Maryknoll jumps
to No. 5 as key
tournament looms

The good news for Maryknoll basketball fans is that their hoopsters are moving up the ranks again.

The Spartans advanced one notch to No. 5 in today's Star-Bulletin top 10 girls basketball poll following last week's win over Mid-Pacific.

The bad news? Rankings are fun, but have the nutritional equivalent of whipped cream.

For Maryknoll, being one of three Interscholastic League of Honolulu teams among the best five in the poll carries no weight when the league tournament tips off tomorrow.

Maryknoll (15-5) will need to win the ILH playoffs to earn the league's second and final state-tournament berth. Waiting in the wings is young, third-ranked Iolani, a team that downed Maryknoll twice during the regular season.

More precarious than that, any of the ILH's "lower-tier" teams -- Mid-Pacific, Kamehameha and Sacred Hearts -- could easily pull an upset.

The regular season is marked with a host of close margins between these teams.

Iolani (16-6) plays tomorrow's Sacred Hearts-Kamehameha winner on Wednesday at McCabe Gym. Maryknoll and Mid-Pacific also play at McCabe.

The only other team to advance in this week's poll is Kahuku, which moved a step closer to defending its Oahu Interscholastic Association crown.

The Lady Raiders were patient against a deliberate Moanalua squad in Friday's quarterfinal round, posting a 44-33 win to earn a state berth.

Their path to the title got a little easier -- on paper -- after Roosevelt upset Kalaheo 52-51 on Friday. But if Roosevelt has put its injuries in the past and is playing to its potential, that actually won't make the road smoother for Kahuku.

Kaiser, ranked No. 8, has the dubious task of taking on the "Cinderella" Rough Riders tomorrow in a semifinal game at Kahuku.

Roosevelt (13-13) didn't garner enough votes to land in this week's Top 10.

Punahou (19-1), with a surprisingly lopsided win at Iolani, remained at No. 1 for the 10th week in a row.

The Buffanblu, who amassed 17 first-place votes, have a bye until next week's state tourney.

Konawaena, which clinched a state berth last week, drew the only other first-place vote.


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