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Maui Wowie: Crusaders Shop up Big at Baldwin

Crusaders+pose+with+the+second+place+trophy.
Crusaders pose with the second place trophy.

Crusaders pose with the second place trophy.

Crusaders pose with the second place trophy.

Kainalu Reyes Hackney, Sports Writer

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The wrestling season has just begun, and the Saint Louis Crusaders are looking like a top 5 team in the state, following their performance at the Maui Invitational Tournament at Baldwin High School. This is the first time the team has traveled off island during the Al Chee era, and will not be the last throughout his time as a head coach. Eight out of the twelve wrestlers that flew up placed in their designated weight classes. The team also won second place overall, while only filling out nine out of the fourteen weight classes.

        3-time state champ, Corey Cabanban, seemed to be relentless while wrestling with a swollen eye from a previous tournament. This was his first loss since his freshman year, but was due to forfeit from an injury. He defeated all opponents, and won by pin in the first period of his finals match. Another Senior, Kayson Kekahuna, also finished first place in the 285-weight class.

First Place finishers with their brackets.

He is someone to look out for this wrestling season and looks to be a state placer. Kekahuna’s brother, Elijah, placed first as well in the 113-weight class and after finishing in fifth place last year as a freshman, he is hungry to be a state champion.

        In the 145-weight class the Crusaders had two placers in Koali Nishigaya, who finished fifth, and Boltyn Tam, who finished third at third place. Both wrestlers met each other in the quarter final match where Tam advanced to the semis but lost. Branson Magsayo is one of the young freshman on the team that looks to be a formidable opponent for all in the 106-weight class. He also finished third place. Finishing second in both their weight classes and probably the most overlooked wrestlers in the state are Tyler Ibarra and Kalae Correa. Both did not wrestle in states last year. Ibarra was behind Corey Cabanban but now has his time to shine being in a different weight class. Correa was out for the season due to a leg injury. Correa and Ibarra are definitely wrestlers to keep an eye on coming into the state finals. The Crusaders as a team are looking like a dangerous this season, and look to break into the top three in the state.

We are the best in the state we just have to prove it”

— Coach Wayne Ibarra

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