Banquet concludes historic year for sports at Lahainaluna High School
LAHAINA – The Lahainaluna High School Athletic Awards Banquet for the school year 2014-15 was held on May 21 in the school cafeteria. The event, organized by Co-chairs Scott Soldwisch and Jonathan Conrad, as well as committee members Tanya Arakawa, Kathy Kekahuna, Irene Kosaka, Sharon Nohara and Coreen Serrano, honored the student athletes and the coaches that led Lahainaluna to one of the outstanding athletic years in the 184-year history of the school.
The Lunas rang up seven Maui Interscholastic League championships – in boys and girls basketball, football, boys surfing, water polo, and in boys and girls wrestling – and won unprecedented state championships on both sides of the wrestling mat.
Lahainaluna also had finalists in football and girls basketball to go along with a fifth place finish for boys basketball to further the tsunami of the Luna Red Tide at the state playoffs throughout the year in Honolulu.
The seven MIL titles did not surpass the school record, but according to Athletic Director Soldwisch, the two state championships in wrestling along with the silver medals in football and girls basketball – and second place finishes in softball, boys volleyball, tennis, swimming and golf – turn the tide for a banner year for Luna sports.
“Yeah, it was some years back that we won eight MIL titles, so that’s the record,” he said. “But with the two wrestling state championships and the football and girls basketball teams in the finals in those sports, this year ranks up there with all the banner years in the history of the school.”
The program, emceed by Rob Shelton, honored the team accomplishments and the individual MVPs of each team.
The feature awards on the night were presented to Scholar Athletes of the Year Kaile Stockham and Kerek Franz; Outstanding Athletes of the Year Lalelei Mata’afa and Thomas Rosen-St. John; and Most Distinguished Senior Athletes Nicole Aceret and Amateo Flores.
The student MVP and coach presenter list included Nicole Aceret by coach Macario Pascual for girls tennis; Ariana Badua by Lei Nakamura for softball; Jazzlyn Bonds by Joey Tihada for girls paddling; Ennah Cabading by Barry Borrell in bowling; Josh Chapital by Jason Justus for boys basketball; Tomas Dreibelbis by Daniel Schultz for boys volleyball; Kerek Franz by Sutee Nitakorn for boys golf; Diamond Freitas by Todd Hayase for girls wrestling; Jared Gaastra by Tom Popdan in boys swimming; Faave Galoia by Trixy Nuesca in girls volleyball; Kamal-Craig Golaube by Monchai Panak and Sam Aki for boys cross country and boys soccer; Liz Gonzales by Jeremy Delos Reyes in girls soccer; Folau Hafoka by Todd Rickard in girls basketball; Akoni Hamilton-Golis by Manu Kenolio for baseball; Addi Johnson by Bradley Mason in water polo; Emerson Liburd by Genevieve Ruvald for boys track and field; Max Linder by Macario Pascual in boys tennis; Mario Menze by Luke Adolphson for boys surfing; Gabriela Miyamoto by Monchai Panak in girls cross country; Connor Mowat by Bobby Watson for football (defense); Jared Rocha Islas by Garret Tihada for football (offense); Thomas Rosen-St. John by Todd Hayase in boys wrestling; Shaina Saribay by Ray Yamat for girls track and field; Justice Tihada by Joey Tihada for boys paddling; Amzi Tinajero by Stacy Shibao for cheerleading; Caitlyn Villatora by Laura Jones in girls golf; and Sydney Wagner by Tom Popdan for girls swimming.
“Our gratitude goes out to all the families and staff at Lahainaluna for their support of the athletic programs we have. And special thanks to Principal Emily DeCosta and Complex Area Superintendant Lindsay Ball for their help all year, as well as to Steve Cornell with the athletes’ tutoring program and Glen Pascual for his photographic contributions to all the kids. Glen also sent us over 2,500 images that we used to present a unique slide show that showcased each individual student athlete as they came up for their awards. That made it very special,” Soldwisch said.