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Youth programs contributing to growth of LHS volleyball team

By Staff | Aug 27, 2020

The team includes (from left): front — Hauyin Lau, Puhi Lindsay, Hokuula Godoy, Angel Camagay and Alexa Andaya; back row — Malia Pitzer, Jaki Kuuana, Kailani Medeiros Sodetani, Kalolaine Pasikala, Hailey Killet, Tricia Van and Shanelle Pasalo. Ihilani Garcia is not pictured.  

LAHAINA – The 2020 Lady Lunas volleyball season has been postponed, but the rising spirit of youth volleyball here on the West Side, bolstered by the intermediate school and club programs, will surely pave the way for future seasons for the high school team.

Guided by families such as the Akima, Kenolio, Dukes, Ganer, Murray, Dasugo and several others, volleyball has come of age in recent years as more and more younger student-athletes take to the game. In particular, the intermediate school and club programs have brought more kids to the volleyball court for the high school team.

At Lahainaluna, the girls volleyball team is led by head coach Trixy Ganer Nuesca, herself a product of the youth programs led in part by her parents, Charmaine and Hano Ganer. Coach Trixy, also in charge of the intermediate school program, is currently assisted by Joe Keanini, Jordan Saribay and Faavea Galoia in guiding the Lady Luna team.

Lahainaluna finished the 2019 Maui Interscholastic League season in fourth place but gained valuable confidence with strong performances over conference kingpins Kamehameha Schools Maui and King Kekaulike High School. Ganer Nuesca reports that the team lost seven seniors to graduation but will be counting on another senior laden line up to compete in the next season – whenever that occurs.

“We are a senior heavy team again with seven seniors, four juniors and one sophomore on the roster,” said Coach Trixy. “That’s why we need to concentrate on the younger players at the intermediate school level and on the club teams.”

“We are a physical team with good size, and we are a power hitting team. We haven’t been able to practice together yet, but the players have been working out on their own.”

The 2020 Lady Luna team is led by senior captain Jaki Kuaana, co-captain Alexa Andaya and classmates Hokuula Gadoy, Regina Marumi, Shanelle Pasalo, Ihilani Garcia and Malia Pitzer; juniors Hailey Killet, Kalolaine Pasikala, Kailani Medeiros Sodetani and Angel Camagay; and sophomore Malika Viela. The team manager is Maison Alexander.

“We’re just hanging on -hoping we’ll have a season. It will be sad if we don’t. We’ve been with the program for many years and have been able to instill proper values with the intermediate, club and high school programs. So, hopefully we’ll have a season. If not, it will be back to the drawing board for next season,” Coach Trixy concluded.