Remembering The Best West Sports Moments Of The Year

The evidence of Campbell’s dominant run through OIA baseball was overwhelming last spring, as displayed in the league title game April 27 at Hans L’Orange Park, where the Sabers defeated a good Mililani team 13-3 for their first title since 1995.

Behind fleet-footed Alii Pedrina and stellar pitching by Dorrien Villanueva-Hermosura, Campbell took a 9-1 lead and control of the game in the process. Pedrina was 1-for-2 from the plate with three runs scored and three RBI, which included a stolen base and three hit-by-pitches. Villanueva-Hermosura went five and 2/3 innings, allowing three runs on five hits, striking out five and walking two on the day.

Campbell’s OIA title earned it the No. 3 seed for the Division I state baseball tournament. The Sabers posted an impressive 5-1 win over Maui High in the quarterfinals before dropping a heartbreaking 2-1 loss to eventual state champion Mid-Pac in the semifinals. Campbell finished its incredible season at 15-2 overall. Any discussion of the top prep sports stories for 2013 has to begin with the Saber baseball team. A glance at some of the other memorable stories from West Oahu follows.

Pearl City boys bowlers make history

The Pearl City boys bowling team approached its 2013 season as if it was a group searching for its first state title, rather than an unprecedented fourth in a row. That mindset made a difference for the Chargers, who delivered, taking the state bowling championship at Hickam Nov. 1.

“They never stopped (working) and kept their minds intact the whole season,” said head coach James Hayashi.

The Chargers boasted the individual state champion in Nicholas Azumi (1,905) and tournament runner-up Ken Hayase-Fong (1,858). Azumi also took first in the OIA, while Hayase-Fong took second in the league.

Pearl City also got stellar performances out of Keenan Kihara (seventh), Kristopher Yadao (eighth), Ryan Kajihiro (13th) and Imi Nakamura (16th), giving the team six bowlers among the top 20 finishers.

Campbell boys wrestling team takes OIA title

After near misses the past two seasons, the Campbell boys wrestling team left no doubt it was the premier OIA team of 2013, claiming the league title by a significant margin over the competition at Leilehua’s gym Feb. 23.

The Sabers, who also won the title in 2010, had four individual wrestlers win their weight classes to run away with the team competition. Campbell’s output of 226.5 points was more than enough to beat West rival Pearl City (149.5) and the rest of the field.

Campbell softball team wins OIA title

Summer Palipti pitched a near-perfect game, and Kawehi Kahana provided much of the offensive output needed as Campbell defeated Kapolei 10-0 in the OIA Red championship game April 20 at Patsy T. Mink Central Oahu Regional Park.

The win gave Campbell its third consecutive league crown and fifth in school history. Palipti allowed no hits and gave up just one walk in five innings of work. Kahana, a junior third baseman, contributed a tworun home run in the second inning and a grand slam in the fourth.

Campbell followed up the OIA tourney by advancing to the semifinals of the state softball championships before losing to eventual state champ Punahou. The Sabers rebounded nicely to win the third-place game over Moanalua and finished their season 12-6 overall under head coach Shag Hermosura.

Campbell football team make semifinals in DI state tournament

Quarterback Isaac Hurd accounted for five of his team’s six touchdowns to lead Campbell to a 42-27 win over Hilo in the first round of the Division I football state championships Nov. 9. A crowd of 1,500 fans at Keaau’s Cougar Stadium on Hawaii island saw the Sabers end the Vikings’ nine-game win streak.

Hurd completed 27 of 36 pass attempts without an interception to seven different receivers and accounted for 400 total yards. He threw second-quarter scoring strikes of 38 and 11 yards to Amosa Amosa Jr. and added touch-down passes of 23 and 39 yards in the second half.

The win lifted Campbell into the semifinals of the state tournament, where it was eliminated by Mililani. Hurd later was named Offensive Player of the Year in the West after leading the Sabers to a 9-4 overall record.

Pearl City girls bowling team wins third straight state title

Not to be outdone by their male counterparts at Pearl City, the girls bowling team closed out an amazing season of their own Nov. 1 when they captured the state bowling crown at Hickam Bowling Center. They were led by sophomore Chelsi Morishige, whose total pin-fall of 1,747 earned her the individual state title. Pearl City also was paced by big tournament performances from Kylie Malilay (sixth with 1,576), Ashlyn-Rae Castro (11th with 1,559), Kristin Frost (14th with 1,535) and Sasha Calistro-Nomura (41st with 1,373).

Kapolei water polo team battles Kahuku in OIA title game

The Kapolei water polo team was only a few plays away from defeating state power Kahuku in the OIA title game April 27 at Central Oahu Regional Park. The Lady Hurricanes dropped a tough 6-4 decision, but followed up the OIA tournament with an equally impressive run at the 2013 state girls water polo championships, posting wins over Moanalua and No. 4-seed Baldwin to make the semi-finals. Kapolei finished fourth after losing to eventual state champ Punahou.

Waipahu American Legion League baseball team advances to World Series

Waipahu’s American Legion League baseball team found itself one pitch away from elimination at the Northwest Regionals in Eugene, Ore., in mid-July before producing a most improbable finish. “We took the long route,” coach Jared Abreu would tell MidWeek‘s West Oahu Islander later.

With Waipahu’s Bryson Yasui facing an 0-2 count at the plate, with two outs in the bottom half of the ninth in their game with Cheyenne, Wyo., and the Marauders down two runs, it all looked bleak. Instead, Yasui singled to fuel a three-run inning that allowed Waipahu to escape its predicament and secure a riveting 8-7 win as well as advancement in the tournament an appearance in the AL. World Series in Shelby, N.C.

Waipahu went on to finish third in the World Series, ending its incredible run.

Longtime coach retires

Waipahu baseball head coach Milton Takenaka wrapped up a 28-year career by leading the Marauders to a 9-8 season, the school’s first since being promoted to Division I the previous off-season. Takenaka led Waipahu to three OIA titles and a state championship during his tenure.