Some people say Dallas Martinez looks like a softball player.
OK, she gets that. Compact. Athletic. Powerful enough to put the shot last year on the Sacred Hearts/Pac-Five track and field team for the first time.
The softball reference, though, never happens while the senior is balling on the basketball court. Dallas Logan Martinez — the oldest child of a Dallas Cowboys fan and a Wolverine movie fan — is averaging nearly 11 points, eight rebounds and five assists per game for the Lancers, who are 9-3 overall and ranked No. 10 in the Star-Advertiser Girls Basketball Top 10.
Just a few seasons ago, Sacred Hearts was in ILH Division II basketball. Now, they compete and, in the past couple of years, have notched their share of conference wins against some of the best D-I programs in the state. Securing one of the two state-tournament berths allotted to the ILH is a major task for every school in the league.
“We definitely have our big goal, our dream, but we also have little goals to get to that main goal. For every practice, every game, we always have a plan on what we’re going to focus on, what we’re going to work on,” Martinez said.
The Lancers opened league play at home with a 67-33 loss to No. 1 ‘Iolani.
“The ‘Iolani game was a wake-up call for us. We lost a lot of seniors last year, and we have a lot of new people from JV, so it kind of gave them that sense of this is what ILH is going to be like. They know what they’re going to have to face every game. It changed our mindset of what we need to work on. We can compete with every team. We have to do it and execute,” she said.
They’ve played 12 games — there were three more recently as the Lancers placed second in their tournament — a total number that is matched by no other team in preseason.
“I think my body is achy, but that’s not going to really stop me or my teammates from going on. We’ve got a bunch of season left. We’ve just started. We’ve got to put away our aches and pains and keep on going,” Martinez said.
She is one of the few fourth-year varsity lettermen in girls basketball, capable of scoring big against the toughest opponents. She averaged 16 points per game as a junior. This winter, she’s shooting less and distributing more, a formula that should help the younger Lancers develop more confidence. A balanced attack could give SHA a better shot at contending for the ILH title.
On the court, Martinez was a Star-Advertiser All-State Fab 15 selection at No. 12 last season. Off the court, she has a 3.85 grade-point average and has a keen interest in biomedical engineering. Her head coach, Dr. Richard Kasuya, has Martinez’s father, Eric, as an assistant coach.
“She’s extremely humble. I think Dallas has been raised the right way. Her parents are great. She’s a high-character kid,” said Kasuya, who teaches at the University of Hawaii medical school. “She has her priorities in life set the right way, church family school and finds a way to put sports in there. She’ll be successful in anything she chooses.”
Bioengineering is fun and all, but things could change. Maybe one day Martinez will be in a class where her high school coach is the instructor.
“There’s a little part of me that’s hoping,” he said.
As for softball, Martinez is busy with shot putting again next spring, but she is going to try her luck on the diamond. She hasn’t been on a field since Little League baseball as a kid in Kaneohe. Maybe the Lancers can use a courtesy runner with speed, an outfielder with range.
Martinez chatted with Hawaii Prep World on Sunday.
Sacred Hearts Academy
Q & A / Favorites
Athlete: Michael Jordan
> “To me, he’s the greatest basketball player of all time. I didn’t grow up in that age, but I grew up watching him with my dad. I fell in love with his game and the way he played.”
Is there any one story about him that pertains to yourself?
> “There was one game when he was really sick, I don’t know if it was the flu, and that didn’t stop him from playing. He still went out there and played his best. He was amazing, and his teammates had to carry him off the court. That’s really inspiring to me because when I have injuries, I don’t want to sit out. That makes it harder for my team and I don’t want to put that on them.”
Team: Miami Heat
> “Because of Dwayne Wade. He’s probably my second favorite player. I’ve watched a few games, but I’m not hopping on that Golden State bandwagon. They’re fun to watch.”
Food (at home): Mom’s steak
> “It’s been awhile. During basketball season, we don’t have a lot of time. Sometimes it’s on the grill, sometimes it’s on the pan.”
Does she use a lot of butter?
> “No, she uses spices, but no butter.”
Food (eating out): Italian, Bravo’s
> “I love Mac and cheese. That’s my favorite food. It’s in Pearlridge, and we live in Kaneohe. I literally had Mac and cheese last night from the Chicken Company in Ala Moana.”
> “Honestly, just relaxing. We’re always go, go, go, so sleeping and resting. Catching up on resting.”
