LIHUE — Kauai High School’s Mark Tabalbag cleared the high jump bar at 5 feet, 10 inches to be eligible for the state track and field championships, Friday during the Kauai Interscholastic Federation track and field championships that unfolded under cold winds and heavy overcast conditions at Vidinha Stadium.
Tabalbag’s feat was overshadowed by Island School’s Kilikai Ahuna, who achieved state qualifying marks in three events — the 110 meter hurdles (16.10 seconds), the boys long jump (21-02.25 — his longest leap of the season), and the boys triple jump (44.01.50).
“He did not have to jump in the boys triple because he already made his state mark, last week,” said Cory Dobashi, a Voyager coach. “But he wanted to.”
Terrence Kamaka-Riley, a Waimea student athlete, also made his state mark in the boys discus throw with a first-place toss of 135 feet, 5.5 inches, to round out the state qualifying performances for the boys.
Tabalbag’s leap helped lead the Kauai High boys to the KIF team championship with 181 points. The Kapaa High boys, although coming up short on state-qualifying events Friday, filled in the No. 2 spot with 132 points, with Island School at 81 points and Waimea with 71 points.
The Kauai High girls completed the sweep behind first-place performances of the 4×400-meter relay and 4×100-meter relay teams, as well as individual achievements from Taegan Keep, throwing the discus 114 feet, 5 inches, and Kay Bronwyn rebounding from a third-place finish in the 100-meter hurdles to finish first with a state-qualifying time 49.73 seconds mark in the girls 300-meter hurdles. Mia Takekuma made a state-qualifying time of 2:30.67 and finished first in the 800-meter run, and Britney Ehia (27.26) and Lindsey Nakea-Tresler (27.42) were one-two in the 200-meter dash.
The Red Raider wahine soared to 191 points to collect the KIF track and field title, followed by Kapaa at 155.50 points. Island School ended with 87 points for third place, with Waimea ending with 27.50 points.
Heather Faretta led the Kapaa performance, collecting a state-qualifying mark with her first finish in the 400-meter dash, tripping the electronic camera at 1:03.02 over the challenge from Kauai’s Stacie Schnackenberg (1:04.92 — not a state standard). Faretta also took first place and qualified for the state championships in the girls high jump, with a leap of 5 feet, 2 inches, after falling short on an attempt at 5 feet, 4 inches.
Brianna Binder surged to an early lead off the blocks in the 100-meter hurdles, crossing the line in 16.54 seconds for a state mark ahead of Waimea’s Monique Joy Lorenzo (17.43), who also made her state standard. Kauai’s Kay, finishing third (17.67 — not a state mark), rebounded for a first finish in the 300-meter hurdles (49.73), with Binder on her heels at 50.11 for second place and a state standard.
Island School’s Wailea Edwards controlled the field events with state-qualifying first finishes in the girls long jump (15 feet, 8 inches), and triple jump (33 feet, 5.5 inches).
During the girls 4×100 relay, the Red Raiders placed two teams in the state marks, its A team taking first in 51.44 seconds, hounded by the Voyagers’ A team at 52.48, and the Kauai B team filling in third place on a 52.73 run — all three teams breaking the state standard barrier.
Kauai girls 4×400 relay rounded out the night with a first finish in 4:18.02 for a state mark, followed by Kapaa’s team crossing at 4:26.85, another state mark.
The 2017 Island Movers Hawaii High School Athletic Association track and field championships will be held on May 12 and 13 at Keaau High School on the Big Island.