Lady Lunas water polo team competed in state tournament on Oahu
LAHAINA — Lahainaluna High School water polo coach Will Hutchison is a man with a keen sense of history. He is, after all, a history teacher at Lahainaluna and has guided the Lady Lunas to four straight Maui Interscholastic League championships, a 40 match regular season winning streak and four consecutive top five finishes at the state tournament. His teams have been there, done that and learned for the future.
“We’re learning to play the aggressive style of the Oahu schools,” explained Coach Will recently from poolside at the Lahaina Aquatic Center during a practice break as the Lady Lunas prepared for the 2010 state tournament that was played at Veterans’ Memorial Aquatic Center on Oahu, May 5-8.
“We’ve learned a lot from competing at states, and we’re hoping to get by the quarterfinal and semifinal rounds to get a shot at the championship. It’ll be a tough go to get through the ILH (Interscholastic League of Honolulu) teams, but I think we’re up to the task,” he added.
The 2010 Lady Lunas are led by captains Kayla Wall and Jenae Kruck, both seniors and four year letter winners, and junior goal keeper Gina Bella Mata’afa.
Seniors Jennifer Santos and Kelly Kohls are three year players, Sienna Nelson has two years experience and Zeena McIntyre round out a strong leadership core for Hutchison, who is assisted by Carol Rosetta and Jake Rodrique this season.
Also bringing leadership to the pool for Lahainaluna are juniors Koral Gill, Kamaehu Alboro, Kristin Fuller, Malia Moore, Dezi Acker, Jessye Acker, Emma Baccar and Ciara Allen.
Sophomores on the roster are Kanoe Dodd, Bella Pinto and Samantha Feyen.
Freshmen players on the squad are Mahea Kaaihue-Falahee, Hannahlore Rolfing and Bridget Joy.
“We’re kind of an inexperienced team in terms of playing against the Oahu level of teams, but we went up for some practice scrimmages with Punahou and Kamehameha and that will help us out,” explained Coach Will.
“The important thing is that they’re buying into the team concept of our program,” the dedicated coach/teacher continued. “They’re hard workers and quick learners doing a good job of picking up some new offensive and defensive concepts we put in. We’re starting to use some isolation offensive sets and zone defenses with double teams—which are hybrid zone presses.”
“All-in-all, its been a fun time with this team,” said the bright-eyed, jovial Hutchison. “As always, we are thankful to the community for their support of the water polo program, and especially to the County of Maui and the lifeguard crew led by Phil Link who always keep the pool in great shape. Also, thanks to athletic director Scott Soldwisch for his help. We are grateful to all and hope to thank everyone by playing well at states.”