Waiakea Survives Sluggish Second Half to Defeat Kea`au
When Shaila Apele gets the ball in position to score, the Waiakea Warriors girls basketball team can be a tough team to face.
Apele scored 19 points, grabbed nine rebounds, and dished out four assists, all team highs, to push Waiakea to a hard-fought 50-41 victory over Kea`au High School Wednesday night.
Kea`au (4-5 overall, 3-3 Big Island Interscholastic Federation) took an early 4-2 lead in the game’s first 90 seconds with a left wing three pointer from sophomore Aina Padasdao, her only points of the game. The Warriors followed that with a 12-0 run that spread out over the next five minutes and 45 seconds, fueled by Cougar turnovers. Kea`au forward Jasmin Segobia scored a basket before the end of the first half to end the over six minute scoring drought for the Cougars, who trailed 14-6 at the end of the first quarter.
Waiakea (8-9 overall, 3-3 BIIF) took control of the game in the second quarter by turning up the pressure on Kea`au, forcing six of the Cougars’ 18 turnovers in the period. Coupled with nine second quarter points from Apele, the Warriors extended a lead that grew as big as 16 with under three minutes to play in the first half.
Kea`au scorer Taylor Pocock was held scoreless through much of the first half, but drained three consecutive shots to get Kea`au within 11 points of Waiakea at halftime.
Waiakea was the sloppier basketball team in the second half, throwing dangerous passes that Kea`au defenders were able to pick off. Waiakea committed ten second quarter turnovers, nine more in the third quarter, and 21 in the game to keep the Cougars in reach. Kea`au used that to start a 7-0 third quarter run over the first four minutes of the second half to cut Waiakea’s lead to 26-22. Apele, however, scored six of her team’s next eight points to help push Waiakea’s lead back out to double digits before the end of the period.
Pocock had a strong second half to keep the Cougars in it. She scored a game high 22 points with 16 coming in the second half. A key contributor was Segobia, who added 13 points and grabbed 13 rebounds before fouling out with under two minutes remaining.
The Cougars cut the lead down to four again in the fourth quarter, but Waiakea decided to space the floor and run a four-corners offense, eating up time and spacing out the opponent’s defense. That decision allowed enough time to salt away to preserve the victory.
Apele, a senior, shot 7-for-11 from the field and 5-for-8 from the field to lead Waiakea. Nicole Antonio, a junior guard, added 10 points on 3-for-9 shooting from the floor.
Kea`au struggled from the free throw line, shooting 7-for-21 (.333) from the charity stripe for the game. The Cougars shot a lower percentage, 30.8, from the field, hitting just 16 of its 52 shot attempts.
Kea`au hosts Kealakehe on Saturday night, while Waiakea hosts undefeated Kohala.
Kea`au 6 9 11 15 – 41
Waiakea 14 12 11 13 – 50
Wednesday’s BIIF girls basketball scores
#5 Konawaena 54, Honoka`a 41
Kamehameha-Hawai`i 66, Laupahoehoe 10
#7 Hilo 74, Pahoa 11
Kohala 77, Ka`u 64
Hawai`i Preparatory Academy 42, Kealakehe 11