KEAAU-It was a glorious day for 19 judoka at the Big Island Interscholastic Federation judo championships held at Kamehameha on Saturday as they won individual league honors.
But for some coaches, like Hilo’s Jack De Lima, it was a nail bighting and aging experience.
“I probably aged a year or so watching the boys 132 match,” De Lima said at the end of the meet.
The Viking coach was referring to the 132 pound championship match between Hilo’s top seed, Jordan Enos, and Waiakea’s #2 seed Steven Ogi.
Both Ogi and Enos needed to get through the field of 10 competitors to meet each other in the finals of the boys 132. “Enos/Ogi was probably the match of the day,” De Lima said.
Throughout the scheduled five minute match it was Enos taking the aggressive stance in trying to flip Ogi on several quick moves. But the stubborn Warrior countered and managed to land on his side or to hug the mat face first.
As time was running out and with Enos ahead on points Ogi took the inside position and used a seoinage throw to win by Ippon with only 43 seconds remaining on the clock.
“I was nervous coming into today,” Ogi said after winning his first BIIF title. “My coach told us to do what we do in practice and I tried to come into the finals as confident as I could.”
Waiakea teammate, Tyler Yonemori, stopped eating ice cream in order to make the 145 weight division.
Earlier in the season Yonemori intentionally put on a few extra pounds so that he could go against the larger, stronger opponents, but for the BIIF individual championships the Warrior returned to his most comfortable weight.
“I only needed to lose four pounds,” Yonemori said. “I cut out the ice cream and ate healthy and it was easy for me to lose the weight.”
In the finals Yonemori faced his own teammate, Pat Enos, and won by osaekomi, pin. “There are benefits going against heavier opponents in that they are stronger, but at my weight class the players are quicker.”
Yonemori, who owns a first degree black belt, won his second BIIF judo title to go with a BIIF wrestling crown he won earlier in the year.
“Competing at the championships has more pressure and we have more on the line,” Yonemori said.
Kamehameha’s Jenna Aina also dropped a few pounds to compete in the girls 115 division and defeated Kona’s Haley Delos-Santos to claim her fourth BIIF judo title.
“I was competing at the 122 division in the past and wanted to drop down to the lighter division to prepare for state meet,” Aina said.
Aina, who owns a first degree black belt, had gone all four years undefeated in BIIF judo competition and her highest finish at the state level was third.
“I feel pretty confident that I can do well at states in the 115 class,” she said. “I know at the state level the competition is stiffer, but this is my senior year and I’m hoping to do well.
Another upset of sorts came in the boys 161 when a pair of Vikings in top seed Tyler Vaughn went against #3 seed Isaiah Kamakanui.
The two friends provided the crowd of about 100 a match that went the full 5-minutes with Kamakanui coming out on top by a score of 10-1.
“We’re best friends and I thought Tyler would win,” Kamakanui said after the match. “I lost during a preseason meet to Tyler and we practice together regularly.”
Kamakanui gained six pounds last week to be bumped up into a higher weight class, which helped the Viking boys win their second consecutive team title. (Kamehameha won the girls team title.)
“We only lose Tyler to graduation and we have everyone else returning,” Viking coach De Lima said. “Both Tyler and Isaiah are hard workers and it was tough to see either one lose.”
The 178 weight class pitted Kamehameha’s Eric Young against Hilo’s Sean Arakaki. Young was a couple inches taller than Arakaki as both tried to gain the early advantage.
Young made several attempts to hook his left leg inside of Arakaki’s right leg in order to drag him to the mat, but Arakaki was quick to counter. “I was trying for a ouchi gari,” Young explained after the match.
The private school Warrior senior, with 10 years of judo experience and a brown belt, managed to gain a wazari and two yuko’s to Arakaki’s lone yuko as the match went the full 5-minutes giving Young the victory on points.
“I need to try my best at working on my uchimata and ouchi gari moves,” Young said of his upcoming state championship meet.
The top two judoka in the BIIF championships representing each of the 10 boys and 10 girl’s weight divisions will advance to the Hawaii High School Athlete Association Judo Championships to be held the Stan Sheriff Center in Honolulu on Saturday, May 8.
Results of the BIIF Individual Tournament
Boys Division Girls Division
|Wt. Class||Place||Wt. Class||Place|
|108||1st-Justin Raymond (Konawaena)||98||1st-Megan Aina (Kamehameha)|
|2nd-Dyllan Raiano (Konawaena)|
|103||1st-Kiana Machado (Waiakea)|
|114||1st-Teagan Nakamoto (Konawaena)|
|2nd-Gared Taira (Hilo)||109||1st-Kanoe Padaken (Kamehameha)|
|3rd-Talmage Nakamoto (Konawaena)||2nd-Mindy Lorance (Kealakehe)|
|3rd-Kaylyn Otsubo (Waiakea)|
|121||1st-Sky Souza (Kamehameha)|
|2nd-Charles Aina (Kamehameha)||115||1st-Jenna Aina (Kamehameha)|
|3rd-Sheldon Graham (Hilo)||2nd-Haley Delos Santos (Konawaena)|
|3rd-Micah Ramos (Keaau)|
|132||1st-Steven Ogi (Waiakea)|
|2nd-Jordan Enos (Hilo)||122||1st-Puulena Luuwai-Augustin (Kamehameha)|
|3rd-Ikaika Villanueva (Kamehameha)|
|129||1st-Tanalei Louis (Konawaena)|
|145||1st-Tyler Yonemori (Waiakea)||2nd-Lisa Ann Nakagawa (Waiakea)|
|2nd-Jens Beets (Hilo)|
|3rd-Pat Enos (Waiakea)||139||1st-Kalena Shiroma|
|161||1st-Isaiah Kanakanui (Hilo)||154||1st-Nissi Flores-Jumalon (Waiakea)|
|2nd-Tyler Vaughn (Hilo)||2nd-Kailey Lapenia (Kamehameha)|
|3rd-Quinn Kunitomo (Konawaena)||3rd-Marina Dally (Keaau)|
|178||1st-Eric Young (Kamehameha)||172||1st-Sharon Manarpaac (Hilo)|
|2nd-Sean Arakaki (Hilo)|
|3rd-Kacy Jennings (Kealakehe)||220||1st-Lia Nakamura (Hilo)|
|2nd-Paulina John (Kealakehe)|
|198||1st-Kawika Scott (Konawaena)|
|220||1st-Mark Dumaguin (Konawaena)|
|2nd-Kekai Obrey (Kealakehe)|