Corniel steps down as Sabers coach

Coach guided Maui High to D-I state title in April

Chase Corniel reacts after getting doused following Maui High School’s win in the Division I state baseball final in April. @AndrewLeeHI / ANDREW LEE photo

Chase Corniel reacts after getting doused following Maui High School’s win in the Division I state baseball final in April. @AndrewLeeHI / ANDREW LEE photo

It came down to family over baseball for Maui High School’s Chase Corniel.

The Sabers’ head baseball coach stepped down on Thursday, just over three months after guiding the team to the Division I state championship.

A news release from the school cited the fact that Corniel is now a vice principal at Maui High as being a factor in the decision, but Corniel said it was more so he can help his wife Regina look after their son Ezra, who will celebrate his 2nd birthday on Aug. 14.

“It was a tough decision, it was a decision made for my family,” Corniel told The Maui News. “It was particularly my son, Ezra, who is hearing impaired. He has bilateral microtia. Both ears are under developed. He has no ear canals.

“A lot of people don’t know that, but I’m trying to look big picture here with him. This is a great opportunity to further my career and help with his future, too.”

Ezra Corniel can hear wearing a cochlear device.

“A lot of his skills are delayed because of his hearing, and it’s something that I had to focus on,” Chase Corniel said. “I had to give more attention to my son. It wasn’t just about carrying on the state championship — it was about my family and my son.”

Maui High athletic director Mike Ban said the school will accept applications for the job until Aug. 11 via email at michael.ban@mauihigh.org.

“We want to thank Coach Corniel for his dedication, passion and perseverance in building our baseball program,” Ban said in the news release. “He and his coaching staff have done a tremendous job developing these young boys into men. We will miss his leadership and guidance but we are very fortunate that he will serve our school community as an administrator.”

Corniel said he will keep an eye on the Sabers and he hopes his assistant coaches are considered for the job. He was The Maui News Maui Interscholastic League Coach of the Year in 2012 and 2017.

“I’m going to miss it, of course, I love baseball, but it’s not about what I want,” Corniel said. “My family is No. 1. My son needs me.”

* Robert Collias is at rcollias@mauinews.com.

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