A week ago, the Campbell Sabers were close enough to see the finish line.
Prior to the OIA playoffs, Julien Parado was the leading scorer for a squad that was unbeaten in OIA West play.
“It’s definitely a goal for all of us. We’re trying to bring something home for Campbell, like a banner. That’s the main goal for us, but now it’s like starting all over,” the junior guard said.
Now, with the school’s first OIA girls basketball championship in their hands, they are writing history. Herstory.
“Over the pandemic when there wasn’t any school season, we didn’t see too many East teams in the leagues we played. So I couldn’t really tell what kind of competition the East would be bringing,” she said.
Three of the four OIA semifinal teams were West-based. Campbell became only the sixth team from the West side to win the OIA Division I crown in 46 seasons.
“I wasn’t surprised the West is in the top three because I knew there were a lot of good players coming up from the West who we played before on teams like Mililani and Radford,” Parado said.
Parado has a 4.1 grade-point average and hopes to play college basketball. She is leaning toward Biomedical Engineering as a major. For now, the Sabers have a first-round bye when the Heide & Cook/HHSAA Girls Basketball State Championships begin on Monday. This season’s team, guided by former Maui and UH-Hilo player Jazmine Corpuz, is setting the bar for seasons to come.
“Campbell will definitely be hungry for more in the next season as defending champs,” Parado said. “This is just the beginning for our program and we will still continue to make a name for our school and community. I am looking forward to the season ahead and the accomplishments we can achieve with some players coming up. Even though our post-season isn’t done yet, we still plan to improve on our skills, chemistry and craft in the off-season, to come back better than we did this year.”
Parado missed the first few games of the season due to protocols, but eventually got fully vaccinated.
“My parents didn’t want me to at first because they didn’t know how it would affect me later on, but looking forward to college, I’m probably going to have to get vaccinated anyway. And if we made it to states, I would need it,” she said.
Julien Parado’s lockdown staples
Top 3 shows/movies
1. “You” (Netflix)
“I’m on the last episode of the season. It’s two seasons. I saw it on Tik Tok. It’s like a mystery, but also like a romance. This guy seems like he would do anything for love, even killing someone.”
2. “Zootopia” (Disney+)
“It’s about the bunny. It’s like our world, and they have their own city. The bunny solves a mystery and goes through all these obstacles.”
3. “Vampire Diaries” (Netflix)
“It has eight seasons, 20 episodes each. We watched it, our whole family. I think my little sister (Kayden) likes it the most.”
Top 3 food/snack/drink
1. Arizona green tea/plantation iced tea
“The big can lasts me the whole day. We buy the whole pack from Costco.”
2. Korean BBQ – Gen’s at Pearlridge
“It’s so good. You get to cook it yourself on the grill. It’s all you can eat. My favorite side vegetable is the kimchi cucumber and the mashed potato with corn.”
3. Raisin’ Canes
“Chick-Fil-A, I’m excited they’re opening one in Kapolei. I like the original sauce and the Polynesian sauce.”
Top 3 music artists
1. Ariana Grande – “pov”
2. Daniel Caesar – “Get You”
3. H.E.R. – “Best Part”
Favorite athlete: Stephen Curry
“I see his highlights on IG and making these crazy shots and finishes, how does he do that. He’s creative and finishes well around the basket, and gets his teammates involved.”
Favorite class: Summer school P.E.
“At the time it was my favorite because we got to still see everyone from school, and P.E. is fun because I liked sports. It was kind of like a school day but it pays off because you don’t have to actually do it during the school year. All these people sweaty and stuff.”
“Ms. Cacace. She taught coding in a STEM class. It’s pretty fun. I recently took AP Computer Science, algoryhtms and outputs. I was in Ewa Makai (middle school). Ms. Yoshihara, she teaches Human Physiology. I just started this semester with her. She’s a fun teacher and has us do all these things to help us remember things. Cahoots, it’s like everyone in the class has to do it, project on the board, answer a question on your phone. You compete against your classmates.”
Funniest teammate: All
Smartest teammate: All
“I couldn’t choose.”
Teammate most likely to coach one day: Hayley Moore and Caitlyn Hosaka.
“I think being good with kids, I just feel like they would be good coaching and explaining things to others.”
“I also take early college classes. My other AP was AP Computer Science. Next year, I signed up for AP Biology and AP Statistics.
Would your GPA be higher or lower if you weren’t an athlete?
“I think I could’ve maybe taken more AP classes. Without basketball there would be so much more time to do things, I wouldn’t have to do my work so late at night. My older sister (Raven) was president of her class all four years, played softball and was captain of the cheer team. She was around there (4.1). My brother (Corben) did all right in school, but at college, he was studying to be an electrical engineer.”
Dream college: UCLA.
“Or maybe even Stanford or Harvard because they are like one of the top schools.”
Would you go to a smaller university to play basketball?
“Yes. Stanford and Harvard are just to reach high and aim for. UCLA is in the California area where I have family and I like that area, as well. I don’t have a really specific school but I’d be really good staying here and playing for UH Manoa or in the California area.”
New life skills: driving and cooking
“My road test is in March. I’m learning mostly from my siblings. Cooking, my mom taught me her main dishes and how to cook. I would help her with that. I would make lunch for my siblings. I can make breakfast or quesadillas, burritos and steak. On the grill, it’s Hawaiian salt and pepper. On the pan, my mom taught me this recipe. It’s soy sauce, vinegar and ginger.”
Bucket list: Ride in a hot air balloon, visit the Bahamas, travel outside of the U.S.
“The Bahamas seems chill and relaxed, kind of like here, but it would be a vacation.”
Hidden talent: crafts/painting and surfing.
“Surfing was over quarantine. My dad taught me. When he was younger, he used to go a lot, but not recently until we showed an interest. I use the longboard.”
“2200 at my house or in Hawaii in general. See how the islands changed through the people and environment. Or go back 200 million years ago to see dinosaurs.”
“My parents and teammates. All of my coaches: coach Josh Mesa, coach David Velasco, coach Denz Velasco, coach Mark Arquero, coach Shane Lino, coach Brian Kaaa, coach Chelsea Park, coach Jasmine Corpuz, coach Marco Johnson.”