After losing to Hana in straight sets Friday night, the Farmer volleyball girls turned around on Saturday to extinguish the Dragon’s fire. It was Hana’s first regular season loss in their last nine matches.
Led by senior Taylor Keliihoomalu with 12 kills, Molokai defeated Hana in four sets Saturday afternoon 26-24, 19-25, 25-20 and 26-24.
“Basically our defense was much better,” Farmer coach Mahealani Rawlins told The Maui News.
The night before, the Farmers had a hard time digging out the balls and fell to Hana 25-19, 25-19 and 25-23.
But Saturday was a different story. Every Hana attack was countered swiftly. The team’s other Taylor, Taylor Tamanaha, also a senior, had a strong match and helped keep the pressure on the Dragons.
The first set on Saturday was the closest. The two teams traded the lead back and forth before Shania Mollena-Lopez was able to serve out to win the game 26-24.
In the other two sets won by Molokai, the Farmers were able to jump out to quick leads and hold on. In set three, the Farmers took a 16-6 lead and held on despite a strong comeback to win 25-20.
The Farmers carried their momentum into the fourth set, cruising to an 8-0 lead. Hana came back, slowly chipping away at the Molokai lead until making a kill to tie the game at 24. After a timeout, the Farmers went on to win the next two points and the match.
With the win, Molokai extends its season record to 6-2 while Hana drops to 6-1, one game behind Seabury Hall in the Maui Interscholastic League Division II standings. Undefeated Seabury beat Molokai in four sets on Sept. 4.
A more seasoned Farmer team can seek redemption Oct. 11 when they play Seabury again at Erdman Athletic Center on Maui.