By BILL O’REAR
Tribune-Herald sports editor
Chaminade University wanted to prove that its early season win over the University of Hawaii at Hilo was no fluke.
On Friday night the visiting Silversword women did just that – hitting 10 3-pointers and outplaying the Vulcans in an impressive 74-57 Pacific West Conference win before about 125 fans at the UHH Gym.
In the late men’s game, the Vulcans battled the Silverswords in a contest that finished after the Tribune-Herald deadline.
Senior guard Glacen Florita scored 25 points, including 3 of 4 treys, to lead the Chaminade women (3-16 overall, 3-10 PacWest). Freshman guard Kristle Henry followed with 11 points while teammates Sabrina Angle and Kennedi Akana each added nine.
The visitors also drilled 10 of their first 14 3-pointers to build a 20-point lead midway through the second half and held off cold-shooting UHH (6-11, 5-8). The hosts pulled to within 65-54 on Charlotte Rode’s layup with 2:03 remaining before the Silverswords knocked down several free throws at the end to extend the final gap to 17.
In their first meeting Dec. 2 in Honolulu, the Silverswords surprised the Vulcans, 73-69, in a close PacWest encounter. But on Friday, Chaminade jumped to a quick 7-0 lead and made seven of their first eight treys to carry a 38-26 lead into the half.
Senior Kamie Imai and junior Danielle Kooyman each had 10 points to lead the Vulcans, who shot just 24 percent (12 of 50) from the field and 6 percent (1 of 16) on 3-pointers.
“I’m very pleased with the win,” Chaminade coach Bobby Keanini said. “It’s the first time all year that we’ve put a whole game together. The girls are working hard and getting better. It’s a really good group to work with.”
The Silverswords shot 36 percent (19 of 53) from the floor. But it was their red-hot 3-point shooting and rock solid free-throw shooting (26 of 33) that made the difference.
The UHH teams next hit the road for conference games at Dixie State (Feb. 13), Cal Baptist (Feb. 15) and Azusa Pacific University (Feb. 17) before closing out the regular season with home games against Holy Names (Feb. 20), Notre Dame de Namur (Feb. 24), Fresno Pacific (Feb. 27) and Hawaii Pacific (March 1).
The top six teams in the final regular-season standings earn berths in the PacWest men’s and women’s tournaments, in March at Point Loma Nazarene in San Diego, Calif.
At UHH Gym
Chaminade 38 36 — 74
UHH 26 31 — 57
For men’s coverage, visit www.hawaiitribune-herald.com