Warrior Insider

The Inside Source for Hawaii Men's Basketball

Mustangs run wild over Warriors

The uniforms said Hawai’i, but the performance certainly did not look like the Hawai’i basketball team on Thursday night.

The Warriors had their worst showing of the season in an 88-59 road loss at Cal Poly. A crowd of 2,122 at Mott Athletics Center in San Luis, Obispo, Calif., watched the Mustangs surprisingly dominate the game in virtually all phases from start to finish.

“We’re not a particularly really quick team and we don’t have great shooters, but we are big and we are strong and so our strengths go back to getting the ball inside and when we miss get to the offensive glass,” Hawai’i head coach Gib Arnold said during a post-game radio interview. “If we don’t do that, if our strengths leave us, we’ve a very average team. Tonight we didn’t rebound the way we can, we didn’t guard the post the way we can and it looked like they were a step quicker in every little thing. It’s very frustrating.”


The Warriors dropped to 10-9 overall and are now in sixth place in the Big West Conference at 4-4. Cal Poly improved to 8-9 overall and is in a three-way tie for third place at 4-3.

Forwards Christian Standhardinger and Isaac Fotu scored 14 points each to lead the Warriors. Brandon Jawato added 12 points, including three 3-pointers, off the bench.

Senior center Vander Joaquim had his worst game of the season with two points and one rebound in 12 minutes.

“Vander was a mystery to me today,” Arnold said. “I don’t have an answer to why he wasn’t there tonight. Obviously we’re going to need him and have to get his mind right … it wasn’t physical, I think it was mental.”

The trio of Joaquim, Standhardinger and Fotu entered the game averaging a combined 23 rebounds per game, but they had a total of just nine against the Mustangs. As a result, Cal Poly out-rebounded the Warriors by a stunning 38-21 advantage.

Hawai’i entered the game ranked first in the Big West in rebounding, while the Mustangs were last.

“We haven’t had a game like that all year,” Arnold said. “Even against bigger and stronger teams.”

The Warriors opened the game with a 4-0 lead, but Cal Poly responded with a 14-0 run to take a 14-4 lead. The Mustangs led by as many as 16 later in the first half. A 3-pointer by Jawato just before the first half buzzer cut the Cal Poly lead to 38-26 at intermission.

However, Cal Poly opened the second half with a 15-3 run, and the Warriors never recovered.

The Mustangs finished the game with a .564 field goal percentage – the best by a Hawai’i opponent this season. The 29-point margin of defeat was also the largest of the season for the Warriors.

“It’s a good team but I do think we caught them at a great time,” Cal Poly head coach Joe Callero said of the Warriors. “That’s a tired team. You could see the fatigue they had in their legs and their eyes and their bodies.

“Our point was to be that aggressive and chase down offensive boards and make them have to defend … take their legs out. I think we showed that we were the fresher team.”

The Warriors shot 40 percent from the field, and had just eight assists against 13 turnovers, but it was the season-low rebounding effort that hurt them most.

Arnold shuffled his backcourt again, starting Manroop Clair and Brandon Spearman. Clair (26 minutes) got most of the minutes at point guard, and finished with three points and four assists.

Cal Poly’s starting forward tandem of Chris Eversley (19 points, eight rebounds) and Brian Bennett (17 points, nine rebounds) combined for 36 points and 17 boards. Drake U’u, a surprise starter at point guard for the Mustangs, finished with 14 points and eight assists.

It was the first of four consecutive road games for the Warriors. They will remain in Southern California today, and will play at UC Santa Barbara on Saturday.



  1. Positives: Roop started. Lost to team Cal Poly that beat UCLA at UCLA. They , the Mustangs play well at their home gym, very tiny one. Cal Poly has nice team colors, like the Warriors. Pretty decent educational school.

