Punahou still No. 1;
Kahuku, Iolani rise

Goliath has spoken, and the Star-Bulletin Girls Basketball Top 10 panel has listened.

The Interscholastic League of Honolulu finally opened its regular season Friday, and Punahou left no doubt about its dominance. The Buffanblu, who zapped Mid-Pacific 54-28, collected 18 of 19 first-place ballots to remain atop the poll for a fifth week in a row.

The Buffanblu weren't flawless. Heralded center Shawna Kuehu "struggled" with 12 points, 13 rebounds and seven assists in limited playing time. The struggle came only because the 5-foot-9 freshman missed a number of layups in her ILH debut. Coach Mike Taylor emptied the bench early as Punahou improved to 10-1 overall.

Konawaena, with a lopsided win over Waiakea and a 38-32 victory against Honokaa, remained at No. 2. The Wildcats, behind seniors Jessica Hanato, Hina Kimitete and Haunani Liftee, are 10-1 and a heavy favorite to repeat as Big Island Interscholastic Federation champion.

Punahou toppled Konawaena 52-38 at the Punahou Wahine Spring Classic last month.

Maryknoll, with a 44-41 win over Kamehameha on Saturday, remained at No. 3. The Spartans, like Konawaena, have only one loss -- a rout at the hands of Punahou during the Lady Falcon Invitational Tournament.

Kahuku moved up a notch to No. 4 after wins over McKinley and Kalaheo. The Lady Raiders got another big game from Aisha Ale, who had 16 points and 13 rebounds against Kalaheo. They overcame 31 turnovers in the 49-44 win Saturday.

Iolani also moved up a spot, landing at No. 5 after an ILH-opening win over Sacred Hearts.

Kalaheo dropped two positions to No. 6. The Lady Mustangs made just nine of their 26 free-throw attempts in the loss at Kahuku.

With wins over Roosevelt and McKinley, Kaiser improved to 4-1 in Oahu Interscholastic Association East play. The Lady Cougars moved up two spots to No. 7 in the poll and have a big matchup Wednesday against Kalaheo.

Honokaa slipped only one spot after the road loss at Konawaena, while Kamehameha dropped to No. 9 after the narrow loss to Maryknoll.

Kamehameha-Hawaii returned to the Top 10 after a 60-48 win over Hilo. The Warriors replaced the Lady Vikings at the 10 spot.


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