By Brian McInnis
Not to be forgotten among the maelstrom that is a Gib Arnold spring recruiting period is the UH women's basketball team.
Rainbow Wahine coach Dana Takahara-Dias announced on Wednesday the signing of 6-foot guard Ashleigh Karaitiana out of Endeavour Sports High School in Australia.
Karaitiana averaged 24 points, 9.5 rebounds and 4.2 assists per game in New South Wales State Youth League play, and also played as an amateur in the Australian Women’s National Basketball League.
“She will be an exceptional collegiate player. Her resume is quite impressive as it is, and she’s only a youngster yet,” Takahara-Dias said.
She hailed the signing as a re-opening of a pipeline between UH and Australia. Several of the program’s top players have come from Down Under.
“That was one of our program’s goals, was to re-establish recruiting ties with Australia. We’ve had good success with Tanya Smith, Raylene Howard, and Kylie ‘Page’ Galloway."
Karaitiana was visited last summer by then-UH assistant Serenda Valdez.
The Wahine have two more scholarships to give for the 2011-12 season to reach their allotment of 15. A position of need is point guard, though the team did sign JUCO transfer Jasmine Ray in the fall to be a ball-handler.