Apele Plays One More Game As Warriors Fall to Baldwin

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HONOLULU – The toughest game to play in any state tournament is the third place game. It features two teams who didn’t have enough to make it to championship night and haven’t gotten over the disappointment of falling short of their ultimate goal.

For the Warriors of Kamehameha-Hawaii, playing in the 3 p.m. third place game was the culmination of many disappointing circumstances. First, there was illness that ravaged through the team. Then, there was Lanaki Apele’s dislocated lelft elbow in the second quarter of Friday’s semifinal. On top of all of that, the Warriors lost a fourth quarter lead to the eventual state-runner up, Kahuku.

But, before the Warriors 53-49 loss against Baldwin, the one guy you expected to be down and disappointed was actually smiling, playing around with a basketball, and joking around with his teamamates.

Lanaki Apele was that guy.

Just half a day after getting knocked out at a nearby hospital so doctors could pop back in his dislocated left elbow, Apele was having fun with his basketball family, and in a really touching moment, Lanaki would indeed have one more game to play on a high school basketball floor.


Apele got the start and after Kamehameha-Hawaii was allowed to win the tip, Kekoa Turner dribbled the ball for a few seconds before finding Apele, with his sling off and his arm bent and bandaged up, who put up a shot off of the glass to get a basket. After Baldwin’s Gabriel Ross scored an uncontested basket, Apele came out of the game, shaking hands with the Baldwin bench, as the teams and fans all applauded him.

After those emotional first thirty seconds of the game, the Warriors opened with an early 11 point advantage in the second quarter, leading 19-8, after going on an 11-0 run spanning over four minutes of game action.

Baldwin responded soon after that run, putting up an 11-0 run of their own over the next 3:30 of the second quarter. Baldwin’s Tevarua Eldridge was a key component of that run, scoring the final 7 points of that run, including a trey and a pair of jumpers, helping to push Baldwin right back within two, 23-21, at halftime.

After a Shaun Kagawa field goal to start the third quarter, Baldwin put together another run,  this time scoring 9 consecutive points over the next 2 minutes, to take a 30-25 lead over the Warriors, the Bears’ first lead of the game. That was followed by an 8-0 Warrior run over the next 3 and a half minutes, paced by Kaeo Alapai’s 4 points in that stretch, to give the lead back to Kamehameha-Hawaii, 33-30.


The Warriors struggled to hit shots down the stretch, leading to 8-for-27 field goal shooting in the second half, while Baldwin rarely missed in the fourth quarter. The Bears got three pointers from freshman Kody Takushi and senior Gabriel Ross, surging them to the 4 point victory.

Kamehameha-Hawaii 14 9 10 16 – 49

Baldwin 8 13 11 21 – 53



Kamehameha-Hawaii – 16-49 FG (32.7%), 2-10 3PT (20.0%), 15-20 FT (75.0%)

Baldwin – 21-45 FG (46.7%), 4-8 3PT (50.0%), 7-15 FT (46.7%)

LEADING SCORERS: Kamehameha-Hawaii – Kaeo Alapai 17, Shaun Kagawa 10, Jacob Kackley 9, Kamana’o Aiu 5, Keoni Wong 2, Lanaki Apele 2, La’akea Manliguis 2, Quenten Anastacio 2. Baldwin – Gabriel Ross 11, Tevarua Eldridge 11, Kody Takushi 8, Pasoni Tasini 7, Bradley Bowlin 6, Ryan Garces 4, Jeremiah Badillo 2, Semisi Malafu 2, Michael Ahn 2.

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