U.H. hoops spring back into action

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The University of Hawaii men's basketball team returns home to host Hawaii Pacific in a rare meeting of cross-town schools on Saturday. Tipoff is set for 7:00 p.m. at the Stan Sheriff Center.

The campuses of the Division I Rainbow Warriors and Division II Sea Warriors are separated by a mere four miles, however the teams have met just once before in the regular season and that happened 25 years ago when HPU defeated UH, 79-69, on Dec. 14 1985.

Now both teams meet in an effort to get back on the winning track. The Rainbow Warriors (5-2) come home after being handed their first two losses of the season on the road. UH fell at Cal Poly, 54-53, on a controversial tip-in at the buzzer on Dec. 1, then gave a valiant effort against No. 21 Brigham Young three days later in Salt Lake City only to fall, 78-57. HPU (3-3) also had lost its last two games, both on the road at Alaska-Anchorage.

UH now returns to the Sheriff Center where they are undefeated in five games this season. Sophomore Vander Joaquim has been strong in the middle for the Rainbow Warriors with UH's first double-double performance of the year (12 points, 12 rebounds) in the loss at BYU. The native of Angola has hauled in 39 rebounds in the last three games during the absence of senior forward Bill Amis.

Following its game against HPU, UH will head to Maui to face Chicago State on Friday, Dec. 17 for its first game on a neighbor island in seven years.

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