Lead, follow or get out of the way. For Kim Lung ’79, there was never any option except the first: Lead.
She was active in student government, including being junior class president. She was even more active in athletics, playing three sports and accumulating 10 varsity letters. The 5-foot-3 Lung captained both the basketball and softball squads as a junior and a senior, the same two years she played varsity volleyball.
Lung graduated with academic honors and even more of the athletic kind: 1979 Senior Athlete of the Year; Most Inspirational Player in both basketball and softball; Honolulu Star Bulletin’s all-state team; and Honolulu Advertiser’s Player of the Year of its inaugural all-state team. Lung also walked off the McKinley High court with a trophy after leading the buff ’n blue to its first state championship in girls basketball, a 44 – 37 victory over University Lab in just the third state tournament held.
Lung had scored a team-high 14 points in Punahou’s 48 – 39 loss to Maryknoll in the 1977 final of the inaugural state tournament. Two years later, she only scored three points, all on free throws, but it was her defense, ball handling and ability to break the Spartans’ press that was credited with the title success.
“She was the one who controlled Punahou all the time,” Kamehameha coach Al Apo said in a 1979 interview. Lung made the all-tournament team both as a sophomore and senior. She continued her basketball career at the University of the Pacific, playing four varsity seasons for the Tigers. Again, she was named Most Inspirational, as a freshman and a senior, and made the NorCal Athletic Conference academic honor roll all four years. Lung still holds UOP’s single-game record for steals with 26 against UC Santa Barbara as a sophomore in 1980. She graduated summa cum laude in 1983.
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