Prep Game Of The Week – 2/18/15
OIA DIVISION I CHAMPIONSHIP
FEB. 19, APPROXIMATELY 7 P.M.
@ MCKINLEY HIGH SCHOOL
To have a really good basketball team, you need a couple of star players who can score. To have a great basketball team, you need star players, role players and a great coach. And that’s what we have in Kalaheo. Not only are the Mustangs probably the best basketball team in the OIA, I’ll go ahead and say they’re the best team in the state. In fact, make that the best basketball team in the state in a number of years! OK, now that I’ve put an unbelievable amount of pressure on the Mustangs, let me tell you what I expect to happen in the OIA tournament. Look for senior guard Kupaa Harrison to score 15 a game, fellow senior Kaleb Gilmore to chip in 15-20 and good play from Kekai Smith, Alec MacLeod and Alex Layi. This team has the talent, and they’re coached by a proven winner in Alika Smith. The ‘Stangs will be OIA champs!
I agree that, on paper, Kalaheo is the best team in the OIA. But I don’t agree that it’s the best team in the state — not yet. They have been challenged, and they should expect to get challenged further in the OIA tournament. I see two teams that have a real chance to beat Kalaheo: Kahuku and Leilehua. Kahuku lost a tough overtime game to Kalaheo, and I know that the Red Raiders will have revenge on their minds. The one thing Kahuku has that Kalaheo lacks is height. Hyrum Harris is a rebounding machine and his shot-blocking ability could give Kalaheo fits. Also, Kahuku has won 10 games in a row, so they’re on a roll. Leilehua is a smart, disciplined team that doesn’t make many mistakes, and it’s undefeated in the OIA. I see a very close OIA championship game, with Kahuku or Leilehua pulling off the upset over the Mustangs.
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