Pupule’s boys hoops ballot 2/3

by Paul Honda on February 4, 2014

Here’s how I voted in this week’s Star-Advertiser Boys Basketball Top 10. Running low on time, so I’ll finish up this post tonight.

Pupule’s ballot
BKB 2/3/14
1. MS (21-3)
2. PUN (21-3)
3. FAR (21-4)
4. KS (17-8)
5. IOL (16-7)
6. KON (18-3)
7. HPA (13-3)
8. KLH (23-7)
9. STL (11-11)
10. BAL (17-3)

Bubbly
KOH (8-7)
LAH (17-8)
CAM (15-9)
MOA (14-8)
KAH (13-9)
MIL (12-9)
STF (15-11)
ROS (7-8)
DMS (13-5)
WAIK (13-5)

The poll is available to subscribers here.
You can also see it on the front page of Hawaii Prep World.

Farrington senior Jacob McEnroe. (Krystle Marcellus / Star-Advertiser)

Farrington senior Jacob McEnroe. (Krystle Marcellus / Star-Advertiser)

A longtime hoopaholic friend asked why I have Kamehameha at No. 4. I suppose it could be justifiable if I had the Warriors at No. 7 or 6. Or 5. Four? Well, I know I’m probably higher on KS than most voters; they were fifth in today’s Top 10.

For me, the work they did a two weeks ago, knocking off then-No. 1 Punahou and then-No. 3 ‘Iolani. A close (40-39) loss to Saint Louis sapped their momentum a bit, but that’s not a horrible loss. (STL is on my ballot and has been since preseason.) It’s a very fine line between the first five teams on my ballot.

Konawaena had been as high as No. 3 on my list until the loss at Kohala last weekend. Kohala is always a tough foe, especially at home. If you’ve ever driven to Kapaau, you know what I mean. You might get there a bit weary from a 50- or 100-mile drive, and the Cowboys — when they’re really good — come right at you with fastbreak after fastbreak. That’s what they did to Konawaena, scoring instantly off turnovers.

For me, Konawaena is the kind of team that travels well because Coach Donald Awa depends on his team’s defense and halfcourt execution. They like to run, but it starts with defense, and the seniors on that team, like Brandon Awa and Jonah Bredeson, take pride in it. They’ve endured and succeeded for the most part in BIIF play, so it’ll be interesting to see how the rest of the season plays out. They’ve got HPA at home this Saturday.

That creates a dilemma of sorts. The Wildcat girls “host” a state-tourney quarterfinal against the Mililani-Radford winner on Saturday at Kealakehe High School. Tip-off is 6 p.m. Coach Bobbie Awa’s son is Brandon, and husband Donald is the boys coach, and their game with HPA is back at Konawaena — Senior Night — with a 7:30 p.m. start.

HHSAA executive director Chris Chun is optimistic that the Konawaena girls game will still draw a healthy crowd, and I agree. And I hope. After all these years, getting to play a “home” game in the state tourney is a huge gift, really. I hope things work out for the boys and girls supporters at Konawaena that day. Maybe an early start for the boys game? We’ll see.

Much as I like Baldwin, a tall, physical, patient team, the Bears keep struggling (by their own high standard) to dominate the MIL. With the MIL having such a spotty history aside from Baldwin in boys hoops, it’s not easy to give the Bears the benefit of the doubt. (Unlike the BIIF.) It’s a washing machine kind of season in just about every league. Things will sort out eventually.

As for Saint Louis at No. 9 on my ballot, they’ve earned that in my book from way back in preseason. (They’re at No. 10 in the Top 10.) They had some nice, quality wins in nonconference play, and I can understand the fans who wonder if STL deserves to be in there. It’s been awhile since they notched a marquee win. But as far as simply competing against top competition, there are more question marks than answers among the rest. The Bubblies.

All the teams on my Bubbly list can beat each other. And they have. Kahuku seemed poised to make a move higher recently, but a few losses, including one to Roosevelt, have leveled out the Red Raiders for the time being. Roosevelt is probably the most improved team since the start of preseason, losing five in a row, and lately winning five of its last six.

Waiakea? They have a Saint Louis-like quality, having played so many quality teams, but still looking for that signature win. It’s tough to complain about a 13-5 team, but once they make it to the state tourney — I’d be surprised if they didn’t — a whole new chapter opens up for the Warriors.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Jus Gonsalves February 4, 2014 at 4:13 pm

Nice pic of my nephew! As Farrington alumni.. I couldn’t be prouder of the job they’re doing in sports this (and in 13) year. From football (JV and Vars) to basketball [both girls and boys] they’re solid, keep up the good work!

TJ February 5, 2014 at 8:19 am

don’t forget that Iolani just beat Saint Louis only by six last week. Crusaders could a potential upset special team in the playoffs

steve February 5, 2014 at 8:31 am

So wait a minute You made Kamehameha #1 at the same time discounting,Maryknoll beating Kamehameha a whopping 2 weeks later from lasts weeks poll Now you give Kamehameha the benefit of the doubt of beating Iolani and Punahou a whole 2 weeks later? What ever happened to lasts week logic? St Louis beat Kamehameha, and Iolani beat St Louis. Shouldn’t Iolani be ahead of Kamehameha? I think we just found a Kamehameha homer right here! Shifting the goal posts, i love it!

Paul Honda February 6, 2014 at 3:50 pm

Well, Steve, that would be the first time I’ve been called a KS homer. Probably wouldn’t be the last. But as I mentioned a few times, head to head is my top criteria, especially the most current head-to-head results. The ILH is brutally tough. Things change week to week, day to day. KS lost and I moved them down on my ballot this week.

I still want to see your Top 10.

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