Despite being every defense’s center of attention, Chanelle Molina still turns into an unstoppable scoring maching and Konawaena keeps winning.
The sophomore sensation poured in 28 points, and the Wildcats pummeled Kamehameha 66-41 in a Big Island Interscholastic Federation girls basketball game Saturday night at Koai‘a Gym.
Ihi Victor and Celena Molina added 12 points each for Division I Kona (7-0), which polished off its tough three-game road trip.
Riana Arima scored 16 points and Casey Poe added 14 points for the Warriors (5-2), who fall farther back for the Division II regular-season title, which includes the league’s first berth to the Hawaii High School Athletic Association state tournament.
Kona played lockdown defense in the first and fourth quarters, outscoring Kamehameha 24-7 in the first period and 17-6 in the final eight minutes.
On Wedensday, the Wildcats traveled to then-unbeaten Honokaa, a tough venue for any road opponent. Turns out it was no problem.
Chanelle Molina scored 19 points and her freshman sister Celena chipped in 13 points as Kona thumped the Dragons 54-41.
Last season, Kamehameha won its second straight Division II state championship while Honokaa was the runner-up.
But Kona’s toughest road test was last Saturday against Hilo at Afook-Chinen Civic Auditorium, where the Vikings frequently double-teamed Chanelle Molina before she had a chance to catch her breath.
In the closing seconds, she made a key assist and her teammate Jasmine Perea provided the winning basket in a thrilling 48-45 victory. Molina, again, led all scorers with a valuable 17 points and four assists.
The five-time defending BIIF champion Wildcats have won their last 62 league games.
Konawaena 24 14 11 17 — 66
Kamehameha 7 17 11 6 — 41
Hilo 51, Ka‘u 9: Alyssa Perreira scored 11 points and Alexis Pana added 10 for the Vikings (5-1).
Sky Kanakaole-Esperon scored four points to lead the Trojans (0-7).
In JV play, Hilo won 62-15.
Ka‘u 1 2 0 6 — 9
Hilo 20 13 8 10 — 51
Honokaa 48, Hawaii Prep 23: Chancis Fernandez burned her old team for 14 points as the Dragons (6-1) held HPA to single-digit points in each quarter.
Ula Brostek and Anna Juan scored eight points each for Ka Makani (3-4), still in fourth place in the Division II standings with the four-team playoffs set for the end of the month.
Honokaa 11 16 12 9 — 48
HPA 6 6 7 4 — 23
Waiakea 66, Kohala 43: The Warriors made quite a statement against the unbeaten Cowgirls as Shaila Apele scored 24 points.
Kryssie Okinaka added 20 points and Kaydee Rapozo had 13 for Waiakea (4-3), which outscored Kohala 21-10 in the second quarter and 22-13 in the final period.
Naai Soloman-Lewis scored 21 points, but no one else reached double-digits for the Cowgirls (5-1), who are now tied with Honokaa in the Division II standings.
In the JV, Waiakea won 46-15.
Kohala 13 10 7 13 — 43
Waiakea 13 21 10 22 — 66
Pahoa 59, Laupahoehoe 16: Vanessa Castro scored 19 points and Erleen Oguma had 11 for the Daggers (1-6).
Kailyn Requelman and Shyla Anderson each had six points for the Seasiders (0-7), who next play Kona on Tuesday.
Keaau 59, Kealakehe 38: Taylor Pocock scored 35 points, including 15 of 24 free throws, to spark the Cougars (4-3).
Ashlyn Cabatbat scored 13 points for the Waveriders (1-6).
In the JV, Kealakehe won 49-14.
Waiakea 3, Honokaa 1: Kylie Robertson, Alison Fuata and Cierra Toledo-Muragin each scored for the Warriors (6-0-1), who still sit in the driver’s seat for the BIIF regular-season title.
Allie Shiraki had the lone goal for the Dragons (4-2), who trail Division II front-runner HPA (6-0-1) but travel to play the four-time defending BIIF champion on Jan. 22.