Warriors will play Chaminade on Moloka’i this season
Friendly neighbors will meet on the Friendly Island for the first time when the Hawai’i basketball team plays Chaminade in a regular-season game on Molokai on December 15.
The game was announced this week as a late addition to the 2012-13 schedule for the Warriors, after some last-minute logistics were worked out in time to make it happen.
“Finally we were able to work out everything so that we can go play on Moloka’i and I think it’s great,” head coach Gib Arnold said. “It’s something we’ve wanted to do. Since I got this job, we’ve tried to take our game to all the Neighbor Islands.”
It will be the third consecutive year that the Warriors will play a game on a Neighbor Island. In 2010, they played at Lahaina, Maui; in 2011, they played at Kona, Hawai’i, and at Wailuku, Maui.
“It’s been fortunate that we’ve been able to work it out every year,” Arnold said. “The people of Moloka’i really made this possible in helping us out … Lana’i and Kaua’i, they both got gyms and so anywhere there’s a gym we’re going to try and make it happen.”
UH and Chaminade are located about one mile apart, but the teams agreed to play the game on Moloka’i to give the fans on that island a rare opportunity to watch college athletics. Although Chaminade is a NCAA Division II program, the final result and statistics will count on the Warriors’ record.
The game will be played at Moloka’i High School Gymnasium – also known as “The Barn” – which seats around 2,000. Chaminade is actually the host team for the historic event, and will be the designated “home” team for the game.
“This wouldn’t be possible without Chaminade,” Arnold noted.
It will be a homecoming for UH assistant coach Brandyn Akana, who graduated from Moloka’i High School in 1992. He led the Farmers to a league title his senior season, and was named the league’s Player of the Year.
“Coach Gib told me ‘Brandon, if we go there we better get a good crowd,’ so I promised him a good crowd,” Akana said.
The game will be just the fifth regular-season meeting between the Warriors and Silverswords, and the second time on a Neighbor Island. In 2003, the teams played in Lahaina during the Maui Invitational tournament. The Warriors own a 3-1 career record against Chaminade (the teams have met several other times in exhibition games over the years).
The addition to the schedule gives the Warriors 30 regular-season games for the 2012-13 season.