SUPER(FRESH)MAN: Gilmore’s 28 leads Mustangs to Exciting Win at Farrington
By: Paul Brecht
KALIHI — Right from the tip-off, the energy at Farrington High School was electric.
The Kalaheo Mustangs (9-11, 5-4 OIA East) picked up a huge win over the Farrington Governors (2-9, 2-7 OIA East), as Mustangs guard CJ Bostic calmly knocked down a pair of free throws with just over six seconds remaining to lift the visitors, 64-63.
It was a back-and-forth affair all Wednesday evening, as each team had a counter to a run the other was having. Kalaheo took an early lead to open the first quarter, before Farrington used its full court press to knot it up at 12-12 to end the opening frame.
The press sped the game up on both ends, as each team found themselves playing at a speed that forced turnovers and bad shots. The frantic pace caused transition layups to reign supreme, much to the delight of Farrington and the dismay of Kalaheo.
Farrington found themselves getting open looks on fast break chances and speeding up a talented Kalaheo team into some unforced errors. While mistakes plagued the Mustangs in the second quarter, the visitors found themselves down just one, 26-25, going into the locker rooms.
The Farrington first-half attack was led by sophomore Ernest Rodriguez, whose on-court chemistry with senior Gerald Gallardo was on display. The two guards ran wild in transition, looking for each other on the break. The pair combined for 14 of the 26 first-half Governors points.
It was superstar freshman Jaron Gilmore who led the Mustangs’ charge through the night, as the 6’2 freshman guard knifed his way through the Farrington press all evening. When Gilmore couldn’t finish around the rim, it was energetic junior forward Toa Tevaga making his presence known. The 6’3 springy reserve snatched offensive rebound after offensive rebound and chipped in his own personal 6-0 run for the Mustangs in the second quarter.
Gilmore exploded in the third quarter, chipping in 11 of his 28 total points in the frame. The visiting Mustangs, fighting for their playoff lives, needed every bit of the performance from the freshman.
Gilmore opened his second half scoring with a triple, added a trio of layups to go along with a 2/4 performance from the free throw line. While Kalaheo got a few baskets from the supporting cast, it was the guard who kept the Mustangs within striking distance heading into the fourth quarter.
Farrington’s dynamic guard duo kept up the attack in the third quarter, scoring 11 of the team’s 18 points to keep the OIA Division 2 school knotted up at 44 with OIA Division 1 Kalaheo for a winner-take-all final quarter.
The teams continued to throw metaphorical punches in the final frame, as each school found the lead only to lose in again moments later. In the end, the heroics of Gilmore and sophomore guard CJ Bostic proved to be too much for Farrington.
Gilmore contributed seven points in the fourth, knocking down his second triple of the night. Bostic scored 11 of his 18 points on the night in the final quarter, going a perfect 4-4 from the line in the waning moments of the game to put it on ice and lead the Mustangs to victory, 64-63.
Farrington, who has now lost two straight heartbreakers, was led by Ernest Rodriguez’s 16 points. Gerald Gallardo chipped in 15 in the losing effort, while Jacob Lorenzo scored 12 points for the Governors.
Kalaheo was led by Gilmore’s game-high 28 points, 18 of which came in the second half. Bostic scored 18 points for the visitors, and Toa Tevaga ended the night with 8 points for the Mustangs.
Farrington, who has already clinched a playoff spot, looks to get back on track Saturday, January 21 when they travel to Moanalua for the team’s regular season finale. Kalaheo hosts Kalani on January 21, trying to extend the team’s winning streak to four games.