Basketball: Vulcans fall short at Fresno Pacific, 82-78

The UH-Hilo men’s basketball team had a chance to tie Fresno Pacific with 10 seconds left but couldn’t convert and fell in an 82-78 loss Saturday in Fresno, Calif., to conclude a winless two-game road trip.

Sasha Vuksanovic scored to cut the Sunbirds’ lead to 80-78 with 22 seconds left. After a missed shot, UHH got the rebound with 10 seconds left.


Kupaa Harrison drove the lane, missed and Fresno Pacific grabbed the rebound and hit two free throws to close the game.

Vuksanovic scored 23 points, Harrison had 22 and seven rebounds, Damani Whitlock had 13 points, and Kaleb Gilmore added 10 points off the bench for the Vulcans (7-8, 5-6 PacWest).

Spencer Heimerdinger scored 18 points while Adrian Antunez and Aamondae Coleman added 17 each, and Raine McKeython had 12 points for the Sunbirds (6-11, 4-7), who shot 48 percent from the field, including 6 of 22 from 3-point range.

The Sunbirds jumped out to a 12-3 lead. Then Gilmore gave the Vuls a boost by scoring on three consecutive possessions to cut the lead to 24-22.

Harrison drew a foul on a 3-point attempt right before halftime. He drained all three free throws to give the Vulcans a 44-41 lead at the break.

Fresno Pacific opened with a 7-0 run to start the third quarter and never lost the lead again.

UHH next hosts Concordia at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at its gym.


FPU 74, UHH 46: The Vulcans couldn’t hit shots (22 percent from the field), couldn’t make stops against the Sunbirds (54 percent from the floor) and couldn’t stop Cassie Pisik, who scored 18 points on 8 of 12 shooting.

Allie Navarette scored 14 points on 4 of 14 shooting, and Kim Schmelz added 12 points on 2 of 9 shooting for the Vulcans (5-10, 4-7), who have lost two straight.

Mikayla Tablit added eight points for the Vuls, who made 2 of 14 from beyond the arc. Tablit and Mandi Kawaha each made a 3-pointer.


UHH was one game behind FPU (9-8, 6-5) in the standings. Earlier, the Vuls defeated the Sunbirds 63-51.

The Vuls converted 4 of 26 in the first half and trailed 42-16 at the break. The Sunbirds outrebounded them 43-31.

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