Lady Warriors hold on, 56-48

KAPA‘A — The Kapa‘a Lady Warriors built up a big lead and then held off a strong charge by the Waimea Lady Menehune to come away with a 56-48 win, Tuesday night at the Kapa‘a High School Gym.

The biggest strength for Kapa‘a in the win was its ability to create mistakes off the full-court press. It came away with easy buckets after numerous turnovers beneath the Waimea basket.

The Lady Warriors were led by Ala McCabe’s game-high 19 points. She was also a key component to their pressure defense, coming up with a number of steals for Kapa‘a.

Jessilyn Aki was a solid force in the backcourt, moving between both guard spots and scoring 10 points.

Vakeesha Lagazo scored a team-high 15 points for Waimea, followed by Brandee Victorino’s 12.

The Lady Menehune got off to a hot start, jumping out to a 7-0 lead just under three minutes into the game. But the Lady Warriors made their own run, scoring the game’s next seven points.

After a Lagazo layup made it 13-7 Waimea, Kapa‘a closed the first quarter on a 12-2 run, which included a 3-pointer from Mahea Hanie that she immdediately followed with a steal and layup off the press.

Both teams were sloppy with the ball in the second quarter and a long scoring drought was the result. Kapa‘a finally took advantage of the turnovers and took a 35-23 lead into halftime.

With the teams barely out of the locker rooms, Kapa‘a scored two quick buckets to open the third quarter and held a 16-point lead — their largest of the game.

Trailing by 15 entering the final quarter, Waimea began to turn things around. A Lagazo 3-pointer and two straight buckets from Erin Connelly made it a 50-43 contest with 3:35 to play.

The Lady Menehune remained within striking distance in the final minutes, but Kapa‘a managed to eat up enough clock and held on, moving its record to 2-0 in the young season.

Waimea now sits at 1-1 and will be off until Tuesday, when it faces Kaua‘i at the Kaua‘i High School Gym. JV action starts at 5:30 with varsity to follow.

Kapa‘a will look to remain unbeaten against Kaua‘i (0-2), Friday at the Kapa‘a High School Gym.

In the JV matchup earlier in the night, Kapa‘a won by jumping out to an early lead and not letting Waimea make a run, finishing with a 42-31 victory.

Krystal Christian led all scorers with 15 points for the Lady Warriors. Brittnee Balonick added seven, while Mahina Pa had six.

Jullynn Ramos scored 11 to lead Waimea, with Nicolei Banasihan and Brittny Perez scoring nine and five points, respectively.

Kapa‘a JV will face Kaua‘i Friday, with Waimea facing the Raiders on Tuesday.

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