Govs force 1 more


POSTED: Friday, February 20, 2009

This time, the Farrington Governors offered no pardon.

Using a stifling fullcourt press, Farrington dominated the final quarter to break open a close battle for a 52-41 win over Roosevelt last night in the Oahu Interscholastic Association Red Conference playoffs.

Farrington, facing elimination, forced a championship matchup with the Rough Riders. The teams meet again tomorrow at McKinley Student Council Gym.

Brydgette Tatupu-Leopoldo scored 14 points, including 8-for-8 shooting at the free-throw line in the final quarter. Valerie Lesu, who missed last week's games because of a club volleyball trip to Las Vegas, returned and scored 13 points for Farrington (23-5 overall, 17-1 league).

“;Today, we had more heart. We came out ready to play,”; Tatupu-Leopoldo said.

It was a remarkable performance by No. 4-ranked Farrington, which won its third playoff game in as many nights without showing signs of fatigue.

Coach Caroline Tatupu rotated her players in and out from the start, using nine as early as the first quarter. Now, the Govs have a shot at their first OIA title since 1991, when Harry Pacarro was coach.

“;It means a lot to our school. It's been a while since we've gone this far,”; Tatupu said. “;The girls have worked hard all season.”;

Sixth-ranked Roosevelt (16-9, 11-5) had more turnovers (20) than field goals (15), including six giveaways in the key fourth stanza. Tasia Kamakawiwoole and Mikela Thoemmes led the Rough Riders with 11 each

“;We had some good shots and some didn't fall tonight,”; coach Clint Chikamori said. “;But I'll take the shots we got.”;

Farrington shot only 31 percent from the field (16-for-51), but was 72 percent from the line (18-for-25) and had a relatively low 14 turnovers.

Roosevelt also shot 31 percent from the field (15-for-48) and was 69 percent from the line (11-for-16). Both teams had 35 rebounds, but the Rough Riders couldn't overcome the 20 turnovers.

It was a far cry from last week's matchup, when Roosevelt rode a 24-point performance by Thoemmes for a stunning 62-60 win. This time, Farrington fronted Thoemmes on the low post all night and used a box-and-one defense to lock down Roosevelt sharpshooter Nicole Ramirez, who finished with just two points. Thoemmes still managed 12 rebounds, but took only eight shots. Ramirez had just four shots.

“;We didn't want to leave her open,”; Tatupu said of Ramirez. “;The first time (last week), she killed us. We had to take her out of the game.”;

Roosevelt used its own box-and-one defense to limit Tatupu-Leopoldo to just four points in last week's matchup, but the Govs used a multitude of screens to free her up this time. That opened up the lanes for Lesu, Kirsten Liana and Sofia Folaumahina. Liana had seven points and nine rebounds, and Folaumahina had six points and seven caroms.

Roosevelt had a brief five-point lead early in the second quarter, but the lead dwindled and changed hands 11 times before the fourth quarter. After Kamakawiwoole committed her fourth personal foul and left the game with 7:03 remaining, the Govs went on a 14-2 run.


Farrington (17-1) 816111752
Roosevelt (11-5) 91513441

ROOSEVELT—Kelcie Namba 8, Kathleen Nakata 3, Nicole Ramirez 2, Abcde Furuta-Harada 0, Mikela Thoemmes 11, Joshy Noga 6, Tasia Kamakawiwoole 11.

FARRINGTON—Natalie Mata 3, Lucky Crichton 0, Brydgette Tatupu-Leopoldo 14, Precious Maave 0, Janell Nance 5, Macilee Moi 0, Kirsten Liana 7, Valerie Lesu 13, Sofia Folaumahina 6, Lusina Otineru 4

3-point goals—Farrington 2 (Tatupu-Leopoldo, Lesu), Roosevelt none.