KS-Maui Wins 4th Straight MIL Cheerleading Title
By Rodney S. Yap
The Kamehameha Maui varsity cheer team claimed its fourth consecutive Maui Interscholastic League Cheerleading Championship at King Kekaulike High School last Saturday.
Judges awarded the Warriors the highest scores, finishing with 332.25 points, followed by runner-up Baldwin with 284.75. Maui High was third with 271.50 and host King Kekaulike was fourth with 227.25.
Baldwin won the junior varsity competition with 270 points, Maui High had 240.75, Kamehameha Maui 240.25, and King Kekaulike 196.50.
Kamehameha Maui and Baldwin will represent the MIL at the Zippy’s Cheerleading 2014 Championships on Saturday, Nov. 15, at the Blaisdell Arena on O’ahu.
A total of 16 teams will participate in this year’s state tournament, including nine Oahu Interscholastic Association (OIA) schools, two Interscholastic League of Honolulu (ILH) schools, two from the Big Island Interscholastic Federation (BIIF) and one from the Kauai Interscholastic Federation (KIF).
The Warriors are the defending state champions in the Medium Division, for squads of 11 or fewer members. The Warriors won with a meet-high score of 348.75. Nine-time state champion Radford is the defending champion in the Large Division, for squads of 12 to 20 members. Radford’s winning score in 2013 was 340.75.
“We’re really proud of them, they really brought in on Saturday and as coaches that’s really all we can ask of them,” said KS-Maui’s long-time coach Ann Saffery.
This year’s winning 11-member team includes: seniors Acacia Coloma-Mariano, Halia Kekuewa, Jessica Walker, and Rachel Kaulupali; juniors Ashlee Sawai, Chasten Abut, Kawai DeVault and Hannah Patrick; sophomores Kayla Sniffen and Logan Hunter; and freshman Chloe Lawrence.
Kamehameha Maui is also coached by Keali’i Molina, who’s arrival four years boosted the Warriors’ cheer program.
In addition to sweeping MIL and state honors last year, KS-Maui earned the 2014 National Cheerleaders Association National Championship last January in Dallas, Texas. It was at the national competition where Kamehameha Maui upstaged Oahu powerhouse and perennial state champion Radford, in the Small Advanced Coed Division 98.68 to 97.53. The Rams were the defending champions in the division.
Molina, however, plans to call it quits after the state competition to focus more time on his successful club team, Hawai’i All-Star Cheer. For financial reasons, Kamehameha Maui will not be traveling to Texas to defend its national championship in January.
As for the state championships in two weeks, Saffery said, “The team is excited and ready to defend.”
Only Lawrence, Devault and Hunter were not on last year’s championship team.