Kenai boys basketball takes on Kodiak

After Friday’s 46-34 Northern Lights Conference loss to the visiting Kodiak boys, it was clear the Kardinals had to figure out two things for the rematch — how to defend Jemuel Mangalus and how to attack Kodiak’s 1-2-2 zone.

Kenai head coach Ken Felchle said the Kardinals solved both in a 47-38 victory over the Bears on Saturday. The win puts the Kards at 1-5 in the league and 5-10 overall, while Kodiak falls to 1-3 and 3-13.

In the Saturday win, the Kards held Mangalus to four points after he had scored 25 points on Friday. Kenai led 12-5 after one quarter, 20-16 at halftime and 34-24 after three periods. Keith Ivy, who had nine points Friday, led the way with 17 points Saturday. Billy Alcaide had 11 for Kodiak.

Because of his ability to penetrate and set up teammates or get to the foul line, senior guard Mangalus is a tough player for Kodiak boys head coach David Anderson to take off the floor.

Friday night at Kenai Central on Cliff Massie Court, Anderson managed to do just that and it paid off with the victory.

In the previous weekend’s two-game set, Anderson had played Mangalus for all 64 minutes. So Friday, Anderson made it a point to get the 6-foot guard some rest in the third quarter.

Mangalus responded by scoring 14 of his 25 points in the final quarter to wrap up the win.

“We depend on him a lot,” Anderson said. “He’s a great free-throw shooter and he’s getting quicker with the ball.”

Mangalus hit 10 of 12 foul shots in the fourth quarter and 12 of 15 in the game.

With 4 minutes, 9 seconds, left in the game, Ivy completed his own 5-0 run to cut Kodiak’s lead to 30-29 — the closest the Kardinals had been since the start of the second half.

But Mangalus was in control the rest of the way, either working his way to the foul line or hitting cutting teammates for layups.

Marshall Vest, who had all nine of his points in the final quarter for Kenai, knocked down a 3 with 2:41 to play to cut the gap to 33-32, but Mangalus hit a layup, six foul shots and found Brian Caguing for a layup as Kodiak took a 43-32 lead with 1:08 to play.

“We had three defensive possessions in a row where we let them get back door,” Felchle said.

Felchle said the beginning and end of the basketball game were costly to his team.

Kodiak went on a 9-0 run, capped by a jumper from Alcaide, to take a 14-5 lead with 7:09 left in the second quarter.

While Kodiak was able to find some holes in Kenai’s man-to-man defense, the Kards were never quite able to figure out a way to attack the Bears’ 1-2-2 zone, particularly because they were 2 of 11 from 3-point land.

“I was happy with the way we ran that,” Anderson said. “We closed down the middle well. I was worried because they have some players that can penetrate and some good shooters.”

Felchle said Anderson is a master at controlling the pace of the game, and Friday was no exception.

“He does a very good job of deciding how the game is going to be played — what the pace will be and what the score will be,” Felchle said.

The Kards were at their best when they amped up the intensity on defense, forced turnovers and got out on the break before the zone could set up. This type of play pushed Kenai on a 9-0 run, capped by a transition basket from Josh Jackman, that cut Kodiak’s lead to 19-18 heading into halftime.

But the Kards couldn’t keep the momentum going in the third quarter. Kenai forced eight turnovers in the frame, but shot just 1 of 9 from the field. Alcaide, who finished with 11 points, came alive for three 3-pointers in the quarter meaning the Kards would have to overcome a 28-20 deficit heading in the final eight minutes.

“We played a decent game,” Felchle said. “We only gave up 28 points through three quarters. Defensively, that’s great.

“It’s just that on offense, we didn’t get much going.”

Friday boys

Bears 46, Kardinals 34

Kodiak 12 7 9 18 —46

Kenai 5 13 2 14 —34

KODIAK (46) — Mangalus 6 12-15 25, Alcaide 4 0-0 11, Bezona 2 0-4 4, Caguing 2 0-0 4, Osowski 1 0-0 2, Mutch 0 0-0 0. Totals — 15 12-19 46.

KENAI (34) — Theisen 1 0-0 2, Ivy 4 1-1 9, McKee 0 0-0 0, Brazell 1 0-0 3, Tay. Landry 0 0-0 0, Jackman 3 1-1 7, Vest 4 0-0 9, Foree 2 0-0 4, Wortham 0 0-0 0. Totals — 15 2-2 34.

3-point goals — Kodiak 4 (Alcaide 3, Mangalus); Kenai 2 (Brazell, Vest). Team fouls — Kodiak 4, Kenai 15. Fouled out — none.

Saturday boys

Kardinals 47, Bears 38

Kodiak 5 11 8 14 —38

Kenai 12 8 14 13 —47

KODIAK (38) — Mangalus 1 2-6 4, Monge 0 0-0 0, Alcaide 4 0-0 11, Bezona 3 3-4 9, C. Caguing 0 0-0 0, Talai 0 0-0 0, B. Caguing 2 0-0 4, Osowski 0 1-2 1, Mutch 4 0-0 9, Koller 0 0-0 0. Totals — 14 6-12 38.

KENAI CENTRAL (47) — Theisen 2 2-2 7, Ivy 3 9-14 17, McKee 4 0-2 7, Ta. Landry 0 0-0 0, Jackman 4 1-2 9, Vest 2 1-2 5, Foree 0 0-0 0, Wortham 1 0-0 2. Totals — 15 13-22 47.

3-point goals — Kodiak 4 (Alcaide 3, Mutch); Kenai 4 (Ivy 2, Theisen, McKee). Team fouls — Kodiak 19, Kenai 15. Fouled out — Alcaide, Jackman.

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