The HHSAA will implement a 35-second shot clock in its boys and girls basketball games, starting with the 2023-2024 state tournament, with a projected start date of February 2024.

It is the first time a shot clock has been used in HHSAA competition.

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The measure was decided upon during the Hawaii Interscholastic Athletic Directors Association conference on the Big Island earlier in the week, among other changes across a multitude of sports, and swiftly approved by the HHSAA.

“To be quite honest, it was a bit of a surprise,” ‘Iolani boys basketball coach Ryan Hirata said. “It’s something that has been voted on in the ILH and obviously in HIADA for a while now. Each year, it hasn’t gone through. … I was a bit surprised by it but I think it’s definitely a step forward.”

Hirata sees the new rule as an adjustment for everyone involved.

“For every player that’s gonna play at the next level, the shot clock is imminent,” he said. “It’s gonna help them tremendously from a standpoint of strategy and also from a standpoint of knowing how to be efficient both offensively and defensively. You don’t wanna foul at the end of the shot clock with five seconds left on the clock, just like how you wouldn’t towards the end of the quarter unless you have fouls to give.

“I think overall, it’s gonna change the mindset of both the players, the coaches, the fans and also the officials, because that’s also another thing they have to worry about as well, along with whoever’s gonna be controlling the shot clock, because that’s a skill in itself — being able to make judgement calls on if there’s an actual change of possession, if the shot clock changes rather than if there’s no change in possession, the shot clock keeps running.”

Hirata mentioned that multiple high school basketball tournaments on Oahu use a shot clock, including the ‘Iolani Classic and Moanalua’s OIA/ILH Challenge. When it comes to the 2024 state tournament, “I think it’s a long time coming for it. I think it’s gonna be exciting, I think people are gonna understand that it’s gonna add a different element to the game,” he said. “Players, coaches, officials, everybody’s gotta adapt.”