LIHUE — Kauai High School distance runner Kane Casillas had a goal of qualifying for the state track and field meet Thursday night, heading into the Kauai Interscholastic Federation Rotary track and field meet at Vidinha Stadium.
“Kane has a goal of qualifying for the 800 meter and the 1,500 meter,” said Peter Riopta, a Kauai coach. “That’s his goal.”
Running under the eyes of visiting relatives and friends, Casillas was one of eight KIF males making qualifying standards during the meet described as the longest-running Rotary events in Hawaii, attaining a state standard of better than 4 minutes, 27.54 seconds in the 1,500 meter run.
Egged on by Kapaa’s Garret Smith, Casillas tripped the clock at 4:23.70, nearly two seconds ahead of Smith (4:25.07) — both first- and second-place finishers making the state standard.
His goal of making states in the 800 meters fell short, crossing the mark at 2:11.55 in first place, shy of the state mark of 2:05.94.
Casilla’s performance helped the Kauai boys finish with 163 points to take the trophy over the challenge of Kapaa’s boys who finished the night with 146.50 points, including qualifying performances from Smith, and the first-place finishing boys 4×400-meter relay team of Edward Bernabe, Kahanu Davis, Rafael Roslin and Gabriel Franklin.
The Island School Voyagers, despite posting a state-qualifying first finish by Kilikai Ahuna in the boys triple jump, finished with 85 points. Waimea High School boys ended the night with 67.50 points.
The Kauai girls completed the night’s sweep as coach Jamilee Jimenez collected both trophies after the Red Raider wahine accumulated 200 points over the challenge of the Warriors who finished with 149.50 points. Waimea High School, placing second in the girls 4×100-meter relay, and senior Monique Joy Lorenzo finishing with a state-qualifying third place in the girls 100-meter hurdles, ended the night with 61 points, followed by Island School girls at 51.5 points.
Completing action in the boys’ events, Ahuna pocketed state standards in the boys 110-meter hurdles (16.01) with a strong first finish over Kapaa’s Tryston Refamonte (18.62), and completed the boys triple jump in first with a leap of 43 feet, 10 inches over Kapaa’s Rafael Roslin (40-04.00), both athletes making the state cut.
In the relays, Kapaa’s 4×400-meter relay team made the state cut on its first finish at 3:42.08, a half second ahead of Kauai’s team (3:42.58) of Keegan Bukoski, Braven DeCosta, Shane Takeuchi and Adonis Llego.
Kapaa’s Ryan Montero completed the state qualifying performances after finishing in first place with a throw of 139-08 in the boys discus, more than 10 feet greater than teammate Morris Unutoa (118.03).
In the girls’ arena where there were 13 state qualifying performances, the girls 100-meter hurdles continued to attract attention when the top three finishers — Kauai’s Bronwyn Kay (16.68), Kapaa’s Brianna Binder (16.69), and Waimea’s Lorenzo (17.33) — surpassed the state cut of 17.44, both the first- and second-place finishers breaking the 18-second mark for the second straight week.
Kay continued to add to the Red Raider girls’ points by finishing first in the girls long jump on a state-qualifying leap of 16 feet, 2.50 inches, and ran the opening leg for the girls 4×100 relay team that also captured a state standard with its first finish of 51.86 ahead of the Waimea team of Lorenzo, Jacelyn Ragragola-Palacio, Makeyah Wisneski and Makana Duncan, finishing at a state-qualifying 53.69. Joining Kay on the team were Lindsey Nakea-Tresler, Torrie Hasegawa and Britney Ehia.
Ehia went on to finish first in the girls 100-meter dash (13.11) and settled for second place following a jump off with Kapaa’s Heather Faretta in the girls high jump after both athletes attained leaps of 5 feet even. She also ran the anchor leg for the girls 4×100 relay team which stopped the clock at 51.86, ahead of the Waimea squad (53.69).
Kapaa’s Asiana Nelson, making her mark with a first finish in the 300-meter hurdles (49.90), rebounded from her fourth finish in the 100-meter hurdles (18.80).
Island School’s Anne Cushnie, posing a strong challenge each week during the girls high jump, finished third on a state-qualifying leap of 4 foot, 10 inches.
Kapaa’s Paea Tafea completed the girls qualifying performances with a first finish of 35 feet, 10 inches in the shot put, and continued by surpassing Kauai’s Taegan Keep (111 feet even) with a throw of 112 feet, 8 inches for top honors in the girls discus.
The final KIF qualifying track and field meet takes place Thursday at 4:30 p.m. at Vidinha Stadium. The KIF championship trials start on April 20, and the championship finals are on April 28.
There is no admission to view the qualifying and championship trials. Admission will be charged at the KIF championship finals.