MILILANI, Oahu – On Baldwin High School’s track and field team, everyone’s performances are valued, even the ones worth a quarter of a point.
The Bears proved on Saturday why every bit of scoring matters as they finished with 66.25 points, edging Punahou’s 66 and winning a second straight team title at the Island Movers State Championships at John Kauinana Stadium.
Baldwin became the first Neighbor Island team to win back-to-back team titles.
“It’s unbelievable, it’s a honor, it’s a pleasure, it’s indescribable,” said the Bears’ Keelan Ewaliko, who won the 100- and 200-meter dashes and anchored the winning 400 relay team. “It’s awesome.”
Baldwin had five first-place finishes, but the title was a team effort spanning a wide range of events.
Another of the keys was the effort of Tyler Feiteira, who won the 300 hurdles and, bothered by hamstring and groin injuries, finished in a four-way tie for sixth place in the pole vault – worth a quarter-point.
Abraham Reinhardt took the gold medal in the 110 hurdles.
“We knew it would take the whole team to get this championship,” said Baldwin coach Ardis Anguay. “There were some challenges (Friday) with some events not qualifying, disqualifying. We were scared. But the boys stepped it up and did their game.”
King Kekaulike finished with 58.5 points to claim third place, overtaken by Punahou for the runner-up in the standings late in the meet. Jansen Agapay won the long jump and Jake Jacobs won the 400 for Na Alii, who placed second a year ago.
Feiteira said the goal this year was “to work together and bring as much team players as we could and bring home the title.”
He entered the meet with a state-leading mark of 14 feet, 6 inches in the pole vault. Only able to clear 13 feet because of his nagging injury, he made a final push in the 300 hurdles for a time of 40.03 seconds.
“Not going to lie, pole vault, I really wanted to win that,” Feiteira said. “Things happen and it’s done with, can’t do anything to fix it. My teammate (Dusty Flores) got fourth, I’m proud of him and he’ll be back next year.”
Reinhardt won the 110 hurdles in 15.07 and Feiteira was fourth, helping the Bears score 14 points. Baldwin’s Jordan Piano placed eighth.
“Just us three all working hard in practice and doing the best we can do,” Reinhardt said of his team’s showing in the 110 hurdles.
Ewaliko won the 100 in 11.05 and 200 in 22.16.
Dylan Leigh, Gerard Nakamura, Aaron Marzon and Ewaliko won the 400 relay in 42.58. King Kekaulike’s team of Agapay, Corry Brown, Jordan Romero and Jay Braun finished second in 43.02.
“I saw St. Louis stumble in their pass and I just took it as a chance,” said Marzon, who handed the baton off to Ewaliko for the final leg. “God gave that opportunity and I just took it. Once I handed that baton to Keelan, it was all in his hands and God’s hands. All that training that we used since summertime, we condensed it into this one moment to end our senior year and pass the legacy to Dylan Leigh. He’s a sophomore and he’s going to carry it on out for Baldwin.”
Braun showed his emotions as he surged for second place.
“On our team, we have a lot of young guys, a bunch of sophomores. And I tore my ACL in football so I’m making a big comeback right now,” said Braun, who also finished second in the 200. “It’s really good to get second place and catch all these Oahu guys and make a name for King Kekaulike.”
Jacobs won the 400 in 49.77, beating Christian Liberty’s Kekoa Mundo who finished in 50.44.
“I’m really happy with all my work and glad my parents got to make it over here,” said Jacobs, who said he dealt with an urge to vomit after his win.
Agapay won the long jump with a mark of 22-11 1/2.
“It feels good, especially coming in second from last year,” Agapay said.