Members of the Sunrise Athletics Track & Field Club who participated in the Junior Olympic Association Championships on Oahu include, front row, left to right, Chase Kotomori, Stanley Belmes, Tobi Johnson, Teryn Tominaga, Ella Johnson, Akemi Tominaga; middle row, Deylan Okinaka, Kameron Reis, Tyler Clemens-Kailipaka; back row, coach Tyler Kubojiri, Kelsie Kobayashi, Jackson Halford, Vandey Okinaka, Karley Swain, Vanessa Ignacio,Carmen Garson-Shumway, coach Cassie Morigaki. Missing from photo: Saya Yabe, Colton Austria, Maria Calso, SheAnn Belmes,Tyler Honda, Dyson Sato, Tylan Reis, Ian McQuate, and coaches MJ and Lance Tominaga.
The Sunrise Athletics Track and Field club earned 23 medals and 10 ribbons at a Junior Olympics championship meet earlier this month at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.
The Big Island squad was coached by MJ Tominaga and Lance Tominaga, Lory Hunter, Cassie Morigaki, Cameron Nance, Tyler Kubojiri and Lourence Tolentino, and their athletes turned in some of the top times in the meet.
Carmen Garson-Shumway, a Hilo High School standout, outkicked her opponent on the final straightaway in the 800 meters to win in 2 minutes, 25.51 seconds, and she took second in the 1,500 meters.
In a 1,500 race in which only one second separated second and fourth place, Waiakea graduate Jackson Halford was runner-up and Waiakea junior Ian McQuate was fourth.
McQuate later claimed an uncontested 3,000.
Waiakea senior sprinter Colton Austria won silver in the 100 (11.65) and 400 (55.16).
Seventh-grader Tyler Clemens-Kailipaka showed off his speed in the sprints, capturing gold in the 200 and silver in the 100.
Meanwhile, Teryn Tominaga, and Tobi Johnson and Ella Johnson also earned medals or ribbons in their respective events
Congratulations to the Waiakea boys track & field team for winning their first Big Island Interscholastic Federation team title since 1997.
The big scorers for the Cougars came from Jesse Huihui and teammate Alex Engdahl.
Huihui finished second in the 100 and third in the 200 while Engdahl took fourth in the 100 and 200 and captured second in the 300 hurdles.
“I just didn’t come ready today,” Huihui said. “I thought I could have won the 100 and 200, but I wasn’t well prepared.”
Huihui had missed two weeks prior to the championships with a strained knee and was unhappy with his overall performance and needed to drop out of the 4×400 relay.
Five points separated Waiakea from Keaau going into the final event as the Warriors needed to finish in third place to capture the team title.
“Hopefully I can help my team in the relay,” Engdahl said prior to the event. “Our coach asked a lot from us and I’m getting nervous, but I’ll give it the best that I can.”
Waiakea needed a third place relay finish on the final event to capture the team title and the Warriors finished in second to edge out the Cougars by seven points.
“Our coach told us we needed to finish in second to have a chance at winning the team title,” lead relay runner Grant Uekawa said. “I had to get our team out as far as I could to have a chance.”
Waiakea’s anchor, Stephen McAuliffe, took the baton on the final leg in a cluster of runners and knew what he had to do to secure the team victory – the first for Waiakea since the mid 90’s.