KAILUA-KONA — Hawaii Prep pulled away late in a defensive battle on the hardcourt at Kealakehe High School on Monday to snap a regular season winless streak that dates back to the 2014-15 season. Ka Makani coasted in the second half on the way to a 42-13 road victory over the Waveriders.
“The girls have been working hard for four years and finally they are building confidence,” said HPA head coach Craig Kimura. “If you look at the Division II teams at our level this year, we played well in every one of the games, we just couldn’t finish.”
Kimura credits Monday’s victory with getting mentally stronger on the court.
“In prior games when we had a lead we would come out flat, and we were not running and getting back on defense. Tonight’s win showed what they can do, and I believe we can move forward now.”
Against Kealakehe, Hawaii Prep jumped out to a 10-3 lead after the first quarter and led 20-9 at the half.
They did not let their foot off the gas in the second half, outscoring the Waveriders 8-3 in the third quarter and 13-1 in the fourth.
Freshman Megan Jarrell led the Hawaii Prep charge in the first half with a strong second quarter, netting nine points.
She added a 3-pointer in the third quarter but suffered an injury and did not return. She left on crutches, with opinions on the injury ranging from something minor all the way up to a torn ACL, which usual comes with a year of rehab.
“We don’t know yet about the injury but we are hoping it is a sprain,” Kimura said.
Payton Au stepped up in the absence of Jarrell, scoring eight of her 16 points in the fourth quarter. She had 13 in the second half.
Mikaela Chong also had a strong night for Ka Makani, netting nine points.
Iolani Kamakau led the scoring for the Waveriders with six points, all of which came from the free throw line.
Hawaii Prep 68, Kohala 42: In battle between Division II title contenders, the defending BIIF champion Ka Makani had a hot first quarter, outscoring the Cowboys 22-10.
Jonah Hurney scored 13 points apiece for HPA (2-2), which led 40-26 at halftime.
Maui Hook scored 13 points for the Cowboys (3-2).
Keaau 69, St. Joseph 28: Rico Handy scored 14 points and Gabe Bergen added 11 points for the Division I Cougars (5-1).
Ruka Suda scored 11 points for the Division II Cardinals (1-3).
Hilo 54, Kohala 15: Asia Castillo and Mandi Kawaha each scored 13 points for the Division I Vikings (6-1), who host crosstown rival Waiakea (6-0) on Friday.
Kiana Kauka scored 10 points for the Division II Cowgirls (4-4), who trailed 38-3 at halftime.