Iolani earns state berth
Even without one of their big guns, the Iolani Raiders have plenty of arsenal.
With Liloa Nobriga on the bench for the first half, Pablo Warner stepped up to help top-ranked Iolani stifle Mid-Pacific 58-47 last night at the Raiders' gym.
Warner scored 11 points, including 7-for-8 shooting at the foul line, and used his quickness and long arms to shut down Mid-Pac's prolific scorer, Marcus Holyfield. The two sophomores battled from end to end, and Holyfield finished with just two points on 1-for-5 shooting.
"The big key was Pablo's defense on Marcus," Iolani coach Mark Mugiishi said. "Because of the way we match up, he usually guards the post, but Mid-Pac uses a big guard."
Iolani, which got 13 points from center Taylor Mounts and another baker's dozen from Ryan Dung, clinched a state-tournament berth. Mounts added a team-high nine rebounds.
The Raiders, 10-1 in Interscholastic League of Honolulu play, will face co-frontrunner Punahou tomorrow in the regular-season finale. The winner will capture the ILH title and a first-round bye in the state tournament.
Nobriga's absence, of course, was notable. The 6-foot-3 sophomore is a cog in Iolani's offense and defense.
"He missed a study hall," Mugiishi said. "It's something he has to learn at an early age, that academics are the most important thing."
The win was not easy by any means. Mid-Pac stayed within a four- to six-point margin for most of the contest.
"We played hard, got a lead, gave it back," Mugiishi said of his team's season-long pattern. "We're hoping to fix that, but I'm not sure how."
MPI coach Kevin O'Connell was somewhat satisfied with his team's performance.
"It's a step in the right direction for us. The kids battled to the end," he said, pointing to turnovers and defensive lapses as culprits. "We gave up too many easy baskets."
Mid-Pacific, one of the youngest teams in the state, dropped to 4-7 in league play (13-10 overall). Bryson Beirne, a 6-foot-2, 230-pound football recruit to Arizona, led the Owls with 17 points on 7-for-12 shooting.
"We felt we had a size advantage, so we were trying to go inside," O'Connell said.
Beirne, who has been a strong presence since returning to the hardwood, is looking ahead to the league's postseason tourney. That winner gets a shot at a state berth.
"I like the way we battled. Against the good teams, you never back down. We were down 13 and brought it back to two," he said.
Devon Takenaka added 13 points and eight rebounds. Mid-Pac outrebounded Iolani 23-19, but committed 13 of its 19 turnovers in the first half.
Two 10-0 runs turned the tide in the first half. Mid-Pac led 10-5 after Ryan Kurihara connected on back-to-back 3-pointers, but Iolani's fullcourt man defense took a toll. After Kela Marciel turned a steal into a bucket, Iolani led 15-10 early in the second quarter. Marciel, who had four of his team's 13 steals, had another one go for a layup moments later.
By the time Warner sank his fourth free throw of the quarter, the Raiders led 27-14 before halftime.
Mid-Pacific attacked the low post with Beirne, and with Takenaka hitting the offensive boards, the visiting Owls rallied. After Josh Grant's putback, Iolani's lead was down to 32-30 with 3 minutes left in the third quarter.
At Iolani H.S. gym
MID-PACIFIC--Ryan Kurihara 8, Samson Won 3, Marcus Holyfield 2, Jaime Rivera 0, Jarryd Yasui 0, Kellar Ellsworth 2, Josh Grant 2, Bryson Beirne 17, Devon Takenaka 13.
IOLANI--Kela Marciel 6, Ryan Dung 13, Case Miyahira 9, Taylor Mounts 13, Liloa Nobriga 2, Lionel Fujioka 0, Berton Wong 4, Brandon Ball 0, Bricen McCartney 0, Pablo Warner 11.
3-point goals: Mid-Pacific 3 (Kurihara 2, Takenaka), Iolani 3 (Miyahira 2, Dung).
No. 2 Punahou 86, Maryknoll 50
Kameron Steinhoff scored 16 points and Kimo Makaula added a season-high 14 points as the Bufanblu dominated the Spartans.
Maryknoll's Travis Liu nailed four 3-pointers and finished with a game-high 21 points.
At Hemmeter Fieldhouse
MARYKNOLL--Rian Huizingh 0, Reyn Higa 0, Garrick Chock 7, Christian Bueno-Kanei 2, Travis Liu 21, Tim Adora 2, Jordan Ho-Ching 6, Ross Lum 12.
PUNAHOU--Robert Toma 3, Miah Ostrowski 12, Kimo Makaula 14, Dane Okamura 3, Kyle Whitford 8, Dalton Hilliard 9, Henry Cassiday 2, Ted Hawkins 0, Sean McFadden 2, Trevor Crabb 6, Kameron Steinhoff 16, Spencer McLachlin 6, Casey Shibuya 5.
3-point goals -- Maryknoll 6 (Liu 4, Chock 2), Punahou 6 (Whitford 2, Toma, Ostrowski, Makaula, Okamura).
Kamehameha 46, Damien 40
Rykin Enos scored a game-high 14 points and Pono Hanson added 11 points as the Warriors squeezed past the winless Monarchs.
Damien's Kaiakoili Lima was the team's only player in double figures with 11 points.
At Kekuhaupi'o Gym
DAMIEN--Nikko Romuar 2, Anthony Tuitele 2, Chris Cross 0, Aminis Thompson 9, Austin Dawson 2, Kaiakoili Lima 11, Kenneth Rossi 0, Haku Correa 6, Christian Vasconcellos 6, Sione Tau 2.
KAMEHAMEHA--Randy Cummings 1, Kawika Lyons 3, Mitchell Kauweloa 0, Andrew Godinet 0, Pono Hanson 11, Rykin Enos 14, Jan Kauka 3, Levi Goeas 2, Auwae Derego 3, Pii Minns 0, Conrad Scheidts 7, Kamakoa Downey-Jovanovich 2.
3-point goals -- Kamehameha 2 (Kauka, Lyons), Damien none.
ILH Division II
AOP 50, Kamehameha 42
Hanalani 65, Assets 32
Le Jardin 72, Redemption Academy 46
Punahou 44, Saint Louis 38
University 64, Lutheran 33
Word of Life 80, Christian Academy 53
High scorers--AOP: Brad Foster 30, Tri Bourne 12. Kam: Josiah Horner 12, Jeremiah Pahukula 11. Han: PJ Wood 14. Assets: Nick Castello 15. LJ: Joshua Blau 30, Max Rauch 14, David Siemann 11. RA: Adam Crail 21, Joshua Barros 14. StL: Brandon McKee 14. UHS: Dylan Gomez 13, Noah Chong-Viernes 12, Matt Bayan 11. LHS: Derek Alik 17, Michael Abang 12. WOL: Aaron Tipoti 19, Kamalu Kealoha 14, Liko Satele 10. CA: Jason Ko 25, Joshua Ko 17.
JUNIOR VARSITY BOYS
Punahou-Gold 54, Hawaii Baptist 52
Kamehameha-Hawaii 48, Waiakea 39
High scorers--KamH: Mea Wong 15. Waiak: Collin Cabatbat 12, Cody Cabral 10.