By KEVIN JAKAHI
Tribune-Herald sports writer
The four volleyball old friends won’t meet at the National Junior College Athletic Association Division I championships until it’s time to send someone home in the quarterfinals.
College of Southern Idaho (29-1) with setter Ashia Joseph (Waiakea, 2011) drew the No. 1 seed in the 16-team tournament, which runs Thursday-Saturday at Missouri State University.
North Idaho College (22-5) with middle blocker Leeta Grap (Hawaii Prep, 2012) is the No. 7 seed, Western Texas College (26-8) with defender Brooke Bloomfield (from Hilo) is the No. 11 seed, and Casper College (23-17) with libero Kanoe Kaaa (Kamehameha, 2011) is the No. 13 seed.
In a potential quarterfinal matchup, Bloomfield could be digging balls against Grap, her former teammate on the Imua club team, and in another possibility Joseph could be setting balls against Kaaa. Matches can be watched live on the website: www.njcaavbd1.com.
• Daniel Rasay (Konawaena, 2000): The third-year Menlo women’s coach has guided the Oaks to a 17-6 record, including a 14-match winning streak, and a spot in the NAIA national championships.
The Oaks swept Embry-Riddle last week to capture the California Pacific Conference tournament championship.
Menlo will play at No. 14 College of Idaho (21-6, 13-1 at home) on Saturday. The Oaks haven’t lost since Sept. 14.
• Makamae Namahoe (Hilo, 2010): The 5-foot-10 junior middle blocker for C.W. Post, a Division II school in Brookville, N.Y., leads the Pioneers with 357 kills or 2.79 per set and is second with 507 digs or 3.96 per set, a rarity for a middle.
She is trying to lead the Pioneers (22-12) to an East Coast Conference tournament championship and a berth in the Division II national championships. In the last two years, Dowling has swept C.W. Post in the first round.
The Pioneers play Bridgeport today to close the regular season. The conference tournament runs Friday-Saturday at New York Institute of Technology in Bridgeport, Conn.
In the good charm category, C.W. Post has beaten Dowling twice, in a sweep at home and a five-set marathon on the road. In the rematch, Namahoe posted a double-double with 15 kills and 16 digs.
• Kalei Kabalis (from Hilo): The Northern State (Minn.) senior outside hitter was named to the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference All-Conference first team in her only season. She leads the Division II Wolves with 318 kills or 3.21 per set and is second with 321 digs or 3.24 per set.
NSU (18-10) will play Wayne State (22-8) in the first round of the NSIC tournament on Friday.
• Kelson Kawai (Kohala, 2010): The junior wide receiver for Pacific (Ore.) was named Northwest Conference honorable mention. He had 30 receptions for 442 yards and six touchdowns for the Division III Boxers (3-6), who finished their season.
His teammates were freshman quarterback Warner Shaw and sophomore cornerback Daniel Chun, both Kamehameha-Hawaii graduates.
• Micah Miranda (Kealakehe, 2008): The senior midfielder was named to the California Collegiate Athletic Association All-Conference first team. The Wildcats (9-3-6), North division champs for three years in a row, lost to Cal State Stanislaus 3-2 in the conference tournament championship. Ranked fifth in the West Region, Chico State was left out of the six-team West Regional.
Miranda scored four goals and had one assist for the Wildcats, who entered the tourney with a 13-match unbeaten streak, snapped by Cal State Stanislaus in the championship.