Kohala Cruises Past Pahoa in BIIF DII Boys Semifinal
Kealen Figueroa scored 25 points to lead the second-seeded Kohala Cowboys past Pahoa 56-32 in the Division II semifinals of the KTA Super Stores / BIIF Boys Basketball Tournament Friday night.
Figueroa is known for his ability to create shots for his teammates, but he found shots for himself against the third-seeded Daggers. The junior shot 6-for-11 from the field and 13-for-19 from the free throw line to advance the Cowboys to Saturday night’s championship game against Hawai`i Preparatory Academy, the top seed in the tournament and eighth-ranked team in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser Top 10 poll.
“Sometimes when you’re a passer so much, the opponent is watching for the pass because you’re so much of a passer,” said Don Fernandez, head coach of the Cowboys. “Today, he did a good job of picking his spots.”
Pahoa sharp-shooter Tolby Saito was held to just 15 points on 5-of-10 shooting before fouling out of the game. Saito scored just two points, both from the free throw line, in the second half.
“We just kept the same pressure, and I thought he kinda had to do so much bringing up the ball that it made him a little bit tired,” said Fernandez after the game. “We just kept somebody fresh on him.”
Shawn Ray Ramos added 12 points for the Cowboys.
Kohala faces Hawai`i Prep at 6:00 p.m. Saturday night. Ka Makani survived a late run from Honoka`a to win 70-63.
Hawai`i Prep will be without senior leader Kalan Camero, who suffered an injury early in the fourth quarter when he went to the ground and his head bounced off of the loose basketball on the floor. After initially being taken to the bench, Camero was taken to the hospital.
Pahoa 10 9 5 8 – 32
Kohala 10 19 9 18 – 56