KAPAA — Kaye Serapio and Kiersten Gummerus combined for 43 points to lead Waimea High School girls basketball to a 64-56 win over Kapaa High School Friday night during the Kauai Interscholastic Federation match at the Bernice Hundley Gym in Kapaa.
Honed to just seven players suited up, the Menehune stayed ahead of the Wahine Warriors through the first half before Kapaa caught up in the third quarter before an audience that had swollen from its sparse showing as the sun dipped below the western mountains.
Serapio topped the scoring with a game-high 26 points, including a third quarter three-ball, and a 13-for-16 showing at the free throw line attesting to the physical game put on by Kapaa.
“We went into the locker room at the half, not satisfied,” said Waimea coach Natalie Mata, whose Menehune held a 33-27 lead despite a strong comeback effort by the Warriors. “We were making too many careless mistakes. We definitely were not satisfied.”
The halftime lead came with a strong showing by Gummerus who popped two bombs from outside the three-point arc for an 11-point contribution to the lead.
Gummerus, like Serapio, marked in all of the frames and finished with 17 points, including a nine-for-13 showing at the foul line.
The Lady Warriors responded to a 14-15 and 27-33 deficits in the third quarter when they put together a 14-12 run behind the aggressive Hailey Overmyer who dropped seven points to fuel the comeback with back-to-back buckets that gave Kapaa its first lead in the game, 37-34 with 4:10 remaining in the stanza.
Waimea answered the deficit with 2:58 showing when the bench (of two) erupted in glee as Cori Burton was nailed on a Plus One play that resulted in the 39-39 tie. Serapio added to the bench’s glee on a three-ball that put Waimea up, 42-39.
“The girls played hard,” said Kapaa coach William Aki. “But we want them to be aggressive out there. We just need to keep playing hard — all the way to the final buzzer.”
Jaliyah Casem and Mele Tafea, playing all four quarters, set the pace for the Warrior effort on 15 and 14 points, respectively. Overmyer added 12 points, Lilya Cummings finished with seven marks, and Angelica Cudiamat finished with six first-half points.
Following the lead set by Kaye Serapio and Gummerus, the Menehune got 11 points from Hazel Serapio and nine points from Burton.
With the win, Waimea improves to 2-2 and faces Kauai (2-2) Monday night at the Kauai High School gym where the junior varsity match starts at 5:30 p.m. followed by the varsity contest tipping off 20 minutes following the end of the JV game.
“This has been hard on the girls,” Mata said. “Following the schedule adjustments, we’ve been on the road for a long time — we don’t go back home until Friday. But hard is good for the girls.”
Kapaa enjoys the bye until Wednesday when it hosts Kauai at the Bernice Hundley Gym.
Earlier in the evening, the Waimea JV girls took a 38-21 win over the Kapaa JV behind 10 points from Tisha Burton and nine points from Kathleen Alvarez. Kapaa got six points, both scores coming from outside the three-point mark, from Kaydence Kaui. Tatum Luczon ended with four points, and Jada Ines added three points.
Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-0453 or email@example.com.