Iolani Classic Semifinals

Montverde Eagles 64 – Mount Vernon Knights 37

Photo by Brien Ing, Courtesy of Scoring Live

After a slow start in which Montverde trailed Mount Vernon 28-26 at halftime, the Eagles exploded in the second half and held the Knights to nine points in the final two quarters.

Montverde head coach Kevin Sutton was very pleased with his team’s performance. “We did a tremendous job on defense,” he said. “To hold a great team like that to nine points in the second half speaks volumes about our defense.”

One key defensive adjustment Sutton made in the second half was shifting guard DeForest Carter onto Mount Vernon’s Jabarie Hinds. After 11 points in the first half, Hinds was limited to one field goal in the second half to finish with 13 points.

“DeForest is stronger and more experienced than Kasey Hill. He (DeForest) was the sixth man last year on a team that finished 23-5,” said Sutton. “I thought his experience would be better suited to defend Mount Vernon’s top guard.”

The Eagles held a distinct size advantage, and utilized their strength effectively in the second half by consistently going inside. 6’8″ Harvard-bound forward, Steve Missi, continued his dominant play down low, finishing with 18 points to lead all scorers. Sutton said Missi holds a 3.9 GPA; impressive, to say the least.

3-point specialist Patricio Garino found his stroke after making zero 3-pointers versus Lexington Catholic. Garino went 5/10 on 3-pointers, and finished with 17 points. Sutton said, “Our shooters need to shoot. The looks are the same; they’ll always be there. The open looks they had this game were there last game.”

The distinct contrast between the two halves was not an isolated incident for Montverde. “We’re a much better second half team. We always try to start the game off faster but our tendency is to be a slow-starting team,” Sutton said. “Tomorrow versus Oak Hill, that can’t happen. We need to make adjustments. We’ll be in trouble if we can’t get started quickly.”

The most exciting individual matchup will be between Oak Hill’s brilliant point guard, Quinn Cook, and Montverde’s sensational sophomore point guard, Kasey Hill. Cook and Hill are both five-star prospects who have played well throughout the tournament.

Hill was an assists machine against Mount Vernon; he was mature beyond his years with his decision-making and control. “He’s a fantastic player, and he has been all year long,” said Sutton. “He did as well a job of managing the game as he could have. He was very focused all day.”

The Eagles will play Oak Hill on Tuesday night at 8:00pm in the championship game. The Knights will face Dr. Phillips at 6:30pm for third place.

Please visit for tournament photo galleries.

Oak Hill Warriors 81 – Dr. Phillips Panthers 51

Photo by Brien Ing, Courtesy of Scoring Live

Oak Hill head coach Steve Smith had one goal, and that was to stop Dr. Phillips point guard Shane Larkin. Smith used seven different defenses, by his own account, including five different zones.

“I have a lot of respect for Larkin, so we tried to get the ball out of his hands,” Smith said. “We kept changing our defense. Larkin was never able to get into rhythm.”

Smith was unhappy with how the Warriors played on Saturday night against Iolani. “They weren’t in it versus Iolani,” he said. “Tonight, they were more alert, defensively. They were ready to play.”

Oak Hill jumped out to an early 21-7 lead after the first quarter, and never looked back. The Warriors held the Panthers to 33% shooting (21/64 field goals) while shooting 48% (33/69 field goals) themselves.

Larkin never appeared fully comfortable against the longer and bigger Warriors. He only had five points in the first half, and finished with 12. Although he showed flashes of brilliance, his team gave him no offensive support; the Panthers’ big men missed easy layups from good feeds by Larkin throughout the game.

Oak Hill guard Keith Hornsby led all scorers with 22 points, including four 3-pointers. Hornsby was disappointed with his 6-point performance against Iolani on Saturday, so Smith was happy to see Hornsby bounce back.

However, a scary moment occurred in the fourth quarter when a Dr. Phillips player dove for the ball but landed on top of Hornsby’s right ankle instead. Hornsby was writhing in pain for a few minutes, and eventually limped off the court.

I spoke to him after the game; he said he was in a lot of pain, and described it as a “big, dull pain.” He was able to move his toes around, but the injury was to the top of his foot. When asked if he thought he could play tomorrow, he said, “I sure hope so.”

At the time, no one knew for certain whether it was a fracture, strain, or sprain. Getting x-rays was also a possibility, depending on how the ankle felt later. Hornsby said he would test the foot out and see what kind of pressure he could put on it.

Losing Hornsby would be a big blow to the Warriors. They will play the USA Today No. 25-ranked Montverde Eagles tomorrow night at 8pm in the Iolani Classic Championship game. Dr. Phillips will play Mount Vernon at 6:30pm for third place.

Please visit for tournament photo galleries.

Lexington Catholic Knights 83 – Mason County Royals 59

Photo by Gregory Yamamoto, Courtesy of Scoring Live

Both teams play a similar style of basketball: they’re quick, scrappy, and like to press and trap. Lexington Catholic’s press was much more effective, however. The Knights forced 17 Mason County turnovers while only turning the ball over nine times.

For the second game in a row, Mason County’s 6’9″ forward, Treg Setty, had zero rebounds in the first half. As a whole, Lexington Catholic outrebounded Mason County 30-21.

The Knights shot 56% on 31/55 shooting, including 10/20 3-pointers. Scott Schuette, who has been hot from beyond the arc throughout the tournament, finished with 17 points, including 4/9 from 3-point range. Kentucky baseball commit Taylor Martin continued his impressive play with an all-around game consisting of 17 points on 8/10 shooting, 8 rebounds, and 5 assists.

Tyler Black provided much-needed physicality and athleticism for the Royals; he led all scorers with 26 points.

Lexington Catholic will play Wheeler tomorrow at 5:00pm for fifth place while Mason County will face host Iolani at 3:30pm for seventh place.

Please visit for tournament photo galleries.

Wheeler Wildcats 73 – Iolani Raiders 50

Photo by Gregory Yamamoto, Courtesy of Scoring Live

Iolani came into the game wanting to slow down the pace. In the first quarter, the strategy worked well as the Raiders held the Wildcats to just 12 points, and only trailed by two.

However, turnovers in the second quarter led to numerous fast break buckets for the Wildcats. As a result, the tempo of the game quickened, which greatly favored Wheeler.

Iolani, known for having a good press-breaker, was bothered by the Wildcats’ full-court press and traps. Wheeler dictated the tempo in the second quarter, and outscored Iolani 16-6 to lead 28-16 at halftime.

The second half was all Wheeler as Iolani consistently missed open shots. 6’6″ junior forward Charles Mitchell was unstoppable inside; he finished with 27 points to lead all scorers. Mitchell is slowly establishing himself as one of the most outstanding players in the tournament.

The Wildcats will play the winner of the Lexington Catholic vs. Mason County game for fifth place tomorrow at 5:00pm. The Raiders will play the loser of the game for seventh place at 3:30pm.

Please visit for tournament photo galleries.

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