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April 2007

Pacific Northwest News

Starr Rodenhurst Goes to National Hoop Shoot Competition!

By Mike Byers

Nine-year old Starr Rodenhurst has earned her way to the National Hoop Shoot competition to be held in Springfield, Massachusetts on  April 21, 2007. 

Starr Rodenhurst after qualifying for Nationals, with parents Inoa and Edith.
Photo by Julie Rodenhurst

One could say that her journey began when she and her parents and grandparents moved from Hawai`i to Silverdale, Washington.  Starr was athletic and competitive from an early age and now at age 9, she is on her way to Nationals to represent Washington State at the Hoop Shoot competition for her age group.

Starr was born in Kapiolani Hospital on O`ahu to the proud parents of Inoa and Edith Rodenhurst. Edith graduated from Campbell High and Inoa from Damien. Starr’s grandmother Julie Rodenhurst grew up on Molokai and graduated from Molokai High School in 1976. Her grandfather, Rodney Rodenhurst is from Kāne`ohe and a ’76 graduate of Kamehameha School. He coached Silverdale’s outrigger canoe club, Hui Heihei Wa’a to a bronze medal at the World’s IVF Sprints in 2002 in Bora Bora and continued on as coach to the present time, sending teams to the 2004 World Sprints in Hilo and to New Zealand in 2006.

Starr has also paddled canoe since the age of 4 and began her hoop shoot venture at Esquire Hills Elementary School in Silverdale. She continued in the competition held at Ridgetop Jr. High and won, allowing her to advance to the District Tournament in Hoquim where she won in double overtime after sinking 4 out of 5 baskets.  Starr then moved on to the State Tournament in Bellevue where she made 18 out of 25 shoots, earning her way to the North West Regional Tournament in Portland, Oregon.

It was in Portland that Starr faced off with other winners from Alaska, Idaho and Oregon and truly shone, making 20 out of 25 shoots and paving her way to the Nationals in April.  We wish her luck!

Mike Byers was born and raised in Hawai`i and paddles for Hui Heihei Wa `a in Silverdale , Washington . He practiced law for 30 years, is now retired and enjoys spending time with his 5 grandchildren.

Low and Behold!

`Iolani's Low Helps WSU To Historical Season

By Duane Shimogawa

The hair. The tattoos. The humble attitude. They're all distinctive characteristics of former `Iolani School hoops star Derrick Low. They're also what makes him a true Hawaiian.

Derrick Low
Photo from wsu.edu

Despite going through tough injuries in his first two seasons, Low managed to lead the Washington State University men's basketball team to historic levels. Low, considered by many as the best prep basketball player to ever come out of Hawai`i, let the entire nation know what Hawai`i residents knew throughout his illustrious high school career.

This year, Low paced the Cougs to the their best season since 1941, as that team made it all the way to the NCAA championship game, but lost in the final. The 26-8 mark they finished up with this year, tied them with the 1941 squad.

Vanderbilt cut short the magical season for Low and Cougs in the second round of the NCAA tournament. But throughout the game, WSU showed why it not only belonged in the tournament, but also as a high seed they picked up with its dominant performance during the regular season.

The 78-74 double-overtime loss may have ended WSU's quest for a spot in the Sweet 16, but it didn't take anything away from a one of its greatest seasons ever. And Hawai`i's Low led the charge, with his amazing all-around play which is often compared to former University of Hawai`i hoops star Alika Smith, who was also a gigantic prep star in the 50th State.

But Low has taken not only WSU to another level, he's also carrying the torch for Hawai`i basketball fans, who really didn't have anyone or any team to root for this season at the collegiate level.

Low, who will have another year to showcase his talents before heading off to a pro career somewhere in the world, represented Hawai`i extremely well. His demeanor both on and off the court was the same. There were no surprises, and even when the big networks like ESPN and Fox Sports Net came calling to do stories on the All-PAC-10 performer, he remained humble and committed to his team-first attitude.

Even the story ESPN did on Low wasn't about his great play on the court; it was patterned after his nifty, sacred artwork on his left leg. Still, even if he made the national spotlight, he always managed to remind everyone watching about his strong roots in Hawai`i.

What makes Low's story even sweeter is the fact that he is the very first in his family to be accepted into college. His father, Ken, is a single-parent, who had to struggle to get Low through `Iolani School. But as his son's stock rose with his signing to play with WSU and the media attention became larger than life, Ken stayed as humble as his son.

Ken was instrumental for keeping things in perspective for Derrick, who picked up his father's traits from the start. So I guess you don't have to look further than his father for the humble, positive attitude he displays on and off the hardwood.

We're lucky we still have a season left to enjoy his talents. Now that WSU and the rest of the nation know what we already knew about Low, there's still some unfinished business left for the three-time state player of the year. His last-second heroics in the Vanderbilt game was just a preview of what we can expect next season. To top it all off, it'll be another chance for him to showcase not only himself, but our State as well.

Duane Shimogawa was the sports editor for the Garden Island newspaper on Kaua`i before moving to Yakima, Washington where he is a news reporter for KNDO-TV.

