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Led by the surfing teams, Maui Prep achieves strong spring sports season

By Staff | May 11, 2017

From left, head coach Andrew O'Riordan, junior bodyboarder Jake Houglum, Maui Preparatory Academy alumnus Zane Schweitzer, Maui Interscholastic League surfing champion Sophia Johnston, Most Improved MIL Surfer Irie Gonah and German boarding student Luna Bellinghausen are pictured at the Lahaina Harbor contest.

NAPILI – The Maui Preparatory Academy spring sports season for 2017 was highlighted by the second Maui Interscholastic League girls surfing championship in school history and a second place finish by the boys team.

Led by the dominating performance of senior Sophia Johnston, who captured the girls shortboard and bodyboard titles, the Pueo girls dominated the six-meet MIL season to win the championship. Irie Gonah backed up Johnston’s effort for the Pueo wahine with a bronze medal effort in the shortboard competition and a fifth in the bodyboard bracket.

Ty Kirby led the Maui Prep boys with silver medals in the shortboard and bodyboard events, and Dante Silva finished fifth in the shortboard category.

“The Maui Prep surf team recorded its best season ever and included students from Maui, Molokai, Germany and China. Irie Gonah was honored as the Most Improved Surfer of the Year in this banner year for Maui Prep surfing. We had a team of 15 members who trained hard to improve, and our athletes placed in the finals at contests at D.T. Fleming, Koki Beach, Lahaina Harbor and at Hookipa,” said head coach Andrew O’Riordan, who was assisted by Dylan Payne, Rick Iaconetti and Kawaiola Wendt.

“We are building a rigorous program of water sports at Maui Prep, and the future looks bright for these hard-charging student athletes.”

The Pueo track team also recorded a milestone, as the largest roster since 2010 competed in the MIL this spring. The program was guided by Khara Lewis, Dennis Nakamura and Fred Lewis, and the highlight this year was the state qualifying effort of Alexa Narayan in the high jump.

Maui Prep golf also moved up in the MIL, as the boys team – led by state qualifiers Beau Johnston, Adam Quandt and Hudson Holland – finished second in the final league standings.

Meghan Singh earned a ticket into the state tournament at Kaanapali this year in the breakthrough season as Maui Prep’s first girls golf team in school history.

After rising to the top of the MIL in 2015 and 2016, the Maui Prep tennis teams suffered through a rebuilding year, as dominant players from the past two seasons transferred away. The program was led by head coach Tracy Halbersleben and assistant Bill Smith.