    Negatives: UH is not the team we thought they would be. Remember, we thought with UH’s size, and relatively decent athletes, the BWC was tailor made for them to compete, looks like the BWC nine other teams are getting better, while UH is regressing. Sad. Coach tried every combination, I don’t know about officials eagle, maybe, however, UH does not do good job of boxing out, and these smaller quicker teams are getting the rebounds on O and D, and a lot of Offensive boards for easy put backs. And all of these teams have hot, and good 3 point shooters.

    UH is in scramble mode. Painful game to watch, turned the PC off, after 12 minutes into second half. Came back later, and UH lost by almost 30 pts. Hope they can get UC Santa Barbara, otherwise, very bleak.

    UH team, keep up your studies and grades, school super important, let Coach figure out, how to get wins for final 10 BWC regular season games, 4 more at SSC and one home Bracket Buster, so have chance to get 5 at home, however UH team you still have to get at least 2 wins out of the remaining 6 road games, we know you all are hurting, however have to man up and step up,

  2. Hats off to Cal Poly. They placed a beating on Hawaii. The most surprising stat was the rebounding margin.

    With that said, there are many problems that need to be fixed. I think the team should to revert back to being a grind-it-out team like in Coach Gib’s first year. Slow the pace down, look for high percentage shots through ball movement and good screening, and most of all concentrate on defense.

  3. And , of course TURNOVERS, killed any type of continuity. Unforced, Cal Poly was not even pressuring. Just slopply with ball, the whole team.

    UH should go to Golden Corral tomorrow for dinner, relax, go to a good movie, and get back in gym and get Bigs playing big, and Strong, our Bigs, are finesse players, not really physical or super strong, And our smalls, are not as quick or really great decision makers or ball handlers, Team is not a Team right now.

    Maybe go back in time, when UH started season, remember Vander was recovering from MCL tear? That starting 5 or Jace, Hauns, Christian, Isaac and Vander(even though 70%) was really cohesive, maybe go back to upperclassmen starting, that same 5, , play with heart, basketball smarts, beast on the boards, and really great D, then have Spearman, Jawato, Roop, Ozi, Davis come off the bench, in fact that second unit sounds pretty good, energy, I think Gib is trying, nobody stepping up or they are confused, or physically and mentally drained.

    Fellow fans, here and abroad, This game Sat Jan 26 2013 at UC Santa Barbara is a HUGE game, sets up momentum and confidence to win any games and have shot at winning season and post season,

    Wow, the game was awful, the MBB athletes still good guys however, and they are hurting, Gib have to work some miracle!

  4. Actually UH had only 13 turnovers, got killed on Offensive glass. And Defensive board. Bad game, I guess, Clear and Go as JJ would say. Have to , just have to get UC Santa Barbara guys.

    Defense and pound, never mind trying to get into up and down game, if don’t have finishers, agree with DK on that. Yes DK, Gib has to go back to slow down and pound. Yet their defense just cannot , at this time match up or track down 3 ball shooters, incredible, any team in BW can out shoot, and maybe outrebound or stay on glass with UH.

    Yes, Gib, go back to that original Pound inside, slower paced, upperclassman starting five, then let the high energy guys come in. The guys seem not on board, Gib have to figure out something fast.!

  5. That was an embarrassing performance from start to finish. Very disappointed in the effort.

    One thing I have noticed is that as good as Vander and Fotu are at post, they shy away from contact when trying to get their shot. Vander and Fotu haven’t been strong with the ball and defenders are able to push them away from their comfort spots. Both players have excellent jump hooks, but jump hooks don’t draw fouls and free throw attempts. Now that there’s plenty of film to analyze, Big West coaches adjusted their defending of Vander and Fotu to take away their jump hook. This is why I was hoping Vander would have developed a left hand move, but looks like he’s only got the hook and a mid-range jumper.

    Defenders are bodying up Vander and he’s been trying to either shoot over them or maneuver for a contested shot, which is exactly what the defense wants. Neither Vander or Fotu are using their size to power through defenders arms to draw fouls. Don’t be afraid of the charge. All they have to do is aim for the defenders hip when driving in. Refs rarely call offensive fouls when the contact isn’t centered on the defenders body.

