Seto gives last big performance, bids farewell to team

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Photo by Mehana Lee

Senior Jaylyn Seto receives flowers for her senior night after the Kamehameha Schools Maui girls basketball team took on opponents King Kekaulike High School on Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013, at Ka'ulaheanuiokamoku. Warriors lost the game, 50-20.

By Mehana Lee, news editor

Jaylyn Seto, the only senior player on the girls Kamehameha Schools Maui basketball team, played her last game on Thursday, January 17, 2013, at Ka’ulaheanuiokamoku against King Kekaulike High School.

The Maui Warriors lost the game 50-20.

Head Coach David NeSmith said she was like the “team mother,” and everyone looked up to her as a player and person.

Seto had a passion for basketball ever since she was five, and continued to play during her freshman and sophomore years. She took her junior season off after giving birth to her daughter, but continued her career during this, her senior year.

“I’m so proud of her [being a] single parent balancing school, child, and her love of basketball,” said Ms. Jay-R Kaawa, academies principal.

Seto said it would not be possible without the support of her family.

“I have a good support system,” she said.

After three years of playing basketball at Kamehameha Schools Maui, Seto said her good-bye as she took her last shot to the hoop, a simple layup that went in on the first try. The crowd and her teammates cheered as the ball swooshed through the rim.

“What she brought to the team was balance…she came with some new life experiences. I think that coming back [to basketball] was an awesome feeling for her. That alone was good for our team,” Coach NeSmith said.

As for the night against opponents Nā Ali’i, the Maui Warriors were hampered by the loss of injured sophomore Jayden-Rose Almeida, who is a dynamo as a guard. The Warriors were persistent and aggressive, but in the end, they were unable to move the ball effectively throughout the game, and steals opened up a wide lead for King Kekaulike.

In the first quarter, both teams struggled to put the ball in the basket. Kamehameha junior Ne’ula Aarona was the first to score, but those were the only KSM points on the scoreboard for the first quarter. Nā Ali’i was in the lead early, 9-2.

Junior Ashley Tanoue-Singson and Aarona both scored in the second quarter, which ended with Nā Ali’i still in the lead, 27-8.

The Maui Warriors started to gain momentum in the third quarter. They made five successful free throws out of nine, but those were the only points in the third quarter, which ended 37-13.

Between junior Tatiana Medeiros’ goal, two out of three successful free throws, and freshman Rebeka Revelle’s three-pointer, the Warriors added seven more points, and the game ended quickly with Nā Ali’i winning, 50-20.

Although the Maui Warriors were unable to keep up with Na Ali’i, they played with determination with seconds left on the clock.

This was the Maui Warriors last Maui Interscholastic League game of the season, winning one game of the season.

Despite the team’s challenges, Coach NeSmith feels very proud of his team and commends them for their growth as players.

“We started off as a really rough team…but we grew as a team throughout the whole season,” Coach NeSmith said.

The girls will play together at least one last time, though, when they play in the MIL tournament next Wednesday, Jan. 23.