4-7 May 2016 — the extended weekend concludes the Girls High School Water Polo in the state of Hawai’i with the annual state tournament, the Stanford-Carr Development/ Hawai’i High School Athletic Association (HHSAA) State Championships. First off, let me give recognition to great tournament organization, starting with the host schools, who contributed many folks, and key personnel: Mark Brilhante, Kaleheo Athletic Director, Fred Lee, Kaimuki Athletic Director, Wendell Look,’Iolani Athletic Director, and Daniel Arakaki, University of Hawai’i; secondly, the officials desk staff: Head Timer Chelsey Kekahuna-Kalaukoa, Scorekeepers Corey Fellezs, Kandelle Khimi and Nathan Higa; thirdly the Referees: Keahou Chang, Grace Chen, Mike Klaus, Sydney Lyons, Jimmy Martindale, Danny Pollard, Brendan Shum, Gregg Wong and Michelle Wong. These thanks are echoed from all, but specifically documented from your two announcers, Kelly Kemp and Lee Young-Kingsbury.
Below is the reverse chronological order summary of games for Day 4:
Saturday, State Finals
The final game was opened with much fanfare. Kamehameha Senior Co-Captain Courtney Quiamzon led all attendees with an outstanding rendition of the Star Spangled Banner, then followed that up singing the State song, Hawai’i Pono ‘I.
Courtney Quiamzon sings prior to the Championhip Finals.
Game 18, Championship Game, #1 Punahou 9-1 over KS-Kapalama
The two tournament undefeated teams lined up for introductions.
Punahou, dark caps, faces Kamehameha-Kapalama, white caps, in Gold Medal game.
Kam School-Kapalama put up a great defense in the first half, led by steals from Payton Bosque, Keylee Leong and La’akea Dedrick, along with field blocks by Leong and Kaylen Nitahara, only to fall behind Punahou 4-0 at the half. And, despite the 11 saves and 2 steals in stellar goalkeeping from Jordan Ehara, Punahou outscored Kam 5-1 in the second half behind Marissa Anne Miller and Natassia Dunn, 3 each, Saki Migliorato, 2, and Micaela Kauhane. Goalkeeper Emalia Eichelberger was again phenomenal — only one sneaking in — with 6 blocks, 1 assist to counterattacking Miller.
Punahou’s Micaela Kauhane rears to shoot.
Interviewing the ‘three amigos’ Seniors — Dunn, Eichelberger, Migliorato — they exclaimed (at post-game party) that “were glad it’s over (successfully with 4 state titles/undefeated at state tournament in 4 years)!” and “we’re really looking forward to college! (UCLA, Stanford, Georgetown Universities, respectively)!” Congratulations, ladies, and best wishes for college! (b~note: my daughter, UCLA alum/club polo player Chelsea, and I were fortunate to attend not only the games, but the celebration dinner afterwards…)
- Punahou 2-2-4-1 = 9
- KS-Kapalama 0-0-1-0 = 1
Nine-consecutive State Championship winning Coach Ken Smith addresses Punahou players.
Game 17, 3rd Place Game, #2 Kahuku 8-5 against Roosevelt
Ava Countryman scores on backhand, one of her 4 goals.
For the second time in two weeks, Kahuku outlasted arch-rival Roosevelt to best their annual series, 2 out of 3. (b~note: Roosevelt won the regular season game and championship earlier, but Kahuku won the OIA Championship finals tournament game.)
Kahuku took the early lead with steals from Delilah Tea and Sophia Wilson leading to counterattack goals by Ava Countryman and Tea, respectively. In the second quarter, Roosevelt tied the game twice, first at 2-2, as Rayna Miranda was assisted by Sarah Yasuda followed by Laura Young being assisted by Taylor Brooks; Tea had another steal with an assist to Wilson for a short-lived lead, then April Gomes tied up the game with an outside shot, again short-lived, as Kahuku Captain India Pyzel found Keana Kunz with a picture perfect pass for Kunz’ only goal on a beautifully executed lob goal.
In the second half, Kahuku blew the game open with three successive counterattacks, led by Pyzel, 4 total assists, Countryman and Isabella Walker, before Countryman finished the scoring with a crisp backhand shot.
- Kahuku 2-2-3-1 = 8
- Roosevelt 0-3-0-2 = 5
Goalkeeper Noa Cravens had 7 saves and 2 steals in a Hawaii State Bronze Medal triumph for the Kahuku Red Raiders.
Game 16, 5th Place Game, KS-Hawaii 11-10 versus Lahainaluna (Overtime)
Kam School-Hawaii fell behind early to the Lunas, but bounced back in the second quarter to tie 4-4 at half and 10-10 at regulation. High scorer for Kam (and game MVP) was Katelynn Kubo, 5 goals 4 steals 2 draws 1 field block, with Alyssa Pelanca, 4 goals, Lahela Rosario, Trinity Alameda, 1 goal each.
Just one goal behind was Lahainaluna, with goals from Julia Bianco and Lalelei Mataafa, 3 each, and Nikki Zamani and Alicia Wintermeyer, 2 each.
- KS-Hawaii 0-4-4-2-1 = 11
- Lahainaluna 3-1-4-2-0 = 10
Kamehameha’s Alyssa Pelanca shoots the game-winning penalty in OT.
Game 15, Consolation Championship, Hawaii Prep defeated Kalani, 5-3
HPA takes a time out.
In a tightly contested match at the start of Finals Day, the Hawaii Preparatory Academy hung on to upset favored Kalani High School in this low-scoring game.
For the winners, Goalie Ala Taylor had 6 saves and Taylor Doherty had 3 steals and a field block, Erin Evans, 3 steals, Kira Parker, 2 steals, Co-Capt Louisa Duggan, 2 steals, and Co-Capt Elizabeth Jim, 1 steal on defense — but their real story was extra-player advantages. Doherty, Evans, Duggan and Janelle Laros drew critical ejections — and the result was 3 goals and 2 assists for Laros, 1 goal and 2 assists for Duggan, and 1 goal for Doherty to go with her winning all four sprints!
On the losing side, Co-Captain Seniors Erika Kim, 2 goals 1 field block, and Lisa Namatame, 1 goal 1 assist 1 steal, had fine games on offense, but it just wasn’t enough firepower. As for Kalani defense, Junior Goalkeeper Mika O’Shea had a phenomenal game, 16 saves, 2 steals and 1 assist.
- HPA 1-2-0-2 = 5
- Kalani 1-1-0-1 = 3
Kalani’s Mika O’Shea makes a spectacular save. Photos by Chelsea Kemp