Longtime University of Hawaii at Hilo men’s golf coach Earl Tamiya knows you have to be both good and lucky to win championships.
And with that said, he believes his young team will need to be both when the Vulcans host the seventh annual Dennis Rose Intercollegiate Tournament on Monday and Tuesday at the Waikoloa Beach Resorts Beach and Kings’ Course.
In the nine-team men’s tournament, the Vulcans are the defending champions and riding an impressive two tournament win streak, including rallying from 10 shots back on the final day to claim the Sonoma State Invitational last week in California.
Sophomore Jamie Hall pocketed the individual crown as he and his teammates scorched the Santa Rosa Country Club course for a tourney-low 278 to win the team title.
Hall, from Seattle, won his third career title with the strong performance at the Sonoma State Invitational. He shot 71-69-70 for a 6-under-par 210 total, then he edged two opponents in a three-man playoff for the tourney title.
But Hall wasn’t the only Vulcan to play well in the final round. Teammate Corey Kozuma had a sizzling 5-under 67 and tied for fifth place at 212.
UH-Hilo’s Kyten Littel had a 70, Chris Shimomura scored a 71, and sophomore Dalen Yamauchi shot a 74 to round out team scoring. Vulcan Christian Agosto played as an individual and carded a 74.
Tamiya said Cal State East Bay could challenge UH-Hilo for the men’s title at Waikoloa.
“They’re a very good team and did well under tough conditions in the recent Monterrey Bay tournament,” the Vulcans coach said.
Besides UH-Hilo and Cal State East Bay, the other men’s teams in the Dennis Rose field include Brigham Young University-Hawaii, Chaminade, Simon Fraser, Hawaii Pacific, St. Martin’s, Notre Dame de Namur and Montana State University-Billings.
Despite winning two straight tournaments on the mainland, the Vulcans dropped from eighth to 17th in the recent NCAA Division II national golf poll.
In the women’s field at Waikoloa, the Lady Vulcans are joined by Cal State East Bay, Grand Canyon University, HPU, St. Martin’s and St. Mary’s (Texas).
UH-Hilo, under coach Jim DeMello, is ranked No. 13 in the current NCAA Division II women’s poll. The Vulcans recently captured the Western Washington Invitational, winning by six strokes over British Columbia.
The Vulcans carded a tournament low 299 in the final round to finish with a 608 total.
UH-Hilo’s Kacie Harada (73-76—149) placed second, two shots behind individual medalist Casara Hong of British Columbia.
Also competing for the Vulcans were Erika Morihiro (77-75) and Nyssa Aoki (78-74) who tied for fifth place at 152; Kristen Sawada (81-74), tied for 15th at 155; and Shannon Abarra (83-84), tied for 43rd at 167.