 

Hawai`i-Born Actor in Rock Opera

Seattle Resident in Where Elephants Weep

By NWHIT Staff

Marc delaCruz who was born in Hilo and grew up in Seattle, has the lead role of Sam in Where Elephants Weep, a Cambodian rock opera and the first of its kind every produced. The creator, Cambodian composer Him Sophy was inspired by the rock band on stage of a Broadway show and returned to Phnom Penh to write a musical that combines the electric guitar, drums and keyboard with classical Cambodian instruments such as the chapei, a long-necked lute. The first of its kind, the opera will preview in Lowell , Massachusetts because of the large Cambodian community there. The world premier will be held later in Cambodia.

DelaCruz has been in plays and musicals around Puget Sound, most recently in Cats at theVillage Theater in Issaquah and Everett and My Fair Lady at the Fifth Avenue Theater in Seattle. He was in the original production of Making Tracks, a musical about the Asian-American experience that premiered in Washington and toured in Asia. He performed in the on-going and popular Asian-American series Sex in Seattle and had the lead role in The Fantastiks at the Northwest Asian-American Theater.

Marc is a graduate of the University of Washington and is currently based in New York City. He just finished performing in High School Musical and Jesus Christ, Superstar on the East Coast.

For more information about Where Elephants Weep, go to www.cambodianlivingarts.org.

 

Ralph Steele & Everett Explosion Basketball

 

Hawai`i resident Ralph Steele, #6 of the Everett Explosion Basketball Team, takes a shot in a recent exhibition game against the Snohomish County All Stars. Ralph and his girlfriend reside in Kalihi during the off season and are fans of the NW Hawai`i Times.

The Everett Explosion is a professional basketball team in the International Basketball leangue (IBL).

The team photographer Steve Kajihiro is also from Hawai`i and a graduate of `Aiea HS.

 

Photo by Steve Kajihiro

 

Da Pidgin Connekshun:

Eh, Lu`au Time! Naleidem Waiteen fo U

by Lonnie Wiig

Nalei Halemano (Waianae Hi 2006, Pacific Univ. 2010) luvz Hawai’i culcha an hula. Nalei, wan hula instucta fo da Pacific University Lu’au, wen invite us guyz da oddah eevneen fo spock da Kahiko an da Freshmanz Lu’au hula practees. Een da Kahiko, had 40 wahine danceen same time. Wen 80 hanz wen slap da floah loud, soun’ mean but!

Naleidem wuz tryeen fo axplain dat da “Kualoloa Kea’au eez wan Kahiko hula weet da ipuheke about how Hi’iaka came upset weet Pele cuz Pele wen broke her promise an burn da Ohi’alehua Valley an Hi’iaka’s kumu hula wen maké een da faiya.” Us guyz wuz teenkeen, wow, eef wen hang weet Naleidem fo wan week, problee wude add about 100 hula-an-Hawai’i-relateed wurz tu aoah vocabularee.

Na Haumana O Hawai’i (NHOH) goeen sponsa da 47 th Pacific University Lu’au on Saturday, April 14, 2007. Da teem eez “Ke Kaila O Na’Aina,” een noddah wurz "Island Style." Afta 4:30 can mea ai da kalua peeg ladat an den da show doaz goeen opeen 5:30. (Eh, mo bettah go buy da teekeetz qweek but, cuz goeen get uku paila peepoz!) Da show goeen staht seex turtee, an awmos fo shua u goeen weesh da buggah no pau.

Hawai’i studenz make up 20 pahcent ov da student body at Pacific University een Forest Grove. (How many oddah skoolz down da mainlan can say dat?) U teenk about eet, da Lu’au jalai flyeen home, but da treep mo close, fass an cheap. Even sum parentz goeen come down from Hawai’i fo voluntia, make lei an help fo decorate. Goeen get da Hawaiian General Store, too.

Students at pacific University in Forest Grove, Oregon practice the wahine kahiko for the April 14th lu`au.
Photo by Nalei Halemano

Reserve teekeetz runneen $22 fo mea ai an show, oa $16 da show ony. General admeeshun (bleacha seateen) $18 oa $12. (Get kupuna an keiki deescount.) Maybe goeen sell out, so mo betta o-dah da teekeetz nao on da Lu’au website, www.pacificu.edu/studentlife/luau/.

Us guyz wuz axeen Naleidem why dey hana so hahd on da Lu’au. Nalei’s cuzzeen, Aubrey Mera, from Nanakuli tell: “I love to dance. I love where I come from. And I love to share that with others.” Nalei wen tell: “We should take pride in the culture but be humble while doing it.”

Wan nuddah eentreesteen teeng: Get cuppla full-on haole gurlz from da mainlan dat wen join da Hawai’i Club an wen learn fo dance da tradeeshanal hula.

Anyhow, NHOH goeen poot on wan gude show. Spock u den.

This is Lonnie Wiig’s last and final Pidgin Connekshun column. Lonnie hails from Honolulu and graduated from Punahou (1959). He lives in Oregon where he works as a Spanish, Japanese and ESL teacher. Lonnie can be reached at lw@cre8communic8.com.

Mahalo Lonnie for all your energy and hard work. We will miss you and Da Pidgin Connekshun! ~~RdC

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