Kaulupono splits in county’s Division 2 girls hoops

KALAHEO — Kaulupono split its series in the county’s Girls Division 2 basketball games Tuesday night at the Kalaheo Neighborhood Center.

Taegan Keep came alive in the second half of the first game, notching eight of her game-total 10 points before fouling out. Petite guard Monique Lorenzo, getting hasseled by the taller Kamikaze players, finished with eight points, her scoring balanced between the halves.

But the effort came up short, 31-21 against the Kamikaze, the red shirts’ key coming from Lila Hearn who matched up well against Kaulupono’s Keep.

Hearn bucketed a game-high 12 points while serving as the pivotal center to distribute the ball to the outside of the paint.

Kaila Shimabukuro finished with eight points in the win followed by Chyna Hanano adding three points. Monique Tomacder, demonstrating strong hustle in the paint, Sierra Fernandez, Sheryl Ann Tomas and Britney Ehia each added pairs to the win.

Following the scoring leaders for Kaulupono in Game 1, D’Annalyn Helgen dropped a pair and Dawn Serapio added a second-half point in the effort.

The loss set the stage for the second match where Kaulupono centered its play around Jasmine Santella and Kiarra Palacio, a forward and a guard, alternating the players until the final frame when both players were on the floor at the same time.

Santella finished with 11 points to lead Kaulupono in its 30-20 win over the Seacats, a young team, matching up against the Seacats’ Cambria Ort in the paint.

Palacio’s task was to move the ball, her scoring coming from several breakaways on turnovers en route to finishing with 10 points in the win. Shaelyn Erickson added four points, Apryl Grande and T.J. Ramos each dropped a pair and a digit from China Yasay rounded out the win.

After being held to just five points in the first half, three coming from Risa Whetsel, a key player for the Seacats in its effort, the Seacats matched that production in the fourth frame, catching Kaulupono napping in the paint as Whetsel took a quick feed from the inbound to announce the yellow shirts.

The play triggered the Seacats’ fans who cheered every bucket dropped by the girls coached by Bill Suttell.

When the dust settled, Whetsel finished with high-point honors for the Seacats, coming up with seven big second half marks en route to her game-total 10 points. Ort, the big center for Seacats, was joined by Kira Smith, each player dropping four points. A pair in the final period which sent Mackenzie Hubbard celebrating rounded out the effort.

The Girls Division 2, or players in the sixth, seventh and eighth grades, take the floor Saturday when the Ballers take on Team Lihu‘e Red in an 11 a.m. tipoff at the Kalaheo Neighborhood Center followed by Hanakila taking on Team Lihu‘e Black in a noon tipoff.

Prior to the girls, a pair of Boys Division 3, or players in the seventh and eighth grades, take the floor starting at nine. Another pair of Boys Division 3 games follow the girls’ matchups starting at 1 p.m.

The Ballers 1 take on Papalina in the 9 a.m. tipoff followed by the Ballers 2 going up against Westside Basketball at 10 a.m. Hanakila takes on Team Lihu‘e Red in the 1 p.m. match followed by Lepo Ula going up against Team Lihu‘e Black in the 2 p.m. game.

Dennis Fujimoto, photographer and staff writer, can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 253) or dfujimoto@thegardenisland.com.


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