Movie: High School Musical
> “I’ve seen it too many times to count. I like Troy Bolton. He’s a basketball player and the plot wraps around him and how he balances all his things. You haven’t seen it? You have to watch it. It’s on Netflix.”
What’s your favorite scene?
> “When they were in the locker room and they were down in the championship game. He was hurt and all their heads were down. The coach was like, it’s up to you guys to play to motivate yourselves. His friend kind of picked everybody up and they came back and won the game.”
So they’re singing through this?
> “I don’t remember, but my favorite song from that movie is ‘You Gotta Get Your Head in the Game.’ That’s their practice song.”
Thirteen million views. Has your dad watched it?
> “No, probably not. I can’t believe you never watched that. It’s so big. It’s Zac Efron.”
TV show: Vampire Diaries
> “I’m really into that mystical, magical kind of stuff. The characters are good looking. That’s always a plus. It goes back and forth from the 1800s to 2013, 2012. Everything collides and they’re trying to live normal lives.”
Did you dress up as a vampire for Halloween?
> “Yes, I did it one time. They’re just like normal people.”
Video game: HALO.
> “When I was younger, I used to play a lot. I kind of play with my brothers now. They’re younger, 14 and 10. We have competitions where you can play one on one. It gets really competitive just because that’s my brother’s thing. There’s yelling and screaming.”
That’s how you and your brothers bond.
> “Yeah, sometimes.”
Music artist: Khalid
> “My favorite songs are Coaster and East Side. He’s a mellow artist so it’s more like slow and relaxing. That’s not my hype music.”
Teacher: Mr. (Peter) Park, my robotics teacher.
> “We have a classroom and a lab room. He’ll teach us a lesson, then we go in the lab room and assemble things like robots. Or chemical engineering, we made ice cream and butter. It came out good. It was really fun.”
> “Ever since sophomore year to now, I’ve been getting 3.9, 4.0, so I would’ve liked my cumulative to be 3.9, 4.0, but since my freshman year, I really messed up because of the transition and that whole thing, really brought it down. It’s hard to maintain during the season, but it definitely taught me time management. I always put school first.”
Is the time management about doing homework early?
> “I usually do the majority of my homework during breaks or if we have extra time in class when we finish the lesson early. We don’t finish practice until 8, and we get home around 9 or 9:30. After school, I chauffeur my brother to practice, come back here and then I do rehab for any of my injuries. I eat, too, and by that time my homework’s already done.”
Does your brother tip you well for the limousine service?
> “I got a thank you.”
Class: Intro to Engineering
> “It’s basically teaching us mechanical, electrical, chemical. Right now, I want to be a biomedical engineer. You make or improve the machines in hospitals and everything like that.”
Motto or scripture: Gal. 2:23
> “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart.”
What mom (Vanessa) says that you can’t forget?
> “My mom’s favorite line is, ‘Don’t ask, just Google.’ “
What’s an example?
> “If you want to know what time someplace opens, she says, ‘Don’t ask, just Google.’ Or, ‘Clean your room.’ She says that one a lot.”
What dad (Eric) says that you can’t forget?
> “ ‘Use your left hand.’ That’s a famous line. Or ‘Rebound.’ “
What your coaches say that you can’t forget?
> “This was also said by my dad, my sophomore year. He said, ‘Make some noise.’ People sleep on Sacred Hearts, so that was kind of like a wakeup call, like make a name for our school. People should know who we are.”
How does your sport affect your life?
> “Offseason, you’re always training for regular season. It’s not as intense, but I’m always working. Weight room and mostly for club, practices two to three times a week and games.”
> “I did shot put last year for the first time and I’m going to do it again, and I’m going to try softball. Everyone said I look like a softball player. I played baseball when I was young, and I tried softball but it conflicted with club basketball, but this (spring) I’m going to try.”
Middle and elementary schools
> “Kapunahala Elementary and King Intermediate.”
> “Baseball, and basketball, I was in PAL, KBA, KAC, all that stuff when I was younger. I started getting into club. I played with Eastsidaz for awhile, and more recently, with Hawaii Storm.”
> “I’ve been to L.A., Chicago, Las Vegas, Santa Barbara, Maui and the Big Island. I think Chicago two years ago was my favorite. We did really well. We won the tournament, our division. It was my first time in Chicago and I fell in love with the architecture. It’s very different. Santa Barbara, we went to camp at Westmont and stayed at the dorms. It was a really good experience. It was five days.”
What did you get out of that experience?
> “It was exposure and just seeing how they kind of play up there. I was a freshman and I hadn’t played much yet. It was different to see how it’s different, Hawaii to mainland. A coach approached me and gave me her number, so that was my first exposure and I liked it.”
