Big Island Interscholastic Federation faces serious shortage of facilities and manpower
Of all the leagues in Hawaii, none has the transportation issues of the three-island Maui Interscholastic League.
Then again, there isn't another league that has some of the concerns of the Big Island Interscholastic Federation. As the winter season nears, executive director Ken Yamase has his hands full with some of the league's toughest problems ever.
» Facilities. Kohala will again have no access to Hisaoka Gym, a county facility that can accommodate the Cowboys' large basketball crowds. The gym has been shut down since last year, a victim of the earthquake.
"Nobody has gone into Hisaoka Gym. It's totally red-tagged," Yamase said. "They estimate in the millions to fix that."
For a second year in a row, Kohala's boys basketball team will probably host home games at Hawaii Prep and Konawaena. HPA is 28 miles away. Konawaena is 70 miles to the south. The alternative is the tiny, ancient school gym, which seats only 250. That would leave half of Kohala's loyal fans locked out.
Kohala isn't the only school without a gym on campus. Honokaa's home gym, Lester Bryan Armory, is undergoing a makeover until late January. That leaves the local county gym, about a half-mile away, as the new home for the Dragons.
» Shortage of manpower. The switch of girls basketball season from the spring to the winter has hit the BIIF especially hard. The smaller population base and vast distances between schools create a serious handicap when it comes to recruiting new officials. Officials are compensated for the long drives.
"We have to pay for mileage, otherwise we couldn't get anyone to officiate," Yamase said.
Still, the shortage is real. The league would like to have 35 to 40 basketball officials. Currently, there are only 26.
With girls and boys playing in the same season, Yamase expects the league to operate basketball games six nights a week, Monday through Saturday.
This is a challenge, he said, because some officials work early in the morning. Officiating six nights a week is too much for some working early-shift jobs.
To gain an edge in the battle, the league planned to host an all-sports officials meeting last night.
"After the general meeting, they're gonna break out with their sport coordinators and get everybody on the same page at once instead of waiting until the sport starts," Yamase said.
The shortage of manpower extends to baseball and softball.
"Hopefully, then we can recruit people who ref basketball to maybe umpire softball," Yamase said.
Softball and baseball will compete for field time at practice. However, the bigger challenge will be securing fields for games.
"Softball is going to compete with T-ball and coach pitch (for fields)," Yamase said.
In addition, boys volleyball will be in the spring season for the first time. That's fine on most islands, but in the BIIF, there's the granddaddy of local club tournaments, the Haili.
"They will have all the gyms and all the officials. That's one week we can't touch anything," Yamase said, dreading the scheduling complications.
"This is kind of a nightmare."
Kalaepohaku will wait
For months, Saint Louis football players, coaches and fans looked forward to an actual home game on campus. The Crusaders were scheduled to host Damien on Saturday.
However, because the adjacent fieldhouse is under renovation, the game has been moved to Aloha Stadium. Kickoff is set for 2 p.m. as part of a tripleheader for the Interscholastic League of Honolulu.
"I've been here 23 years and we never had one here," Saint Louis coach Delbert Tengan said. "Our kids were looking forward to having the game here."
In addition to the renovation of the fieldhouse, where the restrooms are located, limited seating and parking were also issues. At best, the bleachers would have accommodated 500, Tengan estimates.
"But the (Aloha) Stadium isn't bad, not at all," he said. "Now the fans can pay a swap meet parking fee, shop around and see three games."
Swap meet parking, Tengan said, is 75 cents. The parking rate for football games is $2.
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Athletes of the week
Maryknoll cross country
She led the girls field at the Punahou Invitational with a time of 19 minutes, 31 seconds.
Bryce Jenkins Leilehua cross country
Captured the Punahou Invitational boys championship for a third year in a row in 16 minutes, 27 seconds -- a course record.
» Russ Almeida
, Saint Louis: 224 high game against Academy of the Pacific
» Sean Arakaki, Hawaii Baptist: 231 high game against Kamehameha
» Nolan Murakami, Punahou: 231 high game against Mid-Pacific
» Elisabeth Seamon, Hawaii Baptist: 221 high game against St. Francis
» Suzana Signaigo, St. Andrew's Priory: 220 high game against Academy of the Pacific
» Sean Wright, Maryknoll: 225 high game against Assets
» Bruce Andrews
, Kalaheo: caught five passes for 100 yards, including two touchdowns
» Samson Anguay, Campbell: ran for touchdowns of 74 and 70 yards against Leilehua
» B.J. Jelf, Waianae: the converted running back ran for 75 yards and two touchdowns, and added 91 passing yards against Kapolei
» Kapono Kaiwi-Barrionnebo, Kaimuki: passed for 190 yards and three touchdowns without an interception, and also ran for 30 yards on four carries against Nanakuli
» Justin Kauwalu, Waianae: rushed for 97 yards and a touchdown, and added two catches for 20 yards against Kapolei
» Kaipo Kea, Leilehua: threw for 257 yards and three touchdowns against Campbell
» Kela Marciel, Iolani: threw for 172 yards and one touchdown, and ran for 108 yards against Damien
» Troy Matautia, Waipahu: ran for 89 yards and one touchdown, and also threw for 53 yards and another score against Anuenue
» Keo Palimoo, Waipahu: rushed for 104 yards and two touchdowns against Anuenue
» Dalaunte Stevenson, Mililani: scored four touchdowns -- two on runs, one on a reception and one on an 88-yard kickoff return -- against Radford
» Cody vonAppen, Kalaheo: threw for 186 yards, two touchdowns and no picks, and also rushed seven times for 67 yards against McKinley
» Kolten Wong, Kamehameha-Hawaii: rushed for 168 yards and three touchdowns against Kohala
» Justin Yamamoto, Iolani: rushed for 123 yards and two touchdowns against Damien
» Ryan Dolan
, Pac-Five: led the ILH boys regatta with a time of 8 minutes, 51 seconds
» Rachel Fujita, Punahou: paced the ILH girls regatta in 10:40
» Kaleinani Kabalis
, Moanalua: nine kills and four service aces against Kahuku
» Carsen Mata, Moanalua: 18 assists against Kahuku
» Tajana Santiago, Kahuku: 22 assists and one ace against Moanalua
» Rayfe Gaspar-Asaoka
, Iolani: three goals against Kamehameha
Call: 529-4782. Fax: 529-4787. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
JAMM AQUINO / JAQUINO@STARBULLETIN.COM
Saint Louis' Austin Wahinekona left two Punahou tacklers behind on the way to a first down during last Friday's ILH game. The Crusaders won 7-0.
To nominate ...
To nominate an athlete of the week, contact the Star-Bulletin Sports Department by 11 p.m. Sunday: