LIHUE — A handshake in the offices of Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. announced a collegiate basketball game scheduled in December on Kauai.
“Chaminade University will be the home team,” said Lenny Rapozo, the county’s Department of Parks and Recreation director. “They will be playing the University of Hawaii men’s basketball team on Dec. 14 starting at 7 p.m. at the Kauai High School gym.”
Rapozo said tickets have yet to go on sale, and details for the presale tickets will be forthcoming.
“The most important thing is we have a college basketball game we can enjoy without having to go to Oahu,” Rapozo said. “And when the teams get here, there are a lot of opportunities for our youth basketball players to learn from these collegiate programs.”
Rapozo said the Hawaii team is scheduled to arrive on Dec. 13 and will be having practice.
“The practice will be open to the public,” Rapozo said. “Chaminade will be coming in on the morning of Dec. 14 and will be doing shoot-arounds and practice, which is also open to the public.”
Additionally, Rapozo said there will be an opportunity to meet with the coaches and a compliance officer so high school students and parents can better understand the opportunities of post-high school sports.
“This is not just limited to basketball,” Rapozo said. “Collegiate scholarship programs are available for a lot of sports and non-sporting activities. The compliance requirements are pretty much the same so people can take advantage of the meeting to learn more about how to continue participating and learning beyond high school.”
Rapozo said having the University of Hawaii athletes on Kauai is not just limited to basketball. The women’s soccer program hosted a workshop and scrimmage during the summer.
The University of Hawaii men’s golf team, where Kauai High School graduate and Kauai Interscholastic Federation golf standout Justin “Pono” Tokioka has been accepted, will be hosting one of two tournaments, here.
“I met with Hawaii golf coach during the Hawaii High School Athletic Association state golf tournament and told him the John A. Burns Intercollegiate tournament was started on Kauai,” Rapozo said. “Now, Hawaii has agreed to bring the tournament home to the Wailua Golf Course.”
The UH men’s golf team will be hosting the Warrior Princeville Makai Invitational, Nov. 4 through 6 at the Princeville Makai Golf Course.
The Warriors return on Feb. 19 through 21 for the John A. Burns Intercollegiate at the Wailua Golf Course.
“This is tremendous,” Rapozo said. “It’s like the days when Western Kentucky used to host their collegiate golf tournaments here.”
• Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-0453 or firstname.lastname@example.org.