What’s something you’re good at that might surprise people?
> “Ceramics and pottery. It took awhile to get the hang of it. People don’t think of it being hard, but it’s a lot of arms and core work, you have to squeeze things together, moderate how fast the wheel goes. If you go too fast, your clay’s going to go anywhere. If you go too slow, your clay’s not going to have the right shape. I took that class because I needed the art credit, but once I took it, I didn’t think I was going to like it at all, but it became my favorite class. It’s therapeutic. You have to mold the clay before you put it on the wheel, so you can take your anger out on it. You have to pound and roll.”
What’s your favorite color when you do the glazing?
> “It’s called arctic blue. I like matte colors, too.”
Your favorite piece?
> “It’s a vase and I had a design, then you cut it out and glaze it. It was kind of an assignment, but for the people who got the hang of making the vase, they were able to sculpt and cut out. I’ve taken the class one semester each year. I’m taking it again in the second semester. I made a teapot. It’s in the training room. I donated it to my trainers. They put candy and stuff in it.”
> “I’d love to go to Italy because that’s my favorite food. I want to go to maybe Greece just because of their architecture and statues. And I always wanted to go to Egypt. We studied that in history and I like the architecture. It blows my mind what they did without technology.”
What is the history of your name?
> “Well, my name was going to be Dallas because my dad, obviously, is a big Cowboys fan. He doesn’t really rep it by wearing a lot of their gear. He repped it the most by naming me Dallas. My middle name, Logan, was because my mom was into the Wolverine, the movie. When they’re mad, Logan comes out, too. “Dallas Logan!” Like stern. My mom says it to me a lot, or sometimes if we’re just joking around, she says my (first and middle) names. My Hawaiian name is Lanikuhonua. My uncle Mark game me that name. The meaning is ‘Heaven standing on earth.’ Actually, my dad gave me that name, not my uncle.”
> To (athletic director) Ryan Hogue, because he’s done so much for me. He helped me apply to the school. If he didn’t get involved, I wouldn’t be getting the best education, so I’m thankful for the opportunity to be here. To my family, just because I know I’m not the easiest kid to handle, but they put up with me. They want the best for me. My club coaches for helping me improve my game, and everyone for supporting me and believing in me.”
Your one-word response to each name on the roster:
> “Hands. We always tell her to not use her hands. She fouls so much.”
> “Adorable. She’s the cutest thing ever.”
> “Self-conscious. She’s one of my best friends. Every break we have, she’s looking at herself, making sure her uniform is OK. ‘Do I look cute?’ “
Her nickname is Cookie?
> “Her grandpa couldn’t say Ryanne.”
> “Smart. Her basketball IQ is pretty high for a young player, I’d say.”
> “My twin. We literally look alike and we have that kind of telepathy on the court. I know where she’s going to be. I can count on her.”
> Medeiros: “That’s true. Ever since I stated playing club with her and coming to Sacred Hearts, we connect on and off the court. We call each other twins. Our perspectives can be different on the court, but we know what we mean when we talk to each other. I speak up sometimes. Most of the time I leave it to them (Dallas and Sade Mizusawa).”
Coach Richard Kasuya
> “Inspiring. He… I love Coach Richard a lot. He has so much faith and trust in us. He believes so much in us. I’m know I’m crying, but he kind of turned our program around. His philosophy is he doesn’t really need to yell to get his point across, and I think that was good for us just because, like, as you know, girls don’t really take criticism too well. Especially girls because girls are girls, and he kind of turned things around for us. He made us a lot closer. He’s just a great guy and I’m glad he’s our coach.”
> “He teaches and he used to practice (medicine), too. I think that plays a role in his coaching, that teacher, that calm when things are hectic and that’s good for our team.
Eventually, you might coach, too. Do you have your own style, or will you be a blend of your influential coaches?
> “I think I’ll be a little of my dad and Coach Richard. They’re kind of good cop, bad cop kind of thing. Coach Richard is the gentle, calm one, and my dad is like, I’ll yell at you if you need that, because you need the yelling sometimes. People have said that already because I’m already kind of coach on the court or on the side.”
SHA’s next game: Punahou on Tuesday
> “We went to one of their games about a week ago and they are a good team. They have a lot of young talent. I think they’re going to be a lot more competitive than they were last year because of the coaching and everyone’s more comfortable. So I think it’s going to be interesting on Tuesday. We have our game plan. We just need execute that and hopefully we’ll come out with the win.”