Unbeaten girls 15 crew helps Keaukaha to second at states
Keaukaha’s girls 15 crew capped an unbeaten season Saturday on Kauai as strong showings by youth crews spurred the club to a runner-up Division AAA finish at the Hawaiian Canoe Racing Association state championships at Hanalei Bay.
Keaukaha also got victories in boys 12 and 13 as well as from its men’s masters 40 canoe to wind up seven points behind Keahiakahoe (Oahu), which dethroned three-time champion Keauhou.
The Keaukaha girls 15 entry — Tai Jadu, Amy McBride, Tiare Ah Nee, Hailey Keliipuleole, Tita Hall-Peleiholani, Hele Joaquin — won its half-mile race in 4 minutes, 26.67 seconds, becoming the only Big Island canoe to finish the year undefeated.
Keauhou recorded wins in three events, and as usual it was led its older paddlers, picking up gold in men’s 65, women’s masters 60 and mixed masters 55. The club finished fifth.
Kai Opua was the only other Big Island club to record a victory, taking gold in men’s novice B and men’s junior. The seven-time Moku O Hawaii Outrigger Canoe Racing Association champion finished fifth in Division AAAA with 222 points. Hawaiian Canoe Club (351) was the winner.
Puna finished third in AA, while Kawaihae took second in A, finishing just a point behind Napili.
Keaukaha’s Ka’i Kawelu and Kamaha’o Kawelu were double winners on the day, taking first in boys 12 and 13.
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