KEAAU – At first glance, Kamehameha senior left-hander Tai Atkins numbers didnt look particularly dominant: 5 2/3 innings, three runs and nine strikeouts with one walk and three hit batters.
HILO – Makua Lani played to its strength balanced firepower while Hawaii Prep couldnt overcome its season-long weakness ball-control in an unlikely BIIF Division II championship, one team deep in tradition and the other a bunch of hard-working greenhorns.
Only the underdogs saw this one coming.
Once Makua Lani and Hawaii Prep stopped beating themselves, order was restored to the BIIF Division II volleyball universe.
It was gold-collecting day, otherwise known as the BIIF individual championships where Waiakea senior Raelyn Ai-Yoneda and Hilo senior Hula Kahookaulana stamped their legacies as four-time champs.
PAHOA Its been a remarkable building process on the volleyball court for Makua Lani, which didnt have a team two years ago.
Last season, Chanelle Hwang had a fine freshman golf season for Hilo with a fifth place finish at the BIIF championships.
UH-Hilo has won eight games straight on the diamond, not quite halfway to the school record of 19 games in a row, which was set in 1982.
KEAAU Hawaii Preps ball-control woke up just in time against Christian Liberty for a volleyball battle with a nice little prize on the line.
Last year, the UH-Hilo mens tennis team produced a landmark season with a first-round loss at the NCAA Division II championships, a shocking achievement considering Hawaii Pacific is seen as the states preeminent program.
Alexis Pana had the time of her life at Central Washington, where she was an All-GNAC first-team pick and played with her sister Aliyah Pana, who was in her last year of eligibility and served as a blanket of comfort.
KEAAU – Hawaii Prep is still rounding into volleyball shape with just a few matches left to turn into a finished product.
As a coachs son and perpetual gym rat, Kiai Apele is always around a basketball, working on his game and sharpening the skills that opponents dont see until its too late.
Moms advice worked out for the best for Hilo hitting machine Kaala Deitch, who had a monster performance on Saturday against Kamehameha in a battle of volleyball unbeatens.
Kamehamehas winning streak has followed a distinctive pattern: Brooke Baptiste enters the pitching circle and doesnt lose and someone from the deep lineup swings a mighty bat.
The gold bar was set over a decade ago, and the journey was laid out simply for Waiakea and Kelsie Imai, whose sisters Kirsty and Kamie, were on the schools last BIIF championship team in 2008.
KEAAU – Kamau Makaike is a perfect example of Kamehamehas hit smart strategy. He can hit hard or take something off his fastball. And he was simply efficient against Waiakea, which often swung for the fences.
Brandyn Lee-Lehano has turned into UH-Hilos workhorse relief pitcher, throwing another three-inning stint in a sweep against Academy of Art, which also featured the return of the teams ace, boosting the staffs depth.
It looked like a mismatch on the volleyball court with Hilo in first place at 6-0 and Keaau in last at 0-6.