    WIth UH’s considerable size and strength advantages, there’s no reason why UH should’t have significantly more free throw attempts vs every Big West opponent, except for Long Beach. The Beach attacks the rim relentlessly so they draw a ton of fouls. The lack of free throw margin just shows that UH isn’t being physical or aggressive on offense.

    Standhardinger was non-existent in the first half, but he finally got aggressive in the second half. When he decides to penetrate, not many guys can stop him, but he rarely gets aggressive. I watched Standhardinger take Mike Moser & Quintrell Thomas to the hole over and over again vs UNLV. Both Moser & Thomas are long, strong and athletic defenders, so there’s no reason why Standhardinger can’t do the same vs smaller, weaker Big West defenders.

  6. Any reason why Jefferson played 2 minutes? We needed some defense. What’s going on.

  7. Vander has got to stay out of foul trouble… 4 of the last 5 games Vander hasn’t been able to stay on the floor because he’s picking up fouls. I still think he’s not fully recovered from his knee injury because he still looks much slower than last year. Vander has gotten a lot bigger, I wonder if his added muscle has slowed him down a little, but I still think he knee is an issue. Also his body language really effects the team. When things aren’t going well, his attitude can drag the team down. That’s something he hasn’t learned to control yet.

    The other factor is that Gib needs to stick to a starting lineup. I totally understand that neither PG has earned the trust to be a permanent starter, but I think Gib needs to make a choice and stick with it.

    UH is running into the issue of guys not having a defined role. Perfect example of a player playing a defined role is Rozitis. He knows his job is to relieve Vander and provide a spark to the defense and his length at the top of the 3-2 point zone creates an unusual look. Another example of a perfect role player is Jefferson. He’s an absolute lock down defender and he know’s what his job is when Gib calls his number.

    Spearman is another guy that I really like because he’s high energy and can attack the rim. His minutes have been so inconsistent and he’s a guy that doesn’t have a role.

    When Jawato was coming off the bench, he knows he’s in to provide 3pt shooting. I was a big proponent of him starting, but after seeing him play extended minutes, his productivity has dropped off considerably. I back track a little and say he best used coming off the bench.

    I like Oz as a starter, and he has shown he can help at running the point. I think he’s a guy that needs to start. He’s also pretty good defensively because of his length.

    It’s a tough situation for Gib because he has 12 talented guys and not enough minutes or basketballs to go around. Guys like Spearman, Jefferson, Oz, Roop, Tavita, & Hauns that don’t know how much they’ll play on any given night. Most coaches believe all players should be ready when called upon, but the reality is that players play better when there is consistency in their minutes.

  8. Can we please take down the video from last nights game at the top of the article? I don’t think we need to see that nightmare anymore.

  9. This team is going thru a really bad stretch right now, they need to refocus quick or this could be damaging to Gib’s tenure.

  10. Way true UH Athlete! Is there anyone on the team other than Hauns that can set a real screen??? This is D1 ball people and that is a skill learned in rec league. How many 3 points were lost because the screen was called a foul? And yes flow of and in the game is very real. I have never seen such random and instant subbing.Leaders of the team need to lead. Come on UH Warriors YOU GOT THIS! Don’t let this be a final set back!
    Regroup and come out fighting!

  11. Remember last year they lost by 40 something points at new mexico state and came back a few weeks later and almost beat them in the wac semis. They will be back, and I have a feeling Hauns will be a big part of that.

  12. we couldn’t wait for men’s basketball to start due to a horrific football season…now it’s vice versa again

  13. Our 2013 season is in a crucial time right NOW, it’s time to stop tinkering constantly with the line ups, 19 games into the season, Play the best Five already, from what i have seen ,constantly shuffling leads players to not know their role , no continuity . Can we play some man on ball defense, the zone aint working. Best five athletes and let it roll. Come on Warriors the losing has to STOP NOW, finish your plays. Box out , rebound for goodness sake. Winning and nothing else is acceptable, think it and do it. Let’s Go!

