Kahuku, Mililani advance to Division I quarterfinals
• Photo gallery: Hawaiian Airlines Boys Basketball State Championships
By Leila Wai
Advertiser Staff Writer
The Kahuku boys basketball team made up a 17-point second-quarter deficit and nearly lost a double-digit lead of its own to advance to the quarterfinals of the state tournament.
Kahuku defeated Waiakea, 61-56, last night in the Hawaiian Airlines Division I State Championships at Radford's Jim Alegre Gymnasium.
Kahuku (14-4) meets fourth-seeded Lahainaluna (12-2), the Maui Interscholastic League champion, today at 5 p.m. at Radford. Mililani (13-4), which beat Farrington, 63-51 last night, plays top-seeded 'Iolani (12-2) of the Interscholastic League of Honolulu in the other quarterfinal at 7 p.m.
"Our game plan was to go inside, get everything inside and get some scoring and then we could go back out, but we weren't attacking the middle," Kahuku coach Hiram Akina said. "We just couldn't get anything going (in the beginning)."
The Red Raiders, the O'ahu Interscholastic Association runner-up, had a decided height advantage. The Warriors have two players 6 feet or taller, while 11 Kahuku players are at least that height. But Waiakea's 5-foot-2 junior guard Cameron Ita scored the first five points to start an 11-0 run.
"I think we were trying to press too much, trying to make things happen," Akina said. "They played a nice, soft zone and spread us out. They played good. I was impressed."
Waiakea (10-5), the Big Island Interscholastic Federation runner-up, extended its lead to 26-9 with eight straight points by junior forward Isaak Janado in the second quarter. But the Red Raiders bounced back, and a steal and a layup by junior forward Shairone Thompson in the closing seconds of the half closed Kahuku's deficit to 33-32.
"Not just because of our height, but we wanted to establish our big guys," Akina said. "Get them going, you know. I didn't want them to just be a part of the team and watch everyone else shoot. That was our game plan, and it worked out, but starting in the second quarter. In the first quarter, (Waiakea) did everything right."
Kahuku took its first lead of the game at 35-33 on a 3-pointer by senior guard Nehoa Akina, who later made one of two free throws on a technical foul called on Waiakea coach Paul Lee to give the Red Raiders their largest lead of the game, 46-35, with 4:55 left in the third quarter.
Back came Waiakea, which closed to 54-53 with 3:03 to play on a layup by senior forward Chris Mattos following a steal at half court. Kahuku responded with back-to-back baskets by Thompson to put the Red Raiders back in control.
Akina finished with a game-high 23 points, and the 6-foot-4 Thompson added 18 points and 12 rebounds.
Senior guard Matt Libao scored 16 points and Janado added 15 for the Warriors.
WAIAKEA (10-5) 18 15 7 16—56
KAHUKU 7 25 16 13—61
WAIAKEA—Isaak Janado 15, Matt Libao 16, Cameron Ita 5, Chris Mattos 9, Clayton Morante 2, Joey Pacheco 0, Keoni Chiquita 2, Brandon Libao 7. Totals 19 15-24 56.
KAHUKU—Mua Malufau 2, Sage Kaka 0, Nehoa Akina 23, Jackson Kaka 9, Shairone Thompson 18, Michael Tyau 0, Kawehena Johnson 0, Samala Afalava 7, Hans Brown 2, Wonka Beatty 0, KJ Uluave 0, Mason Golden 0. Totals 19 17-24 61.
3-point goals — Waiakea 3 (Janado 2, Ita). Kahuku 6 (Akina 4, Afalava 2).
MILILANI 63, FARRINGTON 51
Mililani rode a 21-9 first-quarter lead to a comfortable victory over Farrington in a showdown between the fourth- and fifth-place teams in the O'ahu Interscholastic Association.
Mililani (13-4), which finished fourth in the OIA, plays top-seeded 'Iolani in one quarterfinal game tonight at Radford at 7.
The Trojans led by as much as 52-32 with 1:38 left in the third quarter after junior forward Trenton Mckinney sank one of two free throws.
The Governors closed the deficit to 10 points on three occasions, the last on a short jumper by sophomore guard Jeffrey Madarang with 1:24 left in the game to make it 56-46.
Junior forward Robert Griffin scored a game-high 17 and junior forward Hassan Richardson added 11 for the Trojans.
Junior forward Lancelot Williams had a team-high 15 points and 15 rebounds, and senior guard Jayfrey Damo contributed 14 points for the Governors (5-12).
FARRINGTON (5-12) 9 15 10 17—51
MILILANI (12-4) 21 19 12 11—63
FARRINGTON—Gregie Burgos 4, Jayfrey Damo 14, Jeffrey Madarang 4, Lancelot Williams 15, Ranold Williams 8, Chadey Collazo 0, Paul Solomon 2, Bernard DeLeon 0, Joel Lanzadras 2, Justin Vele 0, Michael Kelman 2, Viane Vaina 0. Totals 18 11-23 51.
MILILANI—Brandon Fujinaga 6, Reginald Griffin 17, Joseph McGlamery 5, Hassan Richardson 11, Trenton Mckinney 7, Forrest Garcia 3, Bryson Calma 0, Joshua Lenchanko 0, Nicholas Kunz 5, Edward Ocampo 7, Everett Kahoano 2, Ryan Jacobs 0, Robert Griffin 0, Brady Spiridigliozzi 0, Christian Baltazar 0. Totals 25 9-14 63.
3-point goals — Farrington 4 (Damo 4). Mililani 4 (Re. Griffin, McGlamery, Kunz, Ocampo).