Maui welcomes UH football team

April 13, 2009, 7:16 AM HST · Updated April 13, 4:25 PM
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By Fred Guzman
MauiToday.TV

An estimated 3,000 fans attended the University of Hawai football team’s visit to Maui on Saturday.

Hawaii went through practice drills and performed live 9-on-7 and 7-on-7 drills before inviting fans on the field for picture-taking and autographs.

This was a very nice outreach effort by head coach Greg McMackin to underscore his belief that this is truly Hawaii’s team.

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CHANGES:  There will be two new coaches at the University of Hawaii.  And neither change comes as a huge surprise.

On Saturday, UH men’s volleyball coach Mike Wilton said he would not return next year.  Out of respect for Wilton’s accomplished during a 17-year stint, we will give him the benefit of the doubt as say he’s retiring.

But after two seasons during which the once-proud program failed to reach the conference playoffs, it’s highly doubtful his contract would have been renewed had he wanted to return.  Further proof that Wilton wasn’t in line for an extension was his announced intention of serving as an assistant for the BYU women next season.

There was a time that men’s volleyball was a marquee program at Manoa.

In 1996, featuring Yuval Katz, UH suffered only one loss — in an epic five-game classic to UCLA in the NCAA title match.

Six years later, led by Costas Theochridis, UH won the national title only to have it vacated because of an NCAA ruling based on their star having played alongside pro players in his native Greece.

It was a foregone conclusion that UH would make a change in women’s hoops.  Jim Bolla has been on paid leave since Feb. 13 when the school began a probe into allegations that he kicked a player in practice.   The Rainbow Wahine finished with a dismal 8-23 record.

The new coach will not be in place before Thursday’s national letter of intent signing date and thus will essentially miss on a recruiting class.

UH BASEBALL:  You can bet your bottom dollar that UH’s pitchers couldn’t wait to get out of Reno.  Not because they dropped too much money at the tables.  The Bows’ hurlers were simply awful while dropping two of three in a weather-shortened weekend series originally scheduled for four games.

The Bows rolled into town with a No. 23 ranking and a three-way share of the WAC lead.  They left with marks of 21-12 overall and 4-3 in the WAC, largely because their pitchers gave up 30 earned runs – and 35 total – in 28.1 innings.

Things got off to a bad start Thursday as the Bows blew three leads in a 14-12, 12-inning loss, committing five errors and their six pitchers conceding 11 walks.

Hawaii was leading 4-2 going into the bottom of the second inning on Saturday when play was suspended because of bad weather.  Because the series was supposed to conclude with a twinbill on Saturday, the fourth game was cancelled.

WAC rules do not allow three games to be played in a single day.  Since  there is no home-and-home series, there is no way to make up the game.  That means the two teams will be one game short in WAC play.

On Friday, UH ace Jared Alexander up four runs on four hits in the first, marking the fourth straight start that he’s lasted three innings or less, although the Bows held on when play resumed on Saturday for a 13-11 win.  But UH then lost the nightcap, 10-5.

The Bows next host Sacramento in a four-game set that begins Friday.

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