  14. Coach has to come up with a good game plan and find a way to pump these guys up for Saturday’s game. Thursday’s game was frustrating for everybody.

  15. Lightning does not strikes the same ? but, disasters do!
    LL & SS went to bed early on Tuesday night (tired?).
    Another loss, due to coaching failures on basic fundamentals..

    LL & SS went to bed early on Tuesday night.
    Another loss due to coaching failures on basic fundamentals..

    Athletes, maintain your academic requirements for scholarship is very valuable.
    Pay strict attention to it as always till your graduations.
    Keep-on self-conditioning & skill development individually for it’ll be beneficial in preparation for your own future!

    Enjoyable Warriors Basketball junkies not getting their fixes.. (too bad).
    Chinsanity maybe started the count: 0-1, 0-2..

  16. I love this team. But unfortunately I predict it will be like last years team at 16-16. There is no cohesion and team unity and it is not living up to its potential. Beeman 1st year wiith Wahine basketball is doing much better than Gib’s third year. Gib is not improving year by year. I’m not saying let Gib go but something needs to be improved. I’m not going to be arm chair know it all At this point, Gib is doing as badly as Bob Nash last year of coaching here. I’m getting tired of turnovers after turnovers and over and over same mistakes. At this rate we may win only 1 0r 2 games rest of the year. But I still love this team. I hope they all graduate scholar athletes. After all, a college degree lasts forever, basketball does not.

  17. Ratbird:

    you make excellent points. Team is going backwards. Should be peaking at this time, nearing 20 games into season. Will take a big turn around. I think , as much as we like the players, maybe they are not the athletes we thought they were. Gib has to go back to starting, the original 5 at beginning of year, even if they are not as good shooters or athletic, the team is so confused , what D to run, What Offensive set, team, even running sets, whomever the point guard or forward, as soon as the BW teams lock down on UH, The other teams scouted UH so well, they know every play UH has, and that they are going to Bigs, with kickout.

    I wish UH MBB team and Gib can prove us wrong, and get this thing turned around, would make for a better March 2013 , that is for sure. Hey UH see if can get a big time win at Santa Barbara!

  18. Starting lineup shuffling, inability to set screens and box out, undefined roles, sloppy execution leading to TOs… These are not due to the players. The coaches really should take responsibility for these losses. I hope we don’t lose players this summer due to their realization that if they stay here, they’ll only have a marginal improvement in their skills, strategies, and knowledge of the game because the coaches, although they might be great guys too, basically can’t coach.

  19. We need to let the seniors lead this team. Vander and hauns need to be on the floor 35 + mins a game. Gib subs way to much and never let’s hauns get into a grove. Vander needs to step it up as he should be dominating. Would help if our guard play was better but we have to make it work with what we got. We CAN win the Big West, just have to step it up a little and start playing smart!


  21. DormDad21:

    Agree with you on that point. The Tri Captains are Vander, Hauns and Jace, back in beginning of season, when UH was running well on transition and half court, those three, the seniors were on the court with Christian and Spearman or the Upperclassmen, then Fotu, Davis, Clair, Jefferson would come in to spell them. Now Ozi can help out too as a 3 man., or back up ball handler.

    Vander: Has to use BBIQ smarts, the BWC officials are calling everything he does a foul, or 3 second call, travel, etc. Vander has to be smart, and don’t do the things the referees are looking for. You know Vander is a marked man, funny , pre season all BWC pick, and probably will be for post season awards, however Vander has to be Akamai, and he gets to play more,, He has to block out on rebounds, track his man, move his feet, defend the rim, just fundamental basketball for the post, then make his decision with ball down low quickly, shoot, kick out, shoot or kick out, He playing at 28 or 30 minutes, without foul trouble, the BWC teams have hard time stopping him one on one, it is all the doubles and triple downs that make him panic.

