Jake Holtz poured in 24 points and Jydon Hall added 11 from the point as Damien outran Kalaheo 66-57 to capture the Pete Smith Classic championship on Wednesday night.
Holtz, a 6-foot-3 junior who plays quarterback for the Monarchs’ football team, was a force in the post and in transition. Trayden Bayudan also chipped in 11 points while Hall controlled the tempo. Hall was instrumental when Kalaheo tried to use fullcourt pressure to rally.
The home team trailed 60-40 in the fourth quarter, then splashed three treys during an 11-0 run, but never got closer than nine points. Ryan Pardini led the Mustangs with 18 points. Robert Thompson added 14 and Aaron Baker swished four treys for 12 points.
The Monarchs are 3-0, including a stunning 74-60 win over two-time Division II defending champion St. Francis on Tuesday in the semifinal round.
“I think any game we want, we can win. We can only beat ourselves,” said Hall, who started last season as a freshman.
Damien’s 2-2-1 press was a hindrance to Kalaheo.
“We’ll take it game by game,” Monarchs coach Alvin Stephenson said. “Jydon is a warrior. One thing I love about him. We have this unique relationship. We might yell at each other, but at the end of the day I trust him with everything. We love each other.”
Hall’s offseason was busy with daily workouts at Damien’s Bishop Scanlan Gymnasium.
“I’d text coach to see if I could get a workout in during the morning. At least 500 shots and 100 free throws,” Hall said.
The sting of last year’s state final loss to St. Francis lingers.
“We want a state championship,” Hall said. “We still have to prove ourselves.”
>> St. Francis 87, Leilehua 64
In the third-place game, Kameron Ng poured in 39 points, hitting 14 of 16 from the foul line, and younger brother Kordel Ng added 26 for the Saints. Titus Liu chipped in 10 points. Logan Lasi had 14 and Zach Gagnon tallied 10 for the Mules.
>> Kaiser 87, Punahou II 65
Center Cyrus Singelman pumped in 25 points and Mario Drummer added 23 to lead the Cougars in the fifth-place battle. Kenji Toyama scored 10. Chris Tamayo and Luke Bowers had 10 points each for the D-II Buffanblu.
>> Campbell 67, Le Jardin 25
Mitchell Williams scored 32 points for the Sabers in the seventh-place game.