Kamehameha-Hawaii Claims Division I League Title
The Warriors of Kamehameha-Hawaii took nearly four minutes to find the scoreboard, but once Shaun Kagawa began to get going, so did his team, as the Warriors took home the KTA Super Stores / BIIF Division I Championship Game with a 61-55 win over Hilo High.
Hilo started the game on a 6-0 run through the first 3:39 of the game, thanks to buckets from Rico Loeak and Drew Kell. The Warriors first field goal came with 2:51 to play, when Kagawa completed a fast break when a layup to make the score 6-3. Kagawa didn’t miss again in the quarter, scoring the next seven points to help lead his team to a 15-7 first quarter lead.
After a fairly even second quarter kept the advantage with the Warriors at 29-18 at half, Kagawa got it going again, hitting a pair of threes. But, Hilo wouldn’t go away. Sophomore Jodd Carter got on the scoreboard for the first time in the quarter, hitting a pair of floating baseline runners. Jason Genegabus added six in the quarter as well, and Hilo was within 9, down 48-47 after the third quarter.
The lead was up to 13 not even a minute into the fourth quarter, but that didn’t stop Hilo from making one final push. Drew Kell sank two free throws with 2:07 remaining to cut the deficit to 3 at 56-53. That would be the closest that the Vikings would get to the champion Warriors.
Both teams will play at the Hawaiian Airlines / HHSAA Boys State Basketball Championships next week on Oahu, with Kamehameha-Hawaii getting the opening round bye. The Warriors tested themselves in non-league competition by showing well at the Iolani Classic and the Merv Lopes Tournament. When asked what makes Kamehameha-Hawaii a championship contended, head coach Dominic Pacheco’s was reflective of those early tests. “You look at the OIA, ILH, we’ve seen them all. We’ve played Kahuku twice, we’ve played Punahou, it’s wide open. I think we have a shot, it just depends on who you’ve got on the first night.”
Hilo 7 11 19 18 – 55
Kamehameha-Hawaii 15 14 17 15 – 61
Hilo – 23-55 FG (41.8%), 2-12 3PT (16.7%), 13-17 FT (76-5%)
Kamehameha-Hawaii – 25-50 FG (50.0%), 4-11 3PT (36.4%), 7-17 FT (41.2%)
LEADING SCORERS: Hilo – Drew Kell 13, Jalen Carvalho 11, Jacob Genegabus 9, Jodd Carter 8, Kainoa Kawaha 6, Kamu Patnaude 4, Rico Loeak 4. Kamehameha-Hawaii – Shaun Kagawa 15, Jacob Kackley 13, Kekoa Turner 12, Lanaki Apele 9, Kaeo Alapai 8, Keoni Wong 4.