KS-Hawaii Routs Kohala, Advances to DII Girls Hoops Title Game
The Kamehameha-Hawai`i Warriors will get a chance to defend its Big Island Interscholastic Federation Division II championship Saturday night after a decisive 67-28 Friday over Kohala in the KTA Super Stores / BIIF Girls Basketball Tournament.
Kamehameha-Hawai`i (18-7 overall, 9-3 BIIF), two-time defending state champion and six-time defending league champion, clinched a berth in next week’s Hawaiian Airlines / Hawai`i High School Athletic Association Division II Girls Basketball Championships with the victory.
Kohala (6-6 overall, 6-6 BIIF) put the Warriors on early notice. The Cowgirls, seeded third in the tournament, took an early 8-4 lead after going 3-for-3 from the field to start the game. Brittany Shimono and Tezrah Antonio each hit treys while Naai Solomon-Lewis added a bucket to get the Cowgirls offense going.
Turnovers became the story, however, as Kamehameha-Hawai`i turned up the intensity on its half-court defensive trap. The Warriors forced 16 first quarter turnovers, which allowed for extra offensive opportunities. Caitlyn Poe, sophomore and younger sister of Casey Poe, was one of the players who took advantage, scoring seven points in the first quarter to lead to a 23-12 advantage after the opening period.
Casey Poe took over in the second quarter, forcing turnovers with her length and running out for fast break baskets when her teammates were able to take the ball away from the Cowgirls. The senior scored 12 of her game high 23 points in the second quarter, pushing Kamehameha-Hawai`i to a 44-16 halftime lead.
Poe flirted with a triple-double throughout the afternoon, bringing down 13 rebounds and grabbing seven steals, both game highs. She also tallied three assists and three blocks.
Kohala could never get back in the game as turnovers continued to pile up. The Cowgirls committed 35 turnovers and shot just 22 percent (10-for-45) from the field. Senior Hauoli Sproat-Lancaster, an honorable mention selection last season in West Hawai`i, led the team with 12 points and 12 rebounds.
Kamehameha-Hawai`i got a 15 point, seven rebound contribution from Riana Arima while the younger Casey Poe added 14 points and a pair of treys. The Warriors shot 44 percent (26-for-59) from the floor and grabbed 20 steals.
The Warriors will face Honoka`a in Saturday’s championship game. The Dragons defeated Hawai`i Preparatory Academy 64-29 in the opening semifinal game.The 6:00 p.m. tilt is a rematch from last year’s league and state championship games, both won by Kamehameha-Hawai`i.
Honoka`a, however, has beaten the Warriors twice. On Nov. 22, Honoka`a won 59-31 during the Dragons Girls Basketball Tournament. On Dec. 17, the Dragons pulled out a 42-37 regular season victory, also played in Honoka`a.
Kohala has one last chance to secure a berth in the state tournament. The Cowgirls will face Hawai`i Prep at 4:30 p.m. Saturday in the Division II third place game.
Kohala 12 4 7 5 – 28
Kamehameha-Hawai`i 23 21 17 6 – 67