Texas’ Granbury Pirates win 4th Annual Maui Volleyball Invitational

KS Maui places 6th


Photo by Daisy Draper

The Granbury Lady Pirates placed first at the preseason Maui Volleyball Invitational Tournament at Kaʻulaheanuiokamoku on Saturday, August 17, 2013.

By Daisy Draper, staff writer

The Lady Pirates of Granbury High School out of Texas came in as the winners of the Fourth Annual Maui Volleyball Invitational Tournament defeating second-place Seabury Hall, yesterday at the Kamehameha Schools Maui high school gym.

Granbury coach, Ms. Tammi Clark, said the tournament was “an unforgettable experience” and the Kamehameha students “made our team feel at home.”

In addition to Granbury, teams from Maui, a team from Oahu, and a team from California participated. Castle High School placed third, Maryknoll fourth, Laguna Blanca fifth, and Kamehameha Maui sixth.

On the final day of the tournament, held August 15-17, the Maui Warriors lost in their first match against Oʻahu’s Maryknoll. The Warriors won the first set, 25-22, and Maryknoll took the last two sets to advance, 24-22 and 15-11.

After their initial loss to Maryknoll on Saturday, the Kamehameha Maui girls also lost against Laguna Blanca, a volleyball team from Santa Barbara, Calif. At the beginning of the first set, KSM and Laguna Blanca were tied 3-3, but once the Laguna Owls took the lead, they never let go and won 25-13. The Owls led from the beginning of the second set and continued to dominate, winning 25-16 and placing fifth in the tournament.

Compared to Thursday and Friday’s competitive matches, in which the girls played as a team and won all games (losing only 1 set to Maui High), Saturday’s games were marked by missed opportunities and a lack of good ball placement, with many balls landing out of bounds. In fact, the Warriors had defeated three of the teams who landed the in the top four, with the exception of the final winner, Granbury, who they never played.

The Maui Warriors placed sixth overall in the Ikaika Division, two slots down from last year’s fourth place finish against Castle.

But, the real challenge, the regular season, is yet to come. Team captain Taylor Awai said, “Throughout the season, we hope to grow as a team. We hope to set goals and accomplish them.”

Awai and fellow captain Shalia Kamakaokalani also want the team to keep its league title and be able to compete in the state tournament. They both said that the team has good chemistry this year and that they are looking forward to the season.

After last year’s senior-heavy team, the girls volleyball team has had to work hard for their new chemistry. There are only five upperclassman, one junior and four seniors. There are also two freshmen, Selai Damuni and Kanilea Nomura, but the bulk of the team is sophomores, who are seven strong.

“Scrappy, scrappy team; we’re young and very small,” said Coach Bala Spencer, head coach of the Maui Warriors. “This season, we are going to rely on defense and ball handling. We don’t have what you would call big guns.”

The girls kick off their regular season on Tuesday, August 27, at 6 p.m. at Lāhainaluna.

The junior varsity girls team were also in the tournament. They lost all of their matches and placed sixth of six teams in the Hoʻoikaika Division. They were the only junior varsity level team in the tournament.

To see full day-by-day results and watch video recordings of the final matches, click here.