    Hauns: injured, amazing he played, Hauns NO FEAR, use smarts too, if 3 ball not falling, drive and get fouled or finish at rim or dish, and Rebound from the 3 spot and Defend like no tomorrow. He is valuable too as a senior and leader.

    Jace: Strong, ONE time in game against Poly, he drove to the rim and scored for layup, wish he would attack more, he is the leading assit man in BWC, so once again, BB smarts, he is senior, and leader. Dorm Dad, you are right, SENIORS have to step up, stay on court, and help team to WIN, they are so Vital to team along with uppercalssmen, Spearman, Christian , Davis, and Jefferson, those guys lead, by playing near flawless ball, UH can be successful.

    A lot of fans frustrated, however, still 10 more regular season BWC games and 1 more Bracket Buster at SSC, so 11 more games to go before, BWC tourney, hope they can start winning at Santa Barbara, and get on a roll and get double digit wins in BWC play.


  22. Just an observation, 19 wins with some of Nash players( Amis,Barnes, Johnson and Thompson) and 16 wins with only 1 of Nash player, Johnson. The current roster is totally all of Gib’s choices. He is sold us on his ability to recruit Top Level Talent.
    His office is lined with all the top players jerseys he is credited with recruiting while at his various jobs. You mean the best he could do to get a point guard is Jace Tavita, Manrcoop Clair, Brandon Jawato, Jefferson and Brandon Spearman. If Micah didn’t fall in his lap he wouldn’t have won 16 games last season. Tavita and Jawato have been in the program 2 years so you should know their capabilities after a year. There is something going on with Hauns he isn’t the same player we saw last season and this summer. Sometimes you can over coach and sometimes you can under coach but if players buy what you are selling as a coach, they will be motivated to give max effort each time they take the floor. I don’t see that level of effort from this team. We played a weak non conference schedule prior to the DHC.and we are in a weak Big West and we can’t get it done. I don’t put the blame all on Gib, his staff are all order takers. They don’t have an identity of their own and Hawaii is too remote for 1 man to handle. We are putting our hopes next season in the hands of Keith Shamburger, I think we should expect more from a guy who promoted himself as a tireless recruiter, who have travelled the world to find players. Why not just concentrate on players in the 50 states first because what you are bring in from Europe isn’t going to get it done. Top players in Europe stay home and make money. The marginal players will leave home but they next coaching to reach their full potential and this staff hasn’t prove they can develop players. I hope that this staff prove me wrong and turn things around.

  23. Maybe the team missed the coaching of Walter Roese. Just a thought, but maybe Gib Arnold should look for a tough defensive minded assistant and also an an offensive minded assitant. Not sure if Taylor, Akana, or Fisher giving everything that the teaching and coaching of the players. The first two have been here now going on 3 years while Fisher is a full time assistant this year.

    Personally, I like the uptempo game, ala UNLV Runnin Rebels of the Jerry Tarkanian teams. I don’t like the slow down game.

  24. If you’ve ever been to one of Gib’s practices, you would know that aside from warm-ups and position group drills, for a practical purposes, Gib does ALL the coaching. When the full team is on the court, you barely hear a peep from any of the other coaches. So if you want to know what’s up with the coaching, it’s all Gib.

    No matter how you cut it, whether you fault the players or fault the coaching, this decidedly mediocre team is Gib’s team – no ifs, ands, or buts. Is it a terrible team? Of course not. Is is better than Bob Nash’s teams? Yes. But if you also ask, is this the exciting, up tempo, explosive pro style team that Gib suggested he would put together here? Far from it, and I don’t see the team getting any closer to that illusion.

    Is it folly to think we can have a great basketball program out here in the middle of the Pacific? Perhaps so. But seeing as Gib is by 6 figures+, the highest paid coach in UH history, and seeing as Gib is by a significant margin, the highest paid coach in the Big West conference, I think we deserve a lot better than we’ve got.

    Gib has another third of this season, and another full season on his contract to deliver the goods. For our sake, good luck to him. There are no more excuses.

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