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Warriors continue to impress in Summer League

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The University of Hawai’i basketball team continued to bring the excitement and drama to the Hawai’i College Basketball Summer League on Saturday night at Manoa Valley District Park.

The first game ended in bizarre fashion, with National Fire Protection Co. finishing the game with four players … and the win. National Fire beat Grantco Pacific, 92-83 in overtime, despite having two players foul out and another two leave the game with injuries.

UH sophomore forward Isaac Fotu had 18 points and six rebounds, and had to re-lace his basketball shoes for the overtime period to help lead National Fire to the win. The 6-foot-8 forward sat out most of the second half with a knee injury, and took off his shoes late in the second half when it appeared he would not return to action.

“I just got knocked and I wanted to go back in straight away, but the coach said better not risk it,” he said.

Fotu said he banged his knee against another player, and didn’t think the injury was serious. “It should be fine; I’m going to ice it,” he said after the game.

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National Fire had a 76-72 lead in the final minute, but UH redshirt freshman Aaron Valdes hit an improbable 3-point shot and got fouled with 7.0 seconds left. He hit the free throw to complete the four-point play and tie the score at 76.

National Fire’s Daniel Humphrey fouled out on the play. Moments earlier, UH freshman Stefan Jovanovic fouled out as well for National Fire, so the team played the final seven seconds with four players on the court.

Just before the start of the overtime, Fotu put his shoes back on to give National Fire five plaeyrs to start the overtime, and he scored the first points of the extra period. However, a little over a minute into the overtime period, National Fire lost another player – Mikeli Damuni – to injury, and so it closed the game with four players. Still, National Fire out-scored Grantco Pacific 16-7 in the extra period.

“I don’t think I ever won a game with four guys,” Fotu said.

Jovanovic, a 6-10 center, finished with 15 points, 10 rebounds and three blocked shots before fouling out for National Fire. It was his first game in the Summer League.

Junior guard Garrett Nevels was not in attendance for National Fire.

Redshirt freshmen Valdes and Caleb Dressler were impressive in defeat for Grantco Pacific. Dressler finished with 30 points on 14-of-21 shooting, and grabbed 17 rebounds. Valdes contributed 19 points – including four dunks – and seven rebounds, along with a highlight reel blocked shot.

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In the second game, Negus Webster-Chan had 34 points, 10 rebounds and five steals to help lead Solar Universe to a 118-114 victory over previously-unbeaten Central Medical Clinic in the second game. The 6-7 transfer from Missouri connected on 7 of 13 shots from 3-point range, as Solar Universe made 22 3-pointers.

Former UH standout Zane Johnson led Solar Universe with 42 points, including eight 3-pointers.

Senior guard Brandon Spearman also did his part, shooting 6 of 10 from 3-point range and finishing with 22 points. Redshirt freshman Dyrbe Enos also hit a crucial 3-pointer late in the second half and finished with three points and two rebounds.

Central Medical Clinic, Solar Universe and National Fire Protection Co. are all 4-1 in the Summer League.

Incoming recruit Quincy Smith was impressive in defeat for Central Medical Clinic. The 6-2 point guard finished with 41 points, 11 rebounds and three steals. Most of his points came on drives to the basket, as he shot 12 for 22 from the field and 15 for 18 on free throws.

“It went pretty well,” Smith said. “We didn’t pull out the win, but I had a good game with my teammates. It was fun, exciting for the fans to watch.”

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It was Smith’s first game in the Hawai’i Summer League, so he said it took him awhile to adjust to the playing stuyles of his teammates.

“Most of my game is attacking the rim and finding my teammates a little bit more,” he said. “I wasn’t used to the way these guys play, so I wasn’t sure where they were going to be when I drove to the basket so I was just trying to finish as strong as I could.”

Former UH forward Bill Amis added 25 points for Central Medical, and Kamehameha graduate and former Nevada football player Caleb Spencer added 20.

The Summer League will continue with two games on Tuesday night at Manoa Valley District Park.

