HANAPEPE — The 41st annual Hawaii State Senior Softball Tournament opened Tuesday on Kauai.
Pat Baniaga, tournament director with help from Jeffrey Kimoto and Mike Curtis, the president of the host Kauai Senior Citizens Softball Association, said the tournament is an opportunity to renew old friendships and make new friends.
“We are all champions,” Baniaga said. “Let us play the game in the spirit of friendly competition and good sportsmanship.”
Tournament play takes place in eight brackets on eight different fields — six at the Hanapepe Stadium, one field each at the Kaumakani Ball Park and the Eleele Ball Park.
Maui Mayor Alan Arakawa donned the uniform of the Maui Dragons, one of the dignitaries involved in tournament play.
Kauai seniors in the A Bracket, considered as the “best of the best,” is represented by the East Kauai Gents coached by Sia Salausa, finishing the Kauai Senior Softball season undefeated with a 22-0 record.
They got off to a strong start against the Hilo Pomaikai, a fourth-place finisher on the Big Island, taking an early 5-0 lead to end the inning on eight hits.
Other Kauai Senior Softball teams participating include the Barteks, Da Kruzers, East Kauai Legends, Hanamaulu Hillsiders, Kawaihau, Kuku’s Aces, Lihue A’s, Ohana, Rebels, Rookies, and West Kauai.
Games continue at Hanapepe, Eleele, and Kaumakani fields through Thursday. Championship games start at 8:30 a.m. on all fields.