Punahou is the quickest group and deepest group of athletes I’ve seen so far. Coach Darren Matsuda can press with his first five or his second five. Full court. Half court. Kaiser has been behind for most of this first half, but has stayed close with heady veteran plays by PG Nic Tom and swingman Keoua Mahiko.
Interesting that Mahiko was whistled for two offensive fouls. They’re allowing some contact by the defender, so Mahiko shoved his guy a bit on the way to the hoop and got whistled. Tough call. Mahiko has remained aggressive and scored on a sweet spin move to the hoop, but they keep corralling Kaiser’s ballhandlers and stole the ball from him, and his foul led to a bonus FT.
Punahou is relentless defensively. They’re willing to gamble that your sixth and seventh men will throw the ball away, so the traps come in full court and half court. After committing just three turnovers in the first quarter, Kaiser gave the ball away six times in the second. Kalaugher should be a weapon as the hub in the middle of the court, attacking mercilessly against a spread-out defense. But, that’s easier said than done.
Halftime: Punahou 32, Kaiser 26.
Humidity getting thick here in the second half. Buffs double-teaming at midcourt off their man defense, really effective. They’ve opened the lead to 40-31 essentially using players who have played just half of the game so far thanks to their depth.
Zayne Chong and Cole Arceneaux with back-to-back steals for layups. PUN 44, KAIS 35.
Byproduct of PUN’s aggressive defense is that they are now over the foul limit with 3:21 left in the third quarter.
Third quarter ends with PUN ahead 50-43. The tempo is getting hot.
No slowing down in the fourth. Both teams going full throttle. That’s one of the byproducts of a shot clock. You know it will expire, so you start taking the first good shot available. Love it.
PUN up 63-61, :40 to go. Mahiko swishes a trey from the top, KAIS up 64-63.
Chris Kobayashi drives left from the top, draws a shooting foul. Swishes both shots with :15 left, PUN up 65-64. Kaiser time out, :10.8.
Mahiko loses the ball on a drive. Kalaugher picks it up near the baseline, fouled on the way up, :01.4 left.
He’s short on the first FT. Time out, PUN. Kalaugher makes the second. Relief for the Cougars. PUN calls another time out. Miracle time again? Anyone remember PUN-STL last season?
Long inbounds pass to Jack-Eli Tufono is picked off by Kalaugher, but his prayer shot is after the buzzer. OVERTIME.
Kalaugher has hit three of four FTs so far. KAIS up 68-65 with 2:13 left. Tough matchup for any opposing center. He’s been content to shoot threes most games, but in this situation, driving hard is the right move.
Duke Clemens hits one of two FTs for PUN. Then Kalaugher drives hard again, fouled, hits two FTs, KAIS 70-66.
Kobayashi the veteran drives, fouled, hits two FTs, 1:22 left.
KAIS beats PUN’s fullcourt pressure. Mahiko drives, spin move, layup. Sweet skills. Time out, PUN, 1:03, KAIS leads 72-68.
Arceneaux clutch corner 3, 72-71. Tom misses two foul shots, and Arceneaux is clutch again with a driver and runner over Kalaugher off the glass. PUN up 73-72 with :12 left.
Kaiser pushes upcourt. Mahiko misses a floater, but Kalaugher with the mid-air tip-in at the buzzer. KAISER 74, PUNAHOU 73, final.
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Some photos of folks who give the extra effort for high school basketball.