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HONOLULU—The Mufi Hannemann Basketball Jamboree returns for its 30th year with a full day’s slate of games at the ‘Iolani School gyms, Monday, February 19. Tip-off for the first games is 9:30 a.m.

Admission is free; donations are welcome.

Eighty-four athletes representing high school girls basketball teams from across the state will be competing. They will be divided into six squads, each skippered by a female high school coach. This year, in deference to the hardships created by the Maui wildfire tragedy, all players from the Valley Isle will be flown to Honolulu compliments of Southwest Airlines.

Mufi Hannemann, Jamboree founder, said, “I’m grateful to Southwest Airlines for all that they’re doing to help Maui during this difficult time. Their sponsorship of these young women is most appreciated.”

A new feature of this year’s event will be a 3-point shooting contest that will spotlight two players from each of the six teams. The contest will be held before the final games in the lower gym.

Among the all-stars participating in the Jamboree are the entire HHSAA all-tournament team led by Most Outstanding Player Mia Frye of Division I state champion ‘Iolani and her teammates Mele Sake and Justice Kekauoha; Lahainaluna’s Lola Donez; Konawaena’s Tavina Harris and Nihoa Dunn; and Rylee Paranada of runner-up Kamehameha-Kapalama. Maryknoll, the newly crowned HHSAA Division II state champion, will be represented by Isabella Arrisgado and Hailey Perez, both of whom were all-tournament selections. Others on this elite squad who will be Jamboree-bound include Anuhea Huihui of Kamehameha-Hawai‘i, Olivia Malafu of Kapa‘a, and the Most Outstanding Player of the DII tournament, Ellana Klemp of second-place Hanalani.

Hannemann said, “These young women represent the best basketball from across our islands. Beginning in 1994, the Jamboree has been an exceptional showcase for girl’s basketball in Hawai‘i for three decades—a testament to the popularity of the sport and to the influence of gender equity in expanding opportunities for our young women. What began as a small step forward has, in the years since, featured just about every all-star high school female player in Hawai‘i at one time or another.

“Beside promoting women’s sports, the Jamboree will give us an opportunity to identify players for Team Aloha. To date, we’ve fielded teams over 15 years that have competed very successfully in NCAA-sanctioned spring tournaments in California and Arizona, where the girls have been able to showcase their talents to college coaches and scouts. This exposure has been invaluable as it’s enabled our talented players to compete against seasoned club teams from the western United States where we’ve won championships or placed second in many of these events.”

Team Aloha alumna have earned recognition and scholarships to the University of Hawai‘i, Brigham Young University, Gonzaga, Utah, Utah State, Southern California, Washington State, Indiana, University of Nevada Las Vegas, San Jose State, Saint Mary’s, University of California-Irvine, and other schools. The current University of Hawai‘i Rainbow Wahine roster includes three Team Aloha members: sisters Lily Wahinekapu and Jodi Lefotu, who prepped at ‘Iolani, and Kelsie Imai from Waiakea on Hawai‘i Island.