Lunas take second win over JV boys basketball


Photo by Daisy Draper

Keomaikalani Chun fights his way to the hope past a Luna double team Nov. 23 at Kaʻulaheanuiokamoku. Lāhainaluna won 49-38.

By Daisy Draper, staff writer

Lāhainaluna played a consistent game and won 49-38 against the KSM junior varsity boys basketball team yesterday at Ka’ulaheanuiokamoku Gymnasium.

Last night’s result was an improvement over the Warriors’ last loss by 27 points against the Lunas.

The difference in scores during last night’s game ranged from as few as 2 points to a high of 15 points, but the Lunas ended each quarter with a solid lead of 11 or 12 points.

The Kamehameha Maui JV boys have had to learn to coalesce quickly, with many of the athletes just transitioning from the fall football season. In their first game, they lost by 35 points, but they have been improving.

Coach Kaeo “Mo” Lau Hee said, “Our strengths are our willingness to never quit and stay in the game and bring intensity throughout the game.”

Since those first games, they’ve lost four of their last five games by 1-11 points.

Before this season, this group of boys had never been together as a team, although they’d all played before in clubs — just not on the same teams. Learning to play cohesively has been one of their biggest challenges.

“I just want to see our team come together and hopefully, eventually, win a game. We’ve been slowly progressing and getting better and better,” sophomore Keiran Kauka said.

Kauka, sophomore guard, was the leading scorer for the Warriors with a total of 13 points, but there were many missed scoring opportunities.

“Our weaknesses are our turnovers and free throw shooting,” Coach Lau Hee said.

KSM only scored on 38% of their 32 free throws compared to the Lunas who sank 50% of their 14.

Both teams had a player who fouled out — Kalalani Kaaikala-Caban for the Lunas and Kaupena Morando for the Warriors.

In the midst of all the fouls, there was only one injury. Pono Durate fell while trying to push through two defenders. He landed hard and smacked his back and head on the court during the third quarter. He sat out the rest of the game, but Coach Lau Hee believed he would be fine and will return to the court soon.

The JV team has four games left in their season. They play the Baldwin Bears on Tuesday, Dec. 3, at home. It should be an exciting game, as the Warrior lost by only one point in their last match-up, Nov. 9, in the Maui High preseason tournament.