OIA Girls Basketball
Kaiser outlasts Roosevelt to remain lone unbeaten in OIA East play


  



Tue, Jan 25, 2022 @ Kaiser


F/OT 1 2 3 4 OT  
Roosevelt (11-3, 11-4) 6 16228254
Kaiser (12-2, 12-3) 9 13 13 17658
A. Maae 23 pts  7/11 FTs
M. Richardson 19 pts  1 3pm  0/1 FTs
A. Maae 11 tot  3 off  8 def
M. Richardson 9 tot  2 off  7 def

On Senior Night at Kaiser Gymnasium, it was a pair of underclassmen that ultimately stole the game time spotlight.

Kaiser sophomore Alexus Maae poured in 23 points, while Roosevelt freshman Makelah Richardson countered with 19 points of her own, as a game featuring two unbeaten teams needed overtime to settle, and saw the home team Cougars come away with a gritty 58-54 win.

"She's a gift, we're so blessed to have her," said senior Dacee Tsue of Maae. "She's really stepped up her game this year and really confident which I really appreciate."

Maae added 11 rebounds and four steals in the win, while Richardson had nine boards of her own to go along with five blocks and two assists.

With under forty seconds to play in regulation, a missed free throw by the Rough Riders set up a chance for the Cougars to take the lead or tie, and Tsue delivered for Kaiser, catching an inbounds pass near the top of the circle and slicing her way into the paint for a running float shot that rattled off the iron and into the cylinder to knot the game at 52-all.

In the overtime period, Kaiser clutched up when it counted most.

Following a missed shot by the Rough Riders, Maae grabbed a rebound and took the ball back the length of the court powering down the lane for a contested layup that found its way just over the cylinder, where it rattled around briefly before settling through.

Greg Yamamoto | SL    Purchase image

Then with the lead in hand, Kaiser opted to take some air out of the basketball, where it seemed Roosevelt was content to try and force a turnover rather than commit the immediate foul. Eventually, Roosevelt put Tsue at the line with 1:07 to go in the overtime period and the senior delivered at the line, calmly knocking down both free throws to push the margin to 56-52.

"It was a lot of pressure but we dedicate a part of every practice to just doing free throws, and for me I just take my time I just gather myself and it really helps," remarked Tsue.

Tiana Burgess scored a bucket to get the margin back to just a deuce with 46 ticks left, but on the ensuing possession, Roosevelt again opted to not foul until about 13 seconds left in the game, putting Maae on the line with a chance to ice it.

And much like her senior teammate did, Maae clutched up, sinking both attempts to ultimately put the game away for the home team.

In the first half, Kaiser's full court press proved to be disruptive, keeping Roosevelt off-balance offensively for much of the half.

The helter skelter nature of the first two quarters costed the Rough Riders in the foul department, where two of their players notched three fouls and two others a pair of personals, but the Cougars also suffered in the foul trouble deparment due to the frantic pace as well, with two players of their own with three first half fouls as well.

Greg Yamamoto | SL    Purchase image

Those accumulated fouls, 22 combined in the first half, made the pace of the second half decidely more deliberate, or at the very least racheted back some of the full court pressure that was applied previous, particularly on the part of Kaiser.

Operating more in the half court seemed to play in Richardson's favor, and she thrived scoring 13 points in the third quarter alone.

Being down as many as nine points heading in the fourth forced Kaiser's hand somewhat, but seemingly it was exactly what the doctor ordered, as the pace again quickened and the lead slowly dwindled, with a key stretch at the under five minute mark that saw the Cougars bookend six straight free throws around a Jasey Morikawa triple.

That 9-0 run not only tied the game at 46-all, but was clearly the momentum changer that powered Kaiser in the overtime as well.

"Roosevelt was a tough battle, they were the strongest team we've competed against (this year)," said Tsue.

Tsue (11 points, four rebounds, three assists) and Kimura (4 points, 5 steals, 3 assists) both had fine all-around games, and Morikawa scored a game-high nine points off the bench.

Roosevelt starters accounted for all but six of the teams points. Burgess chipped in 10 points, four rebounds and three steals, while Makayla Furuto (9 points, 5 boards, 2 assists) and Kamryn Layug-Delovio (9 points, 6 boards, 2 assists) both nearly reached double digits as well.

A key omission to note among the starters for the Rough Riders was guard Melody Furuto, who was not dressed for the contest.

Kaiser closes out the regular season with a road game against Moanalua Thursday, while Roosevelt finished the regular season with a 10-1 mark.





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