Meliame Hala’ufia is one of many Tongans that are playing college basketball in the US. Having playing in her two first years at the College of Southern Idaho, Meliame Hala’ufia is set to join her younger sister Kristie at Azusa Pacific and she talked to us about her time at Southern Idaho and her expectations at Azusa Pacific.
What are you strengths and weaknesses in your game?
Strengths- shots in the paint, rebounds, free throws. Weaknesses: Staying on my feet on defense, conditioning.
Describe to us your basketball playing style
I guess I would say I'm I true post player, because there’s not too many out there. And my game is mostly in the paint and using the backboard.
You playing in 2002-04 in College of Southern Idaho, describe to us how you performed from an individual and team prospect and if they were above or below your expectations?
At CSI, I thought I performed pretty well, I learned a lot. I learned I needed to be stronger because there were bigger post players then me in the league compared to high school. They were definitely above my expectations. We did a lot of conditioning; I can probably say I was in the best shape ever though two years I was there, it felt great. My team my freshmen year was good, it was sort of a new beginning because it was the coaches first season there too. Our season went all right we just made it to the tournament. But my sophomore year went great we won the league, and the tournament and went to national tournament in Kansas where we got sixth place. IT was a great season.
Playing in junior college, how has that helped you as a basketball player?
I learned a lot mentally and physically. I think it helped me become a better player like being stronger, making good choices and other things.
You redshirted the 2004-05 season, were it some that was planned or were it because of an injury?
I actually didn’t redshirt it was kind of like I took a year off. A coach there recruited me at Cal Baptist and something happen that he was no longer the coach anymore so when I got there it was a new coach. And things just didn’t work out with him. It was more like I told the year off.
Why did you choose Azusa Pacific?
When I came to visit I really liked thei