Vulcan Athletics Weekend Recap

Vulcan volleyball, soccer, and cross country sport busy weekend

Editor-in-Chief, Peter Holden Chao
Photo Courtesy of UH Hilo Athletics

Vulcan Women's soccer players embrace by the goal

Vulcan Volleyball returned home Sept. 28 for their first of six consecutive home games facing off against the Academy of Art University Urban Knights. The Vulcans entered the match second in PacWest standings after coming off a 3-1 road trip to Southern California last week. The Urban Knights entered the match without a win on the season. They certainly did not play like it.

In what was a closer match than anticipated, the Vulcans downed the Urban Knights in four games, 25-19, 21-25, 27-25, 25-16. “We just focus on our game and what we can do as a team. Sometimes when we get really low it’s that defensive play that hypes everyone up,” said senior libero Mina Grant. “It’s a momentum builder. When Tori came in and got that stuff block she was super intense. That fired us up.”

“We’re going to protect this house, we’re not going down on the six game home streak,” said sophomore Bria Beale. “Tonight we made it out, but we’re going to do much better.” The Vulcans play again Mon. Oct. 1 the UH Hilo Gymnasium at 7 p.m.

Vulcan Men’s Soccer played a non-conference match against the Chaminade Silverswords Sept. 29 at Kamehameha School in Keaau. Last week the Vulcans played the Silverswords in a PacWest match and were defeated 4-2. In another tough meeting, the teams ended regulation play tied 0-0. It took only 43 seconds of overtime for the Silverswords to score on a cross stricken volley to end the game 1-0.

The Vulcans opened the season defeating No. 24 ranked Western Washington University. Since then they have had no such luck. Losers of now six in a row the Vulcans are looking to change the narrative. “It’s all about coming together, focusing and working hard,” said senior Xahlil McDonald. “This is our first season we’ve all been together, new coach, definitely some steep learning curves. I don’t think any of us are too disheartened to keep fighting.” The Vulcans will have another chance to end the streak in San Francisco as they take on Academy of Art University on Thurs. Oct. 6.

Vulcan Women’s Soccer also played a non-conference match against the Silverswords but to a much different result. The Vulcans entered the game having won two of their last three. A first half corner kick from Tiera Arakawa sailed over the scrum and was headed in by Leighana Weaver for the goal. A second half shot off of a free kick ricocheted off multiple players in front of the goalie before Arakawa put it in the net, paving the course for another win.

Arakawa moved into eighth place on the UH Hilo all-time scoring list with her tenth career goal. “I didn’t expect it, I don’t know how to describe it,” said the humble senior. “It is my legacy. It’s an honor to have that eighth position.” The Vulcans look to continue to roll. Their next game is Oct. 2 against St. Martin’s University in Washington.

Vulcan Cross Country hosted their own invitational at the Grand Naniloa Banyan Golf Course on Sept. 29. With Chaminade University and Hawaiʻi Pacific University in attendance the Vulcans had four runners finish in the top ten. Freshman Olivia Jarvis posted a time of 24:51 to take the third overall position, while senior Meghan Langbehn finished with a time of 26:35 for ninth.

An all freshman team with the exception of Langbehn, she told Ke Kalahea, “I’m happy to see them thrive now and excited for their future success because of their intuition and support. The girls on this team are so motivated.” Vulcan Cross Country continues running Oct. 6 in the Hawaiʻi Pacific Invitational.