Na Pueo boys, Na Alii girls win as championship showdown looms
LAHAINA — The races for the Maui Interscholastic League surf team titles tightened up Saturday at Lahaina Harbor as Maui Preparatory Academy took the boys competition and King Kekaulike won the girls division at the third meet of the season.
Shortboard champion Dante Silva led Na Pueo to a 4,299-4,085 win over King Kekaulike, while Lahainaluna was third.
Na Alii returned the favor on the girls’ side, defeating Maui Prep, 4,901-4,096. Kamehameha Maui was third.
The two league leaders will meet for a showdown at Hookipa in two weeks at the final MIL contest.
King Kekaulike should have the edge since Hookipa is their home surfbreak, according to Na Alii coach Matt Brown.
“We should have an advantage, but I don’t underestimate Maui Prep,” he said. “They have a lot of great surfers. It’s going to be a challenge.
“I love the tight competition. It makes it exciting, nothing better than having teams neck and neck going for it. There are so many good surfers. It’s going to be epic at Hookipa.”
Maui Prep coach Aaron Huish knows it will be close.
“It’s a tight one, kids are doing so amazing, looking forward to it,” he said. “We have to try and get over there to Hookipa to practice.”
Na Pueo had two individual champions at Lahaina Harbor, with Silva and Irie Gonah (girls bodyboard) each winning their second contest.
Maui Prep has two of the last three girls MIL surf titles, but the boys have yet to win a league championship.
“If we can get a boys win that would be pretty cool,” Silva said. “Especially because at our school, our boys aren’t that good at sports as a team.”
Gonah was happy to win the bodyboard, but she seemed just as stoked with her third-place finish in the shortboard.
“I’ve been working a lot in practice on my surfing, so I was really happy to get third,” Gonah said. “I don’t like to be aggressive so I’m trying to assert myself more in the line-up.”
Madison Runyon of Lahainaluna also claimed her second win of the season in the girls shortboard.
Lahainaluna freshman George Rocha won the boys bodyboard division. On his third wave in the final, Rocha completed an ARS (air, roll, spin maneuver). Judges gave him excellent range scores (8.4-9.0), the highest scores in any final.
“I landed that flip on that left,” Rocha said. “It was more of a double-up, so I came down and I saw the section and it was boostable, so I boosted it and stuck it.”
Through 3 of 4 MIL meets
Boys–Maui Prep 27, King Kekaulike 26, Lahainaluna 21, Kamehameha Maui 18, Hana 15, Seabury Hall 11, Baldwin 10, Maui High 7, Haleakala Waldorf 3.
Girls–King Kekaulike 23, Maui Prep 22, Kamehameha Maui 17, Seabury Hall 16, Lahainaluna 14, Baldwin 9, Maui High 7, Haleakala Waldorf 3.
MIL MEET NO. 3
At Lahaina Harbor
Team–Maui Prep 4,229, King Kekaulike 4,085, Lahainaluna 3,497, Hana 2,197, Kamehameha Maui 2,092, Seabury Hall 1,427, Baldwin 1,305, Maui High 1,212, Haleakala Waldorf 694.
Shortboard–1. Dante Silva, Maui Prep; 2. Axel Rosenblad, King Kekaulike; 3. Tony Nunez, Maui Prep; 4. Tyler Kirby, Maui Prep; 5. Angelo Constantino, Lahainaluna; 6. Spike Shannon, Baldwin; 7. Zach Newton, Hana; 8. Kaawaloa Shamblin, Hana; 9.Charles Shull, Seabury Hall.
Bodyboard–1. George Rocha, Lahainaluna; 2. Tyler Kirby, Maui Prep; 3. Miles Obley, King Kekaulike; 4. Alex Fahland, King Kekaulike; 5. Kahiau Luat-Hueu, Kamehameha Maui; 6. Kawai Kauhane, Lahainaluna; 7. Trae Tripple Grow, King Kekaulike; 8. Jackson Green, King Kekaulike; 9. Ryan West, Lahainaluna.
Team–King Kekaulike 4,901, Maui Prep 4,096, Kamehameha Maui 3,044, Lahainaluna 2,243, Baldwin 1,377, Seabury Hall 1,178, Maui High 282.
Shortboard–1. Madison Runyon, Lahainaluna; 2. Tatiana Ebro, King Kekaulike; 3. Irie Gonah, Maui Prep; 4. Kamalei Roback, Kamehameha Maui; 5. Kayla McCarthy, King Kekaulike; 6. Taitum Jones, King Kekaulike; t7. Ashley Nielson, Maui Prep; t7. Skyla Adriano Howard, Baldwin; t9. Kaya Mullen, King Kekaulike; t9. Emma Gomes, King Kekaulike.
Bodyboard–1. Irie Gonah, Maui Prep; 2. Cecilia Buckingham, King Kekaulike; 3. Kaya Mullen, King Kekaulike; 4. Kamalei Roback, Kamehameha Maui; 5. Jordyn Houglum, Maui Prep; 6. Taitum Jones, King Kekaulike; t7. Labryana Hookano, Kamehameha Maui; t7. Riann Fujihara, Kamehameha Maui; t7. Breanna Higgs, Lahainaluna; t7. Kawai Kupuni, Kamehameha Maui.