(Photos courtesy Brandon Flores / www.brandonfloresphotography.com)

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29 Comments

  1. Terrific reporting and video as always Dayton. I got up extra early on a Sunday morning just to watch it. Mahalo!

  2. Mahalo Dayton!

    This group of preferred walkons, returning scholarship, and new recruits , might be Gib’s greatest potential of athletes from PG to Bigs he has had in 4 years! I know it is only summer league, however it seems like the guys are having fun. MAIN THING GUYS, don’t get seriously injured! STAY safe and healthy. Any bruises or strains rehab and rest and get stronger now, so when regular season comes around, you all will be ready to go!

    Exciting stuff, as Eagle and others say, still remains to be seen(play first half of regular season, and they are winning a lot, then we know)however, I love the talent, real upgrade all around and returnees have worked hard over summer!

    Great writeup and video Dayton!

    Uhfanzonly1.

  3. Hope Isaac’s knee is okay. Thought he should have stayed out of the overtime play, knee injuries can be risky. Isaacs looks a step quicker and very smooth on his spin moves attacking the rim. Expect big things from him this year. Needs to work on and take/make a quick 15 foot jumper to round out his game.

    Thought Negus and Quincy’s play stood out, both are fearless players. Negus displayed a low attacking dribble for a tall player, he’s quick off the first step and it is difficult to defend him when he has the ball. He was also bombing from the NBA 3 pt line. After watching Quincy play not too concerned about the PG position, he looks to play both sides of the court and displayed good court vision with couple of nice assists.

    Caleb is a space eater and was deceptively effective under the basket. Stefan is young, however, was impressed with his physical toughness. Just some observations….

  4. tako: thankyou for your observations. It seems to be a consensus, that Gib has brought in some athleticism, and talent. Just make sure the guys buy into team concept, keep APR good, bond, play good D and have fun, and win!

    Looks like potential for a very exciting team. Have to have Jrs. and Srs be leaders. Who knows even sophomore and true freshmen too!

    Mahalo for the report tako!

    Uhfanzonly1.

  5. Thanks, Dayton, Brandon, Clyde, tako, uhf, hm, sponsors, contributors…

    [It’s on the videos…They do the talkin’]

    ————
    jmo
    Looks like A Lot fewer pukas and question marks this year…
    Even the athletes have skills and confidence to take key (ex: game tying) shots…
    Not much hesitation (much results) from newcomers…used to getting results…
    Transfer sit-out rule should apply to ‘repeat’ transfers (how many get it right on their first try?)

  6. tako, I dont know what you mean by Caleb being a “space-eater” but I thought he was very effective under the circumstances. 30 points and 17 rebounds is nothing then? Even though Grantco lost their game last night I was extremely impressed by both Dressler and Valdez.

    The other UH players I saw in action.last night also did well – Fotu and Stefan.

    Ultimately its just a summer league game and there is no need to be so harshly critical whether on this page or in the bleachers.

  7. Being a space eater means someone who was very effective under the basket, someone able to control space, thus, it translated into pts and rebounds. As pointed out, he was “deceptively effective.” Love “space eaters” ’cause they create opportunities for their team mates. Sorry if you thought comments were harshly critical.

  8. watching summer league film 2 years ago til now looks like the UH players are much better…just waiting on film from Michael Thomas….is garrett nevels ok?

  9. Quincy Smith is legit, attacks the rim, quick, huge upgrade at the point. Webster-Chan is an upper echelon player definitely will be one of the top guards in the league when he plays. Nevels can get buckets. Fotu looks more agile. Dressler looks much improved. Spearman will get his. Jawato will get his. Shamburger and Smith running point is a back-court overhaul if you ask me for the better. Wonder where Rozitis is?

  10. Very impressed by Quincy Smith. He has another gear when in the lane. Great ups too when he crashes the board.

    Spearman and Fotu look ready for the season. They’re both in terrific shape, especially Fotu. He slimmed down.

