Bears claim second straight MIL crown
OLINDA — Baldwin High School’s Hayden Hawes would have preferred an undefeated run to the Bears’ second straight Maui Interscholastic League boys soccer championship.
A 6-1 victory over Seabury Hall to clinch the title Saturday afternoon, however, made it hard for the senior team captain to stay angry.
“It feels great,” Hawes said. “It was a simple game. We just played our game, had fun and came out with the ‘W.’ “
Entering the game one point ahead of King Kekaulike in the standings, the Bears (8-1-1) had four goals in the first half and two in the second. Jacob Hogin began the scoring in the first minute and notched a second in the 52nd.
Angelo Deloso-Flocco (10th minute), Kyle Cummings (24th), Diego Roman-Navarro (29th) and Skyler Wong (65th) scored the Bears’ other goals. George Jansen netted the Spartans’ lone goal in the 77th minute.
“I’m very proud,” Baldwin coach Kaniela Palazzotto said. “Back-to-back (titles) is tough, but the boys were resilient all year.”
The Bears appeared to be headed to another title this season until Na Alii delivered a 3-1 upset last month to take over the top spot. King Kekaulike lost control of its own destiny a few days later, though, with a 0-0 tie with Lahainaluna.
Baldwin and King Kekaulike will both head to the state tournament.
“We had to bounce back from it,” Hawes said. “It was a tough loss for us, but we knew we still had a chance to get first so we played our hearts out.”
Baldwin senior Jonathan Saito said the squad’s 11 seniors and two transfers played a large part in the team’s success this season. Cummings is from Arizona and forward Daniel Mabie is from California.
“We made them feel like family and brought us closer together,” Saito said. “We just play for each other and it’s special this year.”
Seabury Hall (1-9-0) is also headed to the state tournament due to being the only Division II team competing in the MIL this season. Spartan coach John Guarin said he was “pleased” with the way his team fought despite Saturday’s loss.
“They kept their intensity up and never quit, which is challenging against a team of that caliber,” Guarin said. “Individually they got us beat man-for-man, but collectively I’d like them to work together and gain those strengths.”
Baldwin will look to be the first neighbor island school to win a D-I boys soccer title after losing in the semifinals to Kaiser last year.
“It’s going to take luck, good defense and finishing,” Palazzotto said. “When we get the chances in front of goal we got to finish, just like we did today.”
* Chris Sugidono is at firstname.lastname@example.org
W L T Pts
y-Baldwin 8 1 1 25
x-King Kekaulike 7 0 3 24
Lahainaluna 5 3 2 17
Kamehameha Maui 5 5 0 15
Maui High 1 9 0 3
W L T Pts
y-Seabury Hall 1 9 0 3
x-clinched state tournament berth
Baldwin 6, Seabury Hall 1
King Kekaulike 1, Maui High 0
Lahainaluna 4, Kamehameha Maui 0
End of regular season