By Brian McInnis
While senior forward Bill Amis (22 points and 12 rebounds) rightfully got much of the credit for Hawaii's huge 56-48 win at Louisiana Tech on Saturday, the Rainbow Warriors got much-needed support from junior guard Miah Ostrowski to help put the game away.
Ostrowski got a steal and fed Joston Thomas for an alley-oop basket, then grabbed a rebound as was fouled in the final minutes, making both free throws.
His two points and one assist in 12 minutes of play weren't outstanding in the box score, but were instrumental in UH (10-8, 1-5 WAC) ending its 13-game WAC road losing streak going back to 2008-09.
When coach Gib Arnold added Ostrowski to the team in December, it was a mystery if he would use the Punahou product (and UH football slotback) in meaningful game situations. The answer to that question has been a resounding yes. Look for more of that out of him in the second half of WAC play.
The Rainbows had a weightlifting session and shootaround in lieu of a full practice today, as they endured roughly 17 to 18 hours of travel getting back to Honolulu from Ruston, La., on Sunday. Another reason for no full practice — Arnold and assistant Benjy Taylor remained on the mainland for recruiting.
Associate coach Walter Roese took the reins, guiding the team through some good-natured shooting contests. Just about all the players had smiles on their faces; it's amazing to see what one win (especially on the road) can do for a team's spirits.
Arnold returns tomorrow night. Meanwhile, UH prepares for its opener of a three-game homestand on Thursday vs. Fresno State.
The UH women's basketball team had a chance to end its losing streak at Boise State on Saturday, but couldn't hold on and dropped its fifth in a row, 69-63.
In the loss, freshman forward Kamilah Jackson posted 22 rebounds, increasing her season average to 13.2 rpg and bumping her up to second in the country. Only Courtney Hurt of Virginia Commonwealth (13.3 rpg) averages more.
You'd like to think if Jackson grabs that many boards and starters Keisha Kanekoa, Shawna Kuehu and Megan Tinnin each go for 14 points or more, you'd have a good chance to win. But the Wahine (6-11, 0-4 WAC) must try to end the streak (and should) on Saturday at winless San Jose State (0-16).