    Dressler is exactly what this team needed. A big that can run the floor, finish in transition, and has soft hands. This was something we were all frustrated with Vander last year. He just didn’t have that soft touch in the paint. Might be too early to crown Dressler, but I like his game.

    Webster-Chan.. oh boy. Can’t wait to see him next year. He has NBA game. Good size, length, textbook shooting form, and deep range. Would like to see his mid-range game more.

    Valdes’s athleticism is bananas. He will bring much needed excitement when in the game.

    I’m really high on this year’s squad!

  11. S23A and all other posts about video hilites, returnees and newbies, DEFINITELY a more athletic and BBsmart team. Only summer league. Have to wait until they go against DI defenses, and referees not giving them the calls, however, the UH guys, even the alumni, are the class of this College summer leagues hands down.

    I hope, as others echoed, Nevels is good to go, not injured or otherwise! Q is an athletic PG, very under control, however , Gib never had a PG so far with that explosivness!, I mean 41 pts in a summer league game, and he was averaging 9 pts a game in JC? Even If Q can average 6 or 7 pts, 4 or 5 assists, and shoot over 80% FT, 48%FG, 37% occasional 3, and transition on offense and defense like he looks like he is able to, wow!

    We diehard Warrior, Bow or whatever MBB fans, are excited. And One, that Negus Webster-Chan, after one year in UH MBB system as RS and gets a little bigger and stronger, he is legit too.

    I agree with other post too, can’t wait to see Michael Thomas! He reminds me, they say he might be near 6’7″ tall now, a build like the ex recruit Dillon Biggs. If MT can bring a 3 game at the 4 or hybrid position, mid range to 3 ball range and to the rim, D and rebounding, shoots, team, looks much better, at least now, than past 2 years.

    Agree too, I always liked Caleb, the kid is BBIQ smart!, Good hands, shot and WILL PASS THE ball to open teammates, etc. not like VANDER..Vander hold onto ball Tooooo long. Wish Vander the best, However, I like what Stefan and Caleb are showing, they can develop and be effective for several years!!

    😀 Go UH MBB team, and thanks Dayton for video, and your hard work and real time reports!!

  12. Pauoa Boy: I think it was reported, Christian Standhardinger trying to make the German National Team, or at least working out with very high level team, and Davis Rozitis reported back to Latvia to train with Latvian National team. Pauoa, the good thing, Christian and Davis, are playing with mature, big, strong, men, can only help BOTH of them get tougher, no finger rolls, maybe more power dunks, and tomahawk lob slamma jammas.

    It seems like, UH with the addition of preferred walkon Flipovich, Dybe Enos, and I think one more roster RS walkon, has 16 guys on team,
    Amazing. Even if RS Flipovich, Jovanovich(I don’t know, unless, Stefan, just destroys and beasts against Caleb, and Davis…maybe he might have a spot on active roster bench this year, always good to have bigs that can play when UH goes against teams like Missouri , and the DHC teams.

    I wonder how that “tryout” with the 6’7″ JC forward soph incoming attending UH summer school went? How much skill? His family must have some money, they are paying his rooming and tuition for summer school so far, because of UH’s meterology program. The guy is 6’7″ 235. another, hybrid banger, would be interesting if he walked on and helped team as extra body for scout, or who knows?

    The UH BB team almost has as many members as Trapasso’s Baseball team!

    I love it. Lotta excitement in UH MBB land.

    On serious note: hope Fotu’s knee and Nko’ knees are okay, and Nevels is OKAY…no PROBLEM, everything cool. Nevels does tweet, I should check out his latest tweet. Garrett is a smart student too, Q smith, Stefan, Aaron V. Michael T and Michael H., Negus, shoots good job Gib, now you got it going right, get guys who will do well in school and stick out to graduation or guarnateed high league pro contract by jr or soph yr for north or 1 million, then UH MBB , is in another level of D! ball..

