Kekaulike Stuns Kamehameha Kapalama at State Hoop Tourney 43-38
King Kekaulike High School’s Jansen Agapay hit his team’s only three-pointer of the game with 44 seconds left to lift Na Alii to an opening round upset of Kamehameha Kapalama, 43-38, in the Hawaiian Airlines Boys Basketball State Championships at Radford Gymnasium.
“He just told himself that coach says I should shoot it if I’m open and he was open and made it,” Kekaulike head coach Bill Naylor said of Agapay’s 3-pointer from the corner. “It was one of those hustle plays that started with Jordan’s (Mauliola) rebound. He hit Agapay with the pass and he was open and hit the shot.”
Kekaulike will now face second-seeded Kahuku in one quarterfinal game tonight at 7 p.m. at Radford Gym. The game will be broadcast live on ESPN 550-AM with Barry Helle and Fred Guzman. It will also be televised live on OC16.
Maui Interscholastic League champion Baldwin will face Leilehua, 61-43 winners over Kapolei on Wednesday at McKinley Gym. The Bears take on the Mules at 5 p.m. ESPN 550-AM will also broadcast the Baldwin-Leilehua game live from McKinley.
Meanwhile, at the Division II state basketball tournament, Seabury Hall plays No. 4 St. Francis today at 5 o’clock at Farrington Gym.
With the game tied at 35 with 1:18 to play, Agapay drove to the basket and missed a layup attempt, which was rebounded by Mauliola. Mauliola returned the ball to Agapay in the left corner, who drilled the shot to give Kekaulike the lead at 41-38 with 44 seconds left in the game.
In addition to the big 3-pointer, Naylor said his team sealed the game by making four big free throws down the stretch, including two from Jacob Havron with 20 seconds remaining.
“I’m excited for everybody,” Naylor said. “Being the first Kekaulike team to come to the state tournament and getting a chance to beat the defending state champions is a big deal for everyone. I told the boys before the game we just want to keep it close and be in a position to win in the end.
“It was an exhausting game for us. We laid everything we had out there. We kept it close and our defense got the job done for us.”
“It feels amazing right now,” said Chase Iwata-Bartelme, who had a team-high 16 points for Kekaulike. “I’m so proud of our team. We knew it was going to be tough and in the end it was defense, that’s what won the game for us.”
Kekaulike’s defense held the Warriors to one 3-pointer in 12 attempts and no field goals in the fourth period.
Naylor said it felt like his team won over a few fans along the way.
“It sounded like maybe six people were clapping for us at the beginning of the game, then maybe 26, and then by the fourth quarter it felt like the whole side was cheering for us.”
Kamehameha built an early 9-0 advantage in the first quarter, but King Kekaulike chipped away at the margin, closing to 19-14 at halftime.
“There was a time when both teams were running and throwing the ball up,” Iwata-Bartelme said. “Finally, we settled down on defense and made some stops.”
The Warriors would continue to lead until the 5:32 mark in the fourth period, when Agapay fed Havron a pass for a layup to tie the score at 33-33.
“It was a total team effort,” Iwata-Bartelme said. “We’re going to have to put the game behind us now because it’s going to take another well-disciplined game. We’re going to have to come out more pumped, more hyped and more focused than ever before.”
Dyrbe Enos led the Warriors with 20 points. Agapay had 11 for Kekaulike.
At James Alegre Gym, Radford
King Kekaulike 43, Kamehameha 38
KAMEHAMEHA (10-6) 13 6 14 5 – 38
KING KEKAULIKE (9-4) 6 8 14 15 – 43
KAMEHAMEHA: Noa Kinimaka 0 0-0 0, JT Campbell 0 0-2 0, Mana‘o Salvani 0 0-0 0, Taylor Taliulu 3 0-0 7, Dyrbe Enos 5 9-10 20, Makoa Camanse-Stevens 1 0-0 2, Austin Gerard 0 0-0 0, Makana Harrison 0 0-0 0, Kamal Olosofoyeku 1 0-0 2, Noah Borden 1 1-2 3, Zerin Parker 2 0-0 4. Totals 13 10-14 38.
KING KEKAULIKE: Jansen Agapay 3 4-4 11, Jonell Alfonso 0 0-0 0, Alroy Ferreira 0 0-0 0, Chase Iwata Bartelme 7 2-5 16, Keita Naito 0 0-0 0, Austin Ferreira 0 0-0 0, Jordan Mauliola 0 2-2 2, Jacob Havron 4 2-3 10, Gabe Gunter 2 0-0 4. Totals 16 10-14 43.
3-point goals: Kamehameha 2 (Taliulu, Enos), King Kekaulike 1 (Agapay).