Dennis Agena Clinic
More than 80 basketball students participated in the fast paced intense Agena Clinic at Kawananakoa Gym in Keaukaha on August 25-27. Most students were dead tired after each practice (avg 4-5 Hrs.) with sweat and improved skills and an awareness of what it takes to get to the next level. Dennis Agena is one of Hawaii's elite coaches when it comes to offensive skills. Agena uses various team moving offensive drills that call for good offensive technique as well as timing and teamwork. Dennis admits that he did not invent most of the drills borrowed from camps like the famous Five Star and others. However, some of the drills have evolved or morphed into Dennis' own creative drill. Agena has the talent to see what players from Hawaii need to posses to make it to the next level and he designs his drills to help get the Hawaii players to that skill level. Dennis formed the famous Kalakaua Clinic that has polished great basketball talent like Derrick Low and Shawna Lei-Kuehu and Shaena Lynn Kuehu from Punahou. Majority of the ILH boys and girls basketball players attend his year long clinics every Sunday at Kalani High School. The Kalakaua Clinic has over 1,000 students from ages as young as 10 and all the way up to High School. The Clinic is so much in demand that there is a waiting list just to attend.
Dennis Agena however has opened up the clinic for guests from the Big Island in the past. BIIF Players and Big Islanders that have attended the Kalakaua Clinic at Kalani High School include; Vicky Tagalicod (Hilo High) , Ryan Fukunaga (Hilo High) , Kawehi Correa (Honokaa) and Tracee Fukunaga. The clinic is designed to make each player want to improve. Beginners must attend the beginners class at Kalakaua Gym on Saturdays and each player is grouped with their peers at their skill level. Each Player can only move up if they show improvement and must practice the drills at home. The Clinic at Kalani High School is reserved for the best students of the Clinic. Even at the Kalani clinic they are grouped into different skilled groups based on age, gender and skill.
The Kalakaua clinic has sponsored a girls High School traveling team that has competed at the highest level of competition on the mainland. Several top players from Hawaii have gone with the team for several summers. Dennis Agena has also brought in Gannon Baker who is regarded as the best dribbling and ball handling instructor in the United States. For the last two summers Baker has had around 80 to 100 students attend the two day event. Many of the Hilo High School Girls Basketball players have attended the Baker Clinic on Oahu for the last two summers. Dennis was pleased with the clinic at Keauakaha that he is already making plans to come back next year. Gary Cooper and the Hilo High Coaching Staff worked hard in putting the clinic together for the community as many players from Hilo and Kona came out in support for such an event. Many current basketball gurus, curious about why Agena is successful came out to watch the clinic including; Jimmy Yagi (Former UHH Head Coach), Bill O'Rear (former UHH Guard, Vulcan camp lead clinician), Tad Saito (Piopio Bears), Bruce Ferreira (former high school standout, Waiakea JV coach), Bobbie Awa (HHSAA State champion coach, Konawaena HS), Randy Apele (Hawaii Warriors), Dominic Pacheco (Kamehameha HS coach), Mark Saito (Pio Pio Bears, Hoops coach), Shannon Poe (Kealakehe HS coach), Gavian Demello (Keaau HS coach), Brian Suezaki (former Konawaena HS coach), Leroy Sims (Hilo High athletic director, BIIF championship coach), Steve Fukunaga (former Keaau HS coach), and Kalani Silva (Kamehameha HS coach).