Prep Game Of The Week – 2/25/15
SATURDAY, FEB. 28, AT APPROXIMATELY 7 P.M.
@ STAN SHERIFF CENTER
First of all, congratulations to Konawaena and Honokaa for winning the HHSAA Girls State Basketball Championships in Division II and Division II, respectively. Three of the final four teams were from Hawaii island or Maui. In the boys tournament, however, Oahu will be dominant. Punahou looks really good. I talked to coach Darren Matsuda the other day, and his squad is pretty healthy this late in the season. They are the pride of the ILH. But there’s a little school in Aikahi that is loaded with talent — the Kalaheo Mustangs. Everyone knows about Kaleb Gilmore and Kupaa Harrison, the big man who can score like a guard. But Kalaheo has great depth, and when you play so many games in such a short amount of time, that will come in handy. I know they got upset by Farrington in the OIA playoffs, but they will bounce back. Coach Alika Smith’s players will run through a wall for him. They’ve done it before and they’ll do it again. Kalaheo wins it all in DI. Oh, and in DII, Kaiser will win it all!
Before March Madness comes February Madness, high school style! I’ve been to every boys high school championship game except one since 1990. It was tough to pick this year’s winner, but in the end I see Kahuku cutting down the nets at Stan Sheriff Center Saturday night. What separates the Red Raiders from the rest of the field is defense. Kahuku has players who protect the rim — that is, if you can even get a shot at the rim over Hyrum Harris or Denhym Brooke. There isn’t a team playing in the tourney that will be able to score in the paint against Kahuku. And, oh yeah, they can score. First-year head coach Alan Akina has done a great job, and his son Keanu can light it up from the outside. I don’t see a weakness on this team, and when you play strong defense, block shots and protect the rim like Kahuku does, you have dimensions that other schools can’t match. When Kahuku wins it all, just remember that you heard it here first!
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Chris Hart and Gary Dickman
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