Wildcats’ Molina state’s top cager
The awards continue to roll in for Konawaena sophomore star Chanelle Molina.
Gatorade has selected Molina as its 2013-14 Gatorade Hawaii Girls Basketball Player of the Year.
Molina is the third Gatorade Hawaii Girls Basketball Player of the Year to be chosen from Konawaena High School and joins former Gatorade Hawaii Girls Basketball Players of the Year from the Big Island: Aliyah Pana (2012-13, Hilo), Dawnyelle Awa (2011-12, Konawaena), Kanisha Bello (2008-09, Waiakea), Nancy Hoist (2003-04, Konawaena), Jennifer Kaeo (1988-89, Waiakea) and Kalei Namohala (Waiakea, 1987-88).
The 5-foot-6 sophomore guard averaged 23 points, 8.5 rebounds, 5.4 steals and 5.4 assists per game while shooting 77 percent from inside the arc, leading the Wildcats (25-4) to the Division I quarterfinals. A two-time First Team All-Tournament selection, Molina was named the 2014 Big Island Interscholastic Federation Player of the Year.
The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the court, distinguishes Molina as Hawaii’s best high school girls basketball player.
Now a finalist for Gatorade National Girls Basketball Player of the Year award announced later in the month, Molina joins an elite alumni association of past state girls basketball award-winners, including Candace Parker (2001-02, Naperville Central HS, Ill.), Diana Taurasi (1998-99 &1999-00, Don Antonio Lugo HS, Calif.), Maya Moore (2005-06 Collins Hill HS, Ga.), Rashanda McCants (2004-05, Asheville HS, N.C.), Shyra Ely (1999-00, Ben Davis HS, Ind.) and Lisa Leslie (1988-89, Morningside HS, Calif.)
Molina has maintained a 3.0 GPA in the classroom. She has volunteered locally on behalf of the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association’s Pink Zone initiative to promote breast cancer awareness and as a youth basketball coach.
“Chanelle Molina is an extremely coachable player,” Konawaena head coach Bobbie Awa said.
“She is the type of player who will work hard and then work even harder after that. She’s never satisfied and she always wants to learn more and continue to improve.”
Last year, Hilo High junior Aliyah Pana was named the Hawaii Gatorade Player of the Year.
Pana led the Vikings to a BIIF runner-up finish and fourth-place finish in the state Division I tournament this past season.
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