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Warriors embark on lengthy road trip

There are road trips and then there are road stays. The Hawai’i basketball team will be doing more of the latter over the next week-and-a-half.

The Warriors departed Honolulu on Thursday night for a 10-day, three-game road trip that will take them to three remote cities, stretching as far north as Missoula, Montana, and then as far south as Ruston, Louisiana.

Hawai’i will play a non-conference game at Montana this Saturday, followed by Western Athletic Conference games at New Mexico State on Thursday, February 23, and at Louisiana Tech on Saturday, February 25.

All told, the Warriors will accumulate 10,439 air miles spread over eight separate flights on the trip.

“I’m looking forward to it,” Hawai’i head coach Gib Arnold said. “We’re going to some interesting places. Missoula is a long ways away, but it’s a different part of the world and I heard it was 28 degrees there yesterday, so I told the guys to pack their warmest sweatshirts they got. I think it’s going to be fun.”

As if the travel itself weren’t difficult enough, the Warriors will face three difficult opponents on the trip. Montana is on an eight-game winning streak and is 19-6 overall and tied for first place in the Big Sky Conference at 12-1.

New Mexico State is 19-8 overall and in second place in the WAC at 7-3; LaTech is just 3-7 in the WAC, but one of those wins came at Hawai’i.

The Warriors are 15-10 overall and in fourth place in the WAC at 6-4.

“You just take it one game at a time – win one, then another, then another, and the trip will go by real fast,” senior point guard Miah Ostrowski said. “You can’t think about how long you’re going to be up there, you just have to focus on what’s ahead for that game.”

The last time a Hawai’i team embarked on such a lengthy road journey was in 2003, when the Warriors played a BracketBusters game at Kent State, followed by conference road games at Tulsa and Rice. Hawaii went 1-2 on that trip, defeating Kent State, then losing at Tulsa and Rice.

After the game at Montana this Saturday, the Warriors will travel to El Paso, Texas, on Sunday, and stay there until the New Mexico State game. UTEP head coach Tim Floyd is a close friend of Arnold’s (they coached together at USC several years ago), and invited the Warriors to use the UTEP facilities in the days leading to the New Mexico State game.

“We’re going to kind of have a mini-training camp there, I guess,” Arnold said. “We’re going to use their academic facilities there as well and kind of keep it as a home away from home.”

The only “off day” the Warriors have scheduled for the trip is this Sunday, the day after the Montana game. They are scheduled to depart Missoula at 5 p.m. on Sunday, so Arnold said they might try to find something to do earlier in the day.

“I don’t know, maybe we’ll do some sledding or something, who knows?” Arnold said.

(WarriorInsider.com photos by Charles Simmons)

4 Comments

  1. Man, this is a long road stay. Take it one game at a time sounds like a good approach. Keep the coldness outside, not in the gym.
    Go Warriors!

  2. This Team Plays Rock-Steady More Nights than Not …
    And Keeps Improving …

    Heat Up The Nets, Chill the Grizzlies, Silence The Crowd !

    Then Steal Two More ….!

  3. let’s see if we go 2-1 on the road we’ll have at least secured a CIT bid.

  4. the well and often traveled rainbow warriors hit the road once more. hey, pretend you are in china on the way to japan. no probkem.

    hawaii will get the stick when it comes to travel schedules. it is what it is, man up, and bloody some knuckles.

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