Division I Transfer Takes CUH Volleyball to Top Ranks in the Country


Meredith Robinson

Star outside hitter Brooklen Pe’a leads the team in kills, and is ninth in kills per set for the PacWest Conference.

Junior Brooklen Pe’a has powered Chaminade to new heights. For the first time in 16 years, women’s volleyball has claimed a spot in the NCAA Division II Top 25.

Pe’a is a Division I transfer from the University of Youngstown State in Ohio for her first two seasons in collegiate women’s volleyball. Being a part of a winning culture and connecting to family is one of the reasons she has transferred to Chaminade. Her father’s side lives in Waianae, and was excited for the opportunity to finally reunite with her family members in Hawaii.

“I really liked the culture coach Kahala has built here, and I really wanted to be a part of it,” said Pe’a, a Woods Cross, Utah native. “Overall, I just like the environment here, and I am finally able to be more connected to my family here in Hawaii.”

Pe’a is the leading hitter of a Silverswords squad that is 15-3 overall, 5-1 in PacWest Conference play and ranked 24th in the country. CUH just returned home from a four-match road trip on the mainland where the team dropped just one set. Starting Thursday, the Swords will be playing five straight matches in McCabe Gym.

Head coach Kahala Kabalis Hoke has seen tremendous leadership throughout the season from Pe’a. With her competitive edge to contribute in every play whether its on the bench or on the floor, that energy has turned over to some key wins to be among the top 25 teams in NCAA Division II.

Kicking off this year, CUH played in the Hawaii-Alaska Challenge at McCabe Gym. This was a four-match tournament against University of Alaska and Alaska Anchorage. The 6-foot right-side hitter would end up having 62 kills on 170 swings during the tournament. Pe’a also started all 19 sets for Chaminade, as the matches between each school was concluded within a little over 30 hour time frame.

The next tournament Chaminade entered was in Bellingham, Washington, where it was hosted by 14th ranked Western Washington. They would go on and win three of the four matches at the Western Washington Invitational, which included a impressive victory against 11th ranked Metropolitan State University of Denver in a five-set thriller.

“I think her will to be there for her teammates has really fired up the team to be playing at a high level every game,” said Kabalis Hoke, the first CUH women’s volleyball head coach to record back-to-back 20 win seasons in 2018 and 2019 and took the program to its first ever postseason berth in 2018. “She has been very vocal and supportive to her teammates, and that has really got us going.”

Pe’a is one of eight Division I transfers on the team, as she is currently ninth in the conference in kills per set with 3.1. She is also eighth in the conference in points per set with 3.65.

The Utah native had an incredible start to her Chaminade career last year against interisland rival Hawai‘i Pacific. On March 20, she would finish the match with a season-high 23 kills versus HPU. Pe’a was named Pacific West Conference Hawai‘i Pod Team and Academic All-PacWest, finishing fourth in all of the PacWest in kills per set with 3.32.

She is the team leader in kills with 186 and has started all but two matches for Chaminade due to an ankle injury she suffered in a match against Montana State Billings.

Pe’a, before committing to play collegiate volleyball has tried different sports back in high school. The 2018 Bountiful High School student-athlete participated in sports like softball, basketball, and soccer for a brief amount of time. Then, she moved to San Diego, California, for her junior and senior years in high school. There she played club volleyball in her hopes to play collegiate volleyball.

The star outside hitter for CUH also has her younger twin sister Kaybrie on this year’s team. The two have been teammates since they first started playing sports in grade school. They are both transfers from Youngstown State University, and Pe’a shared her thoughts about how grateful she is for having her twin sister as a teammate throughout the years.

“I’m always grateful that me and her have been able to go through college with her, especially play together as teammates at the next level,” said Brooklen Pe’a, one of five girls in her family. “Being able to stay together as teammates at the collegiate level has been a true blessing. At the end of the day, she’s my biggest competitor and biggest supporter all at the same time, and I’m truly grateful to have her as my sister.”

After graduating from Chaminade, Pe’a would like to enter graduate school to study in financing.

Chaminade will play Concordia Thursday at McCabe Gym at 7 p.m. Since Hawaii is still currently under the no-fan attendance policy, you can watch the livestream for free on Stretch Live.com.