Between the manic back-and-forth pace and the frenzied atmosphere in Kapaau, Hawaii Prep boys basketball coach Fred Wawner couldn’t quite remember how the fourth quarter and overtime unfolded in its totality.
Wawner just knows that, somehow, Ka Makani got it done.
“We just got a few stops,” Wawner said, recalling HPA’s 70-66 overtime victory Tuesday night against Kohala.
In a potential BIIF Division II championship preview, Cowboys speed trumped Hawaii Prep height for much of the night, except in key spots.
Valentinas Ulinas, a 6-foot-5 junior forward, scored 24 points and Matija Vitorovic, a 6-4 guard, added, 18 as Ka Makani (3-0) remained one of two undefeated BIIF teams and handed the Cowboys (3-1) their first loss in a seesaw affair.
“For most of the game, they were on the attack and our height was not an advantage,” Wawner said. “Their pressure really gave us problems. In overtime, we were able to play a little more to our pace.”
HPA, the defending BIIF D-II champ, trailed by two at the half and took a two-point lead into the fourth quarter.
Freshman O’Shen Cazimero led Kohala with 20 points and Koby Agbayani scored 12.
The teams are only members of Division II with winning records, and Wawner looked forward to potentially seeing the Cowboys again, though not on their home court.
As expected, Kohala fans were ready to for a visit from Ka Makani.
“It was a great atmosphere,” Wawner said. “What a town. Unbelievable, the place was electric.”
While the Cazimero-led Cowboys looked primed to contend for their first state tournament berth since 2015, Wawner said HPA grew because of the experience.
“We had to handle some adversity and a really tough environment,” he said. “They put a lot of (defensive) pressure on you, and to be able to stay connected and be able to respond, that definitely shows something.”
St. Joseph 48
The Wildcats (4-1) got back in the win column on Wednesday with a win over the visiting Cardinals, putting up a season-high offensive output in the victory.
Aldrin Gadot had 22 for Konawaena, with Ethan Neru adding 18.
Dylan Costales netted 13 for the Cardinals, with Nathan Faletoi close behind with 12.