The challenge of winning on the road may be as daunting as it gets this season for both the Rainbow Warriors and Rainbow Wahine basketball teams. Both teams left Tuesday night for 2-game road trips in an attempt to remedy a slow start to the WAC season.
Dana Takahara-Dias may have some momentum with her team as they are coming off an overtime loss to the more talented Lady Techsters of Louisiana Tech last Saturday. This followed a decisive loss on the previous Thursday night in the WAC opener at the Stan Sherrif Center.
The women (6-9, 0-2 WAC) play Idaho on Thursday then travel to Boise St. on Saturday. This is the beginning of a 5-game road schedule in which the Wahine won't return fr a home game until January 31 against Nevada. Hawaii has not performed well away from home as they are 0-4 away from campus.
Freshman Kamilah Jackson has been the pleasant surprise this year as she is averaging double digits in scoring (14.1) and rebounding (12.3). Senior Keisha Kanekoa is averaging 12.7 ppg and leads the team in steals and assists.
The men on the other hand are trying to heal the wounds from the worst start in WAC play (0-4) since 1998-99. More importantly, they have lost in convincing fashion in the last 3 games, the last 2 being at home. Gib Arnold's troops make their longest trip, distance wise, this weekend with New Mexico St. on Thursday then Louisiana Tech on Saturday. In last Saturday's loss to Boise St, Hawaii lead at halftime 31-29, only to be outscored 50-24 in the second half. Hawaii (9-7, 0-4 WAC) is looking to reclaim their offense and defensive aggression that was the key to their early season success. Arnold showed his new "-3-big" lineup with Bill AMis, Doug Kurtz, and Vander Joaquim in at the same time. He plans to use it more on this road trip.
Junior Zane Johnson leads the team averaging 14.5 ppg.