Warriors, Spartans Seeded Fourth in Volleyball
By Fred Guzman
But the Warriors wasted no time lamenting the end of their record run of 54 straight volleyball victories. Quickly regrouping from Friday night’s five-set loss to Baldwin, Kamehameha-Maui swept the Bears in a playoff match on Saturday afternoon to claim another MIL Division-I overall championship.
On Friday night, before a noisy packed house at the Baldwin gym, the hometown Bears rode a sensational performance by Kalei Vaivai to stun Kamehameha, 25-19, 25-23, 12-25, 23-25, 15-12 in the title game of the MIL tournament. Vaivai had 20 kills and 14 digs for Baldwin.
That set the stage for a playoff for the overall title on Saturday and, this time, Kamehameha responded with a decisive 25-17, 25-20, 25-16 sweep.
The Warriors and MIL D-II champion Seabury Hall have been seeded fourth in the state tournaments that begin this week on Oahu. Seabury advanced with a five-set, title-clinching win on Friday over Molokai, which earned a trip to states by beating Hana in a playoff for second place in D-II. The Lady Farmers are defending state D-II champions.
In the D-I state tourney, Baldwin opens on Wednesday against Castle in a 5 p.m. match at Farrington High. The winner faces second-seeded Mililani on Thursday at the same time and at the same venue.
Kamehameha-Maui draws a first-round bye before facing the winner of Kahuku versus Kaiser in Thursday’s 5 p.m. quarterfinal contest at McKinley High.
In D-II, Molokai meets St. Francis in a 7 p.m. match at Kaimuki High. The winner faces No. 2 seed Roosevelt on Thursday. Seabury jumps into action on Thursday, challenging the winner of Kauai versus Leilehua in a 5 p.m. contest at Kalani High.
MIL FOOTBALL: In MIL football action over the weekend, Lahainanaluna rallied from 13-0 deficit early in the third quarter for a 14-13 road win over King Kekaulike on Friday.
The Lunas, who already have clinched the league’s D-II title, didn’t seal the deal against Kekaulike until Tytus Lucas picked off a pass in the end zone with just 17 seconds left in the game.
On Saturday, eighth-ranked Baldwin improved its MIL record to 7-0 and spoiled Maui High’s homecoming by defeating the Sabers 30-0 at War Memorial Stadium.
Running back Kina Malafu celebrated his return to Baldwin’s lineup following a knee injury by rushing for 149 yards and two scores on 18 carries. Senior defensive end Vili Tolutau had a monster game, registering four sacks, forcing two fumbles – recovering both – and blocking a field goal.
Overcoming a 13-0 deficit early in the third quarter, Lahainaluna rallied for the lead and then held off King Kekaulike for a dramatic 14-13 road victory. Tytus Lucas sealed the win by picking off a pass in the end zone with 17 seconds left in the game after having earlier scored Lahainaluna’s first TD on a short run.
Baldwin is idle this week, but four other teams will be busy. On Friday, Kamehameha Maui visits King Kekaulike. On Saturday, Lahainaluna tangles with Maui High. Both games are scheduled for 7 p.m. kickoffs and will be aired on ESPN 550.
CROSS COUNTRY: Both the Seabury Hall girls and the Maui High boys maintained their dominance in cross country, easily winning their respective titles during Saturday’s MIL championships. Both teams, along with other team and individual qualifiers, will compete in Friday’s state championships at Kapalua. Sophomore Dakota Grossman easily won the girls’ event to lead Seabury Hall to the title, while senior Nicola Perez-Garreaud did the same for the Maui High boys.