    Ahhhh, but it is only summer,. let the guys stay healthy,. ALL get into school and do super well fall semester, and bond as a super tight team, playing as eagle says to Win every game, refuse to lose. close out games, NOW is where good coaching comes in! Ball is in your hands Gib, go work the team into a good then a great team hopefully by next March Madness 2014!!

  13. Sorry I didn’t respond to the last article re: Fotu, but I have been busy on the phone to the consulate. Perhaps Tongator if you ring the consulate in Australia you would have more influence than me!!!!

    Thanks do Dayton for keeping us current about what is going on even though we are miles away.

  14. Sorry about the spelling errors!

  15. Why is the announcer commentating? I find it really annoying how he is doing that. People don’t understand the difference between the two. That being said everybody is producing really well except for Dybre Enos. I don’t know if it is because he isn’t in the right mindset but it isn’t good news. If Dybre Enos can’t produce how will he do against Division I players. Other than that the guys have been doing good. Dressler and Stefan (too lazy to spell out his last name) did good. I was waiting to see if they can play efficiently. Valdes, Smith and Nevels are doing great as well. Webster-Chan is great but wont play this season. We all know about Fotu and Spearman. But my main concern is Dybre Enos.

  16. For a summer league game, I think the announcer is doing a great job. Knows the players and adds excitement to the game. Pretty witty too. I remember when there was no announcer back in the day. Boring. To each his own I guess.

    I agree with you about Enos. Even for a walk-on, he needs to produce more in the summer league. Maybe he serves a specific player type for Gib in practice. I like his attitude tho.

  17. I knew from the beginning that enos isn’t even a d2 starter but I don’t know why u guys are concerned…he’s a walk-on, how many of our walk-ons have even stayed 2 years?….other than that the only thing I don’t like about our bigs is no jumping ability although fotu looks like he worked on it….valdes looks strictly like a hustle player like wiseman but with hops

  18. Spearman and NWC doesn’t seem fair in summer league.

    Also, looking at body type and skill set, Jovanovic and Dressler could be twins. (Just different hair cuts)

  19. Aussie mum, I hope Michael has managed to sort out his Visa by now, otherwise I might have to come over and sort out the staff at the consulate ….lol.

    The trouble is when you ring up it’s either answering service or it redirected to a call center somewhere in India and they just follow process with no flexibility.

    Anyway, hope we see the thunder from down under on summer league soon…

  20. Regarding reference to the possible 6′ 7″ walk on, believe I read somewhere his name is Malik Fields and currently he is playing for Clark Hatch Fitness in the summer league.

  21. I like the players that Arnold has amassed the interesting thing will be who will get the playing time. I think It will come down to cohesion and who plays the best defense.

  22. Hey, Mike H.,

    Hope Mummie’s cooking is not making you fat (joking)?

    A lots of storms but, no Thunder; Actions are fierce here in the Summer League
    Your CMC team is currently in a 3way-tie, each with a 4-1 record. If you’re here to create some typhoon for them then, they could be the only undefeated one (they missed you)!

    Good luck for a fast return (to see how good your teammate Quincy Smith is now, and better as your TEAMMATE in the regular season {you guys going to be tough, serious})!

  23. Hey, nice to hear from you Aussie Mum, Michael and our favorite Mum!, or one of many of the UH MBB team. Hey, maybe Tonganator, has to contact Tongan community in Australia, to go directly down to consulate, and explain, EMERGENCY, Michael is a student with the USA University of Hawaii, and needs to get into school and summer training, important for Michael , his Mum and the Warrior Ohana!

    I went through similar experience back in the day, with governmen and private agencies, best soloution, I got into my beat up volkswagen, after calling and writing every day for 2 weeks, and went to the door of the consulate, explained, to them what was going on, they gave me , the wait and see, I said I need to speak to supervisor, then administrator, then governor if need be. Within that day, papers were processed and I was set to go. I was respectful, however, very urgent and kept on pleading in person my case. It worked. Aussie Mum, if we could get dozens on this forum to flood that consulate with emails, helping to get Michael the VISA processed we will. Beaucracy!

