LIHU‘E — The state title could very well be in Chas Okamoto’s possession this morning, as the Kapa‘a High School senior is in the finals of the Carlsmith Ball/Hawai‘i High School Athletic Association Tennis Championships.
The No. 1 seed in the Boys Singles bracket, Okamoto was a 6-4, 6-1 winner Friday in the semifinals over Puhanou’s Robin Kiyabu, the No. 3 seed. It was the first match of the tournament that Okamoto had dropped even a single game.
This morning he will take on St. Anthony’s Kento Tanaka-Tamaki, the No. 2 seed, as the bracket has played almost exactly to form. Seven of the eight seeded players made the quarterfinals, with the top four into the semis and now the top two in the final.
Okamoto’s first match of the day was a 6-0, 6-0 win over Punahou’s Issei Funatsu, the only non-seeded player in the quarters. That followed another pair of 6-0, 6-0 wins in his first two matches on Thursday.
His opponent, Tanaka-Tamaki, was a 6-3, 7-6 (2) winner over No. 4 Brandon Lee of Punahou in the semifinals.
Okamoto and Tanaka-Tamaki are scheduled to play at 8:30 a.m. at the Royal Lahaina Tennis Complex for the state championship. Kiyabu and Lee will play for third place at the same time.
Kaua‘i High School’s Sarah Kukino, seeded No. 3, reached the semifinals of the Girls Singles tournament, before falling Friday to the No. 1 seed. She was beaten by Waiakea’s Sarah Dvorak, 6-3, 6-2.
Having reached the quarters with a pair of Thursday victories — including a second-round win over Waimea High School’s Lani Rae Green (6-1, 6-4) — Kukino then topped No. 7 seed Karlene Pang of Hawai‘i Baptist, 6-4, 6-2, before falling to Dvorak.
She has one more match today, going against No. 4 seed Kristen Poei of ‘Iolani in the third-place match.
The Girls Singles championship will be decided by Dvorak and Mililani’s Alyssa Tobita, the No. 5 seed.
Both matches are scheduled for 8:30 a.m. at the Royal Lahaina Tennis Complex.
Having each advanced past the first round, the two Kaua‘i Interscholastic Federation Girls Doubles teams both lost their second-round matches.
Kaua‘i High School’s Shay Orial and Jennifer Grady were beaten by the No. 6 seed from ‘Iolani, Andrea Baysa and Brooke Alcuran, 6-1, 6-2.
The Island School duo of Madison Duarte and Meghan Perius lost in the second round to ‘Iolani’s Alison Goo and Kara Okazaki, 6-1, 6-1.
The championship in Girls Doubles will be played between a pair of Punahou entries. The No. 1 seeded team of Jennifer Laws and Sarah Steele will take on teammates and No. 4 seed, Ashley Nakaoka and Dani Young.
The Boys Doubles tournament played down to two teams, with top seed Marcel Chan and Roman Kop of Kamehameha-Kapalama ready to face No. 7 Colin Tseng and Lawrence Ho of ‘Iolani.
All four No. 1 seeds have reached the final matches, with a two, a four and a seven seed as their opponents.
Facing severe weather delays Thursday, the tournaments were able to get back on schedule Friday.