that sales all types of Kahuku merchandise. Where does this $$$$ go? The kids paid over $1000 dollars each to participate in the Gorman game and $850 to participate in the Bingham game. If those trips were paid for where did this $$$ go? It would be very interesting to find out…

  21. John Rodgers March 7, 2018 1:27 pm

    I’m surprised someone hasn’t lawyered up and brought a Title IX violation lawsuit against Kahuku. If the girls Volleyball team can’t use the weight room because the Football players are there, that’s clearly a Title IX violation. From the story, it looks like it goes way beyond that. Where’s Eric Seitz? He should be totally drooling over this case.

  22. ILH March 7, 2018 3:40 pm

    Such a close knit community. Sad to see people throwing their own peeps under the bus.

    Must have been so bad that the coach went public knowing full well, or not, the impact and collateral damage it will have on the school and the community.

  23. Hmmm? March 7, 2018 5:11 pm

    I know this about Kahuku, but what about MP girls basketball and Castle baseball… No support from Admin too, ILH and OIA. HS coaches should form a Union.

  24. 88 March 7, 2018 5:44 pm

    ILH, there would be no “collateral damage” or ” throwing people under the bus” if the people who are in charge are honest and forthcoming. I do not have a kid playing on the volleyball team but if i did i would be happy that my kids coach is taking a stand for the team.

  25. John Soller March 7, 2018 10:50 pm

    At the end of each day…..be it obstacles or dilemmas of any sort in its entirety, EVERYTHING works out.

    One day at the end of one of coach Tachibanas day, she simply realized that everything worked out……

    …..Coach Tachibana simply was not satisfied.

    Quite simply……Tachibana was NOT the correct person for the job.

  26. ILH March 8, 2018 8:15 am

    88- As an outside observer, this is the perception.

    Shes not happy with the lack of support from administration. Throws FB under the bus.

    Clear as day.

    I dont know. Might be just a different generation. If we decided to step down, we did it with a thank you for the opportunity and good luck to the players and to the next coach. Especially if you stepped down on your own terms and not fired.

    Good luck to the coach, all of this is a learning process for everyone involved.

  27. Lani March 8, 2018 11:24 am

    Same with Kapolei Football is everything

  28. ILH March 8, 2018 12:29 pm

    John Soller-

    Quite simply……Tachibana was NOT the correct person for the job.

    Could you elaborate a little on your opinion?

  29. ahinalu March 8, 2018 3:53 pm

    Donna Lindsey I got Two Words For You ” Broken Trust ” !

  30. FriedRice March 8, 2018 4:02 pm

    A simple “thank you” while stepping down would say volumes about her and the job. By quiting, and going out slinging mud, that is a terrible example for the kids and sets the tone for future generations on how to burn bridges. Dont expect her to be coaching at any other high school especially in the ILH or her alma mater KS.

  31. Liaaaaaa March 9, 2018 9:16 am

    Why should she thank the admin ? The only people she should be thanking and wishing good luck too is the girls! They have been doing so good in ranking these last couple years that she has been coaching. You can’t really judge a persons actions unless you have been in their shoes. Yea I agree it’s sad that she left the girls hanging because she was an awesome coach the girls loved her, she really improved the volleyball program, and it was nice to actually have the same coach coaching every year! but when you fight so hard for something continually over the years and it’s like you are not being heard or like everything you do, your time, energy and money is going down, sometimes you just have to take a step back. Yes the admin has always been this way Ever since I entered 7th grade @ kahuku high school even before, everything was always “Football First” or “Football Boys First” whether it be working out in the weight room or in the trainers room getting ice or getting wrapped it’s always football boys first! Even when it came down to game day trainers where always at football events over Any other sports! If you ain’t from kahuku you wouldn’t know. We always get the same bs from our administration and when we ask for explanations they always give excuses or make things so complicated to accomplish. But like I said coach tachibana has nothing to apologize for and doesn’t need to thank the admin either because they obviously aren’t doing their job. Her resignation and speaking up, to me, is her way of trying to open the DOE’s eyes! Like literally look at the school admin reputation. We are continually changing admin leaders And now coaches too.I have seen so many bad articles lately on kahuku about problems going on at sporting events and about our administration period! We need to speak up even though it seems like we are not being heard! WE WILL BE HEARD…..

  32. #karmaisabitch March 9, 2018 6:56 pm

    Castle admin and AD should be let go. Horrible administration and no back bone.

  33. Jimmy H. August 17, 2018 9:16 am

    Please stop thinking of terms “back in the days,” and “old school.” Those are the reasons why Penn St, Mich St, USC, Maryland, Carolina Panthers, etc have all suffered monumental tragedies. “Old school,” individuals were not speaking up about ongoing issues and let it carry on for years. If there is a problem, come forward to the admin. If they don’t respond, then do what you need to get it corrected.

    You don’t think Tachibana knew finding a new job would be difficult after whistle blowing? She made a sacrifice for future red raiders.

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