Spartans open with victory over Trojans
WAILUKU — The Seabury Hall boys basketball team is seeking its 10th Maui Interscholastic League title in a row.
The Spartans got off to a fast start toward that goal with a 70-19 win over St. Anthony on Friday night at War Memorial Gym.
Seabury Hall broke open the game with a 20-0 run in the first half to take a 27-5 lead. Joaquin Donez scored on a breakaway after a nifty pass from Noah Payne to put the lead to 37-7 with 1 minute, 45 seconds left in the first half.
Payne scored a game-high 17 points in the first MIL game he has ever played without his brother, Isaiah Payne, on the Spartans roster. Isaiah Payne, a three-time MIL D-II Player of the Year, is a freshman at Seattle University on a track scholarship.
“Oh yeah, I’ve been waiting for this year for awhile,” Noah Payne said. “It’s a little bit different team. We lost, obviously, Isaiah, but it was just good to get a regular-season game going.”
Big brother had some advice for his younger sibling.
“He was just saying ‘be confident in your shot, don’t be afraid to take the open ones,’ ” Noah Payne said.
The mercy-rule running clock stayed in effect the entire second half with the margin more than 30 points.
The Spartans went 6-8 in nonleague play against a schedule packed with tough opponents.
“We’re looking to just kind of get our rhythm going,” Seabury Hall coach Scott Prather said. “We took some losses in the preseason that were against some good teams, so we kind of got staggered a little bit, but it was nice to come out and just execute, play our game and come out with a victory.”
Early in the game, the Trojans were hanging tough with their six-player roster — Jonathan Vergel de Dios sank a 3-pointer to bring them within 7-5 before the Spartans’ big run.
The Trojans do not have much basketball experience, but coach Kim Kasahara was pleased with his team’s effort all night. The game was the first of any kind this season for St. Anthony.
“Those (Seabury Hall) guys are one of the best teams in the state,” Kasahara said. “My guys played hard, it was good. That was the first organized
basketball game for some of my guys.”
St. Anthony’s Calvin Johnson scored inside, was fouled and completed a 3-point play with 4:29 left in the third quarter to bring the Trojans within 49-11.
John Biegel completed a 3point play midway through the fourth quarter to push the Spartans’ lead to 64-14. Biegel’s next 3-point play gave the Spartans their biggest lead at 70-14.
Kaimana Baker led the Trojans with eight points.
Carl Molinaro scored 15 points, Donez had 12 and Kama Konohia 10 for the Spartans. Robert Collias is at rcollias @mauinews.com
Seabury Hall’s Carl Molinaro goes to the basket against St. Anthony’s Calvin Johnson on Friday at War Memorial Gym.
PHOTO ABOVE: St. Anthony’s Evan Essner (left) and Seabury Hall’s Kama Konohia compete for a second-quarter loose ball Friday. PHOTO BELOW: The Spartans’ Noah Payne follows through on a second-quarter shot.