When you can’t miss, you can’t lose.
Allie Navarette scored 25 points with seven rebounds, Mandi Kawaha scored 20 points while missing only two shots Monday and UH-Hilo’s women’s basketball team was true from the free-throw line and 3-point range in beating Holy Names 79-58 at Afook-Chinen Civic Auditorium.
Leading from the start – Navarette hit a 3-pointer 10 seconds in to spur a 10-2 run – the Vulcans (6-11,5-8 Pacific West Conference) ended a three-game losing streak.
Navarette’s 3-pointer was contagious. UHH shot 8 of 16 from long range, led by Kawaha. The sophomore was 7 of 9 from the floor, making all four of her 3-pointers, adding nine rebounds and four assists.
Still on the outside looking in the PacWest playoff race, the Vuls won one they had to against the last-place Hawks (1-15, 1-11), who lost their fifth in a row.
Kim Schmelz had 12 points for UH Hilo.
Freshman Amaya Ervin had a career-high 13 points to lead the Hawks, and Gernijah Martin added 12 points and eight boards. But the Hawks hit just 30 percent of their shots and converted only 4 of 23 three-point attempts.
UHH shot 15 of 16 from the free-throw line.
The Vuls led 37-27 at halftime, but it got interesting at times in the third quarter.
Holy Names scored the first basket of the third quarter and later in the period cut the Vulcan lead to five points—twice. Both times (46-41 and 48-43) came via baskets from Monica Valenzuela. UHH answered with baskets from Navarette and a 3-pointer from Sara Shimizu to put the count at 53-43 at the end of the quarter.
In the fourth, the Hawks were never able to cut the lead to single digits as the Vulcans scored 26 points.