All in the family: Akana follows in family’s footsteps after Wahine debut


A hometown girl made her hometown debut for the Rainbow Wahine volleyball team last week, fulfilling a lifelong dream in the process.

Braelyn Akana took the court first time at the Stan Sheriff Center when the ‘Bows took on Sacramento State a few days ago in what turned out to be a night she’ll never forget. 

“It was just super exciting,” Akana said. “Playing in front of the home crowd is super great.” 

The former Kamehameha-Kapalama standout helped the Warriors win three league championships (2016, ‘17, ‘18) and a pair of state championships (2015, ‘17), amassing a 133-22 record in the process. 

But playing for the University of Hawaii? It’s Akana’s destiny.

Her mother, Joselyn, was an outside hitter for the Wahine from 1993-1996 and her father, Brandyn, was an assistant coach for the Warrior basketball team. Her uncle, Jarinn, also played for the Warriors from 1993-94 and she has a cousin, Jessiya Villa, currently on the Warriors basketball team.

“It was also great to look up and see my family members and friends,” she said. 

Additionally, Akana dons the No. 14 jersey for Hawaii, the same number her mother wore as a player.

“I love that I’m able to wear No. 14. It’s such a legacy,” Akana said. “I’m super privileged to be wearing that number.”

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