Punahou’s size overwhelms Warriors

March 4, 2010, 7:45 AM HST · Updated March 4, 7:45 AM
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By Fred Guzman

MauiNow.com

Kamehameha-Maui hung in there for a while. In fact, the Warriors trailed by only four points, at 24-20, following Blake Lau’s 3-pointer a minute into the second half.

But the outside shots stopped dropping for the Warriors after that and Punahou’s superior size became an insurmountable factor as DeForest Buckner took control of the paint with 12 points, 17 rebounds and five blocks .

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As a result, the Buffanblu steadily pulled away, opening up a 52-30 lead en route to a 59-45 victory in Wednesday night’s opening round of the state high school Division-I boy’s basketball tournament.

Kekoa Turberville had a big game for Kamehameha-Maui, registering 19 points, seven rebounds and four assistrs in the loss, which relegated to the consolation bracket and a 3 p.m. game today at McKinley High against Campbell, which lost 67-53 to Kamehameha-Kapalama.

The two MIL champions open their bids Thursday, each playing at 5 p.m.

In a D-I game at Radford High, fourth-seeded Lahainaluna faces a Kahuku team that advanced with a 61-56 win over Waiakea. The quarterfinal showdown will be carried live on Maui’s ESPN 550 and espn550.com.

In a D-II contest at Kalani High, second-seeded Seabury Hall, which went unbeaten during its MIL campaign, tangles with Academy of the Pacific.

In Wednesday’s other D-I matchup: Mililani defeated Farrington 63-51.

UH ROUNDUPL After closing out an extended homestand with a pair of impressive victories against BYU, the eighth-ranked University of Hawaii men’s volleyball team has embarked on a key road trip.

The Rainbows play third-ranked Cal State Northridge Friday and Saturday and follow that up with matches at USC on Monday and Tuesday. The Trojans were runners-up in last year’s NCAA tournament.

The Rainbow Wahine basketball team is in the midst of an nine-day layoff before closing out the regular season at New Mexico State on Friday night.

But UH managed to extend its season Wednesday night despite not playing a game. Thanks to Fresno State’s 83-47 rout of San Jose State, the Rainbow Wahine were assured of a berth in next week’s WAC tournament in Reno.

UH takes marks of 10-18 overall and 4-11 in the conference into its game against the Aggies, with the winner earning the seventh seed and the loser the eighth, and having to play against regular-season champion Fresno State, which closed out the WAC campaign with a 16-0 mark and is 25-5 overall.

The UH men, meantime, can clinch at WAC tournament berth by winning at Boise State Thursday. But that could be easier said than done. The Bows are 0-7 on the road this season.

COLLEGE HOOPS: Those of us who saw Maryland during the Maui Invitational Tournament in late November watched a team with a lot of promise but some obvious flaws. Apparently, the Terrapins have sorted out those areas of weakness as the college basketball season has progressed. Last night, No. 22 Maryland rode a 20-point performance by senior gurd Greivis Vasquez, including a clutch basket with 37 seconds left, for a 79-72 victory over visiting No. 4 Duke to gain a tie with the Blue Devils for first place in the ACC standings. … Top-ranked Kansas clinched its sixth straight Big 12 title last night by defeating visiting No. 5 Kansas State 82-65.

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