Journey back in time
That's what it was late last night for Hawaii coach Gib Arnold and one of the Rainbow Warriors, junior point guard Miah Ostrowski.
UH practiced in Punahou's Hemmeter Fieldhouse late last night because all of the UH gyms — the Stan Sheriff Center, Gyms 1 and 2, and Klum Gym — were booked for intramurals. The team drove the short distance from the Manoa campus and went from about 8 to 10 p.m., right after Arnold arrived back in Honolulu from a recruiting trip to California.
Some of the decor was different, but was essentially the same gym both used to play in — Ostrowski just a few years ago as a Buffanblu all-state player, and Arnold for two years in the 1980s, when he earned Gatorade Player of the Year honors.
"I don't think we had the fans," Arnold said, looking up at the rafters. "They've actually done a little remodeling. It's a little brighter than I remember. But yeah, the same gym. Punahou had a game tonight (the ILH playoffs) but we were able to sneak in right after."
"It was good fun," said Ostrowski, who attempted some 35-footers from familiar spots after the 2-hour session. "We got new colors in here and everything, but it was good to come back and see some of the people that used to work here. It was fun. I felt like I had an advantage in here.
"(The rims) look a little smaller than the ones at UH, but it felt good though."
The Rainbows (13-10, 4-7 WAC) play Nevada (9-14, 6-4) on Monday at the Stan Sheriff Center. It was UH's first full practice since losing at Idaho last Saturday.
"The break's been great, the guys lifted and did individual workouts," Arnold said. "It was good to get legs back and all those things. But tonight was good, because we had to get a sweat, we had to go up and down as a team, just get back to doing what we're doing."
On his extended road trip in Idaho and California for recruiting, Arnold had this to say:
"It went good. Probably was able to see about eight or nine players, in a bunch of games, a bunch of practices. Saw three or four different practices, workouts or games a day. It was good to be able to have that little break-off in the middle of the season. Normally you don't have that. You have to be able to take advantage of it."
How about another flashback?
Astute Rainbow Wahine basketball fans might remember Idaho coach Jon Newlee losing his temper late in the Idaho-Hawaii game at the Stan Sheriff Center two years ago.
It was a precursor of sorts to his finger-wagging antics at UH coach Dana Takahara-Dias in the handshake line following the Wahine's win over UI last week. Newlee, a former UH assistant, took a complaint to the WAC head of officials about a Keisha Kanekoa intentional foul (or not so intentional, after I viewed the replay several times).
Coincidentally, both incidents involved his same player, Rachele Kloke, taking contact from a Wahine. Two years ago, UH trailed late in the game at the Sheriff and needed to foul a Vandals player to have a chance at a comeback. Idaho would hold on to win 63-60, but not without some drama.
Wahine guard Megan Tinnin applied the foul on Kloke, who tumbled over some chairs on the end of the bench. An irate Newlee reacted immediately.
Tinnin recalled the episode prior to the team departing for Reno, Nev., this week. She felt Kloke oversold the contact for the officials.
"He cursed at me. Me in particular," Tinnin said. "They ran this play set up at halfcourt, and all they do is run out into nowhere. They don’t have designated spots they run to, they just kind of like run. And they’re just running people over as they’re going. So she runs me over because we needed to foul them and get the ball back. I go to foul her and ... she falls over the chairs like I intentionally fouled her.
"(Newlee) goes in my face and just starts cussing at me. That was an incident, and then obviously the other night he wasn’t too happy with how everything (happened).
We’re being the better team right now and ignoring what they have to say, and keep playing."
Should be a VERY interesting game should the Wahine meet the Vandals again in the WAC tournament. UH (8-15, 2-8 WAC) plays at Nevada (16-7, 5-5) tomorrow.