Kapa’a impressive in victory

KAPA’A — Saturday night, the book on Kaua’i was written, and its title is Under Pressure.

Host Kapa’a swarmed the Red Raiders with relentless full-court pressure, forcing 35 turnovers in a 53-49 Kaua’i Interscholastic Federation victory. The loss drops Kaua’i to 2-1 in league play and sets up a big showdown Tuesday night when the Red Raiders host Waimea.

No less than two-thirds of the Red Raiders’ turnovers were directly related to the Warriors’ press.

Kapa’a (1-3) showed endless energy, harassing the ball handler at all times and exposing an area of deficiency in Kaua’i’s game.

After Thursday’s loss at Waimea, Kapa’a coach Michael Ban said his team has the pieces and the talent, but lacked focus that night.

Saturday it displayed all three, and served notice it will be a major factor in the upcoming round-robin tournament.

When not pestering Kaua’i’s ball handlers, the Warriors were executing Ban’s gameplan with precision. Kapa’a fired the ball into the post with consistency, using its height to finish layups and short jump shots with regularity.

Sophomore Kanoe Arinaga led the Warriors with 16 points. Ihilani Yama pitched in 10.

Not a team to roll over, however, the Red Raiders made the game interesting late.

Trailing 49-38 in the fourth quarter, the Red Raiders went on an 11-1 run, closing the barrage when Belinda Butac connected on her second 3-pointer to shrink the lead to 51-49.

But Kaua’i could not get over the hump. Sharlene Carillo and Arinaga sunk free throws in succession to seal the game.

Junior Erin Garlie led Kaua’i with a double-double. She scored 13 points and grabbed 10 rebounds.

In Saturday’s junior varsity game, Kaua’i ran away from Kapa’a, 49-31.


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