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Kamehameha is top seed


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POSTED: Monday, March 02, 2009

Unlike the girls basketball state tournament, the Hawaiian Airlines/HHSAA Boys Basketball State Championships don't seem to have a strong power base in Division I on the neighbor islands, at least not this year.

As expected, Kamehameha drew the top seed from the HHSAA committee yesterday. Kamehameha (19-3 overall) will bring a nine-game win streak into the tournament, which tips off Wednesday. The Interscholastic League of Honolulu champion Warriors got the nod over Kahuku, which has the No. 2 seed after winning the Oahu Interscholastic Association's double-elimination tournament. The Red Raiders (21-2) were ranked No. 1 in the Star-Bulletin Top 10 before losing to Kaimuki during the OIA tournament. They battled back and defeated Kaimuki twice last week to eke out the league title.

Waiakea and Baldwin also received first-round byes, but haven't had a lot of success against ranked teams. That won't matter once the tourney begins, though. Some teams, like Kamehameha and ILH runner-up 'Iolani, have been idle for more than a week.

“;I think there's going to be a little anxiety with all the waiting,”; Kamehameha guard Pii Minns said. “;If we could play at the start of the week, we definitely want to play already.”;

The Warriors will face the Kalaheo-Radford winner on Thursday at McKinley's gym. Kaimuki, which was one win from taking the OIA title, will play Keaau on Wednesday, and that winner will take on Baldwin.

Punahou earned a state berth after winning a play-in game at Kamehameha-Hawaii 52-36 on Saturday. The Buffanblu will play Campbell at Radford. That winner will see Kahuku in the quarterfinal round.

ILH runner-up 'Iolani will meet Lahainaluna, with Waiakea awaiting the victor.

Castle, which edged Kailua to win the OIA White Conference title, has the No. 1 seed in the Division II state tourney. Kohala, which was undefeated in BIIF D-II play, is the second seed. Hawaii Baptist is the third seed and Molokai is the fourth seed.

The D-II tourney also starts on Wednesday, with games at Farrington and Kalani.

Look for the state-tournament preview story in tomorrow's Star-Bulletin.

» Complete schedule in Scoreboard.