The University of Hawaii women’s basketball team (15-7, 7-2 Big West) takes its seven-game win streak on the road this week to take on UC Riverside (15-8, 6-3 BWC) on Thursday Feb. 12 and Cal State Fullerton (9-12, 3-5 BWC) on Saturday, Feb. 14. The Rainbow Wahine currently sit atop the Big West alone in first place. But there are four teams just one game back—including UC Riverside, led by conference Player of the Week Brittany Crain, who along with her fellow Highlanders are on a five game win streak of their own.
The Rainbow Wahine went 4-0 during their most recent four-game homestand which propelled UH to the league lead with wins over Long Beach State, CSUN, UC Santa Barbara, and Cal Poly. UH has won 12 consecutive home conference games dating back to last year. On Saturday, the ‘Bows snapped a five game losing streak against Cal Poly with a 79-64 win. Senior Shawna-Lei Kuehu led the way with a game-high 22 points, 18 of which came in the first half as UH built a 39-31 halftime lead. Kuehu, who missed UH’s loss to the Mustangs in California earlier this season, finished 10-of-12 from the field and surpassed the 20-point mark for the fourth time this season and sixth time in her career.
UH broke open the game early in the second half as the Rainbow Wahine out-scored the Mustangs 13-4 to build its largest lead at 52-35 less than four minutes in. The run was highlighted by a pair of 3-pointers by Ashleigh Karaitiana and Morgan Mason and the Mustangs would not get closer than eight the rest of the way. Karaitiana finished with 12 points, three rebounds and two blocks while Destiny King again threatened a double-double with 10 points and nine boards. Mason finished with seven points and six assists.
Overall, Kuehu continues to lead UH averaging a career-high 12.3 points per game. For the first time this season, she is second on the team with 6.3 rebounds per game, but she still leads UH with 29 steals, 26 blocked shots and is tied for third with 48 assists. Karaitiana and King are tied for second on the team scoring 10.5 points per game. Karaitiana leads UH with 29 made 3-pointers and is second on the team with 28 steals and 52 assists. King Leads UH with 6.5 rebounds per game and is tied with Karaitiana with 28 steals. In conference games, King has come on strong to lead UH with 12.4 points and 7.0 rebounds per game; 24 assists, 14 steals and 63 rebounds.
Who: Hawai’i (15-7, 7-2 Big West) vs. UC Riverside (15-8, 6-3 Big West)
When: Thursday, February 12, 2015 at 7:00 pm
Where: SRC Arena (2,750)
Live Audio/Video/Stats: http://www.gohighlanders.com
Coaches: Hawai’i head coach Laura Beeman is in her third season and has led UH to back-to-back WNIT appearances. She has a 49-35 record at Hawai’i after recording a 390-110 record at the junior college level with Mt. San Antonio. UC Riverside’s John Margaritis is in his 11th season at UCR and has a 144-161 record. Overall in 16 years as a head coach, Margaritis has a 259-243 record.
Series History: Hawai’i is 6-0 against the Highlanders all-time. Earlier this season, UH defeated UCR in their conference home opener at the Stan Sheriff Center, 69-58. Destiny King led UH with a career-high 17 points while Ashleigh Karaitiana added 15 and Shawna-Lei Kuehu chipped in 11. UCR was led by Brittany Crain’s 18 points.
Who: Hawai’i (15-7, 7-2 Big West) vs. Cal State Fullerton(9-12, 3-5 Big West)
When: Saturday, February 14, 2015 at 6:00 pm
Where: Titan Gym (4,000)
Live Audio/Video/Stats: http://www.fullertontitans.com
Coaches: Hawai’i head coach Laura Beeman is in her third season and has led UH to back-to-back WNIT appearances. She has a 49-35 record at Hawai’i after recording a 390-110 record at the junior college level with Mt. San Antonio. Cal State Fullerton is led by Daron Park who is in his second year with a 21-30 career record.
Series History: Cal State Fullerton has a slight 15-14 edge over Hawai’i. Last season, the two teams split their two-game series with both home teams winning. UH defeated CSF at home on Feb. 15, 65-52, but fell at Titans Gym, 61-42 on Feb. 27.