    Hey , MIchael, it will be alright, you will be here very soon, keep shooting, getting bigger stronger, and more explosive, your UH teammates new and returning are turning out to be a very strong BB group. You guys have a potential to do well in BWC and hopefullly win the Rainbow Classic, the Diamond Head Classic, the Big West Tournament and go dancing in the NCAA’s, No joke! It looks like an awesome 2013-14 and 2014-15 seasons ahead!

    Best wishes Aussie Mum, strengthen that australian young man with your good cooking, and hope everything gets settles ASAP. We NEED MIKE. MIKE is the FACE of UH MBB. A very nice young aussie lad raised by fine parents!! As Tonganator says, UH team is asunder, without the “thunder from down under”, Michael ‘arper!!

    Aloha and Mahalo for your continued interest from down under Aussie Mum, you are good people!!

    Thank you!!

    Uhfanzonly1.

  24. Hey, Anyone,

    Volunteer to contact Hanabusa to refer this Mike H.’s or our frustration to her, we’ll see how EFFECTIVE she can be (quick)???

    Mahalo!

  25. As much as I liked Garrett Jefferson’s athleticism and defense… Quincy Smith and Garrett Nevels are both all around better players than Garrett Jefferson.

    This team is going to be way better than last year’s squad. There’s so much more speed on this year’s team. The three slowest players on the court were Vander, Jace, and Hauns who all finished their eligibility last season…. they will be replaced by quicker, more athletic players. Valdes, Smith, Nevels, Shamburger, & Thomas all can run. We pretty much know Shamburger, Spearman, Standhardinger and Fotu are starting, not sure who’s going to win the 5th starting spot. Could be anybody since Fotu can play both the 4 and 5 positions. Standhardinger can play both 3 and 4 positions. Valdes can play 2 or 3. Smith and Nevels look like they can play PG when needed. Gib has a lot of flexibility with this roster. That was an issue last year, as Gib couldn’t set a consistent roster, but in his defense, nobody played consistent enough to earn the starting role at PG, SG, or SF. The 2013-14 roster appears to be in better shape as 4 of the 5 starting spots presumably set pre-fall camp.

    Dressler moves well up and down the court and he has good hands and ball control. Not explosive and plays finesse, but looks like he has a nice array of scoring moves and understands how to handle the ball in traffic, unlike his predecessor. Hopefully Dressler has a nasty streak and gets more physical when he plays against real competition. He’ll need it to hang in there with opposing centers banging on him.

    Jovanovic looks like Dressler’s brother from a different mother…. similar build, similar styles. Rozitis is the senior big man and if he continues his improvement he probably earns more minutes as he’s very agile for his size and had success on top of the 3-2 zone UH used from time to time.

    Should be a really fun year!!!

  26. Thanks for everyone’s suggestions – trying my best with the consulate but also don’t want to get them “offside”. Michael is still working hard – in the gym everyday and eating me out of house and home!!!
    He is very keen to get back to his mates and that beautiful island/s that you all live on – wish I could get on the plane with him.
    I know he is well looked after in Hawaii and he will be “home” soon.

  27. It was a rather interesting night of basketball, not necessarily exciting like this past Saturday but interesting. Current rainbows who played tonight A Valdez, Q Smith, Dressler, M Thomas, and K Shambergler. Valdez showed a lot of athleticism and stamina with some ability to get into the lane. Q Smith did more of the same being able to find his way to the basket against less than adequate defense. Dressler was ok in that he can roll with a pass when open and get a bucket but he should have dominated when bill went to the bench. His team only had six players so he could have been tired. M Thomas seems to be just getting used to being here. I would red shirt him this upcoming year unless he breaks out of his shell. Shambergler didn’t get that much playing time because he arrived late and had virtually no warm up time. His shot slowly warmed up and he drove to the basket a few times. The true test of our players will come in their first weeks of practice in October. I hope Dayton can get some video of impromptu team scrimmages like last year.

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    My web site looks weird when viewig from my iphone 4.
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