Sunday, August 19, 2018

Observations from the Officials’ Tournament

December 22, 2008 by  
Filed under Coach's Comments

Here are some random thoughts I had about this week’s tournament:

  • It’s a shame more care wasn’t put into seeding the brackets. Setting up brackets so that the “top” wrestlers are separated is one of the more time consuming parts of a tournament and it’s usually the reason most tournaments start late. That said, the Officials’ Tournament has become one of only two tournaments (along with the Maui Invitational) where the majority of the teams from all four leagues participate and has become very important to proper seeding of the state tournament. When you have two of the top three wrestlers in the weight class matched up in the first round (as you did at 120) or two state champions in the same half bracket (as you did at 125), that diminishes the value of the tournament for year-end seeding purposes and that’s too bad.
  • 125 is an insanely great weight class. If everyone stays at the weight, you’ll have three state champions at the weight class (Reid Oshiro, Pun; Bill Takeuchi, PC; and Shayden Terukina, KS), plus a couple of guys who – on any given day – are capable of knocking off one of these champs.
  • Top to bottom, 114 may be the best weight class in the state. You don’t have the three state champs like you do at 125, but there are probably 5 or 6 wrestlers who can win in February.

Of course, the main reason we wrestle pre-season tournaments is to get good matches and this tournament really delivered. Here are a few that I was impressed by. Please add a comment if you saw others that I didn’t – I hope you’ll understand why there are mostly Punahou matches in my list below ;-).

120 – First round match between Nakagawa (Kaiser) and Hirai (Pun). This was a repeat of last year’s State semi-final at 112 and was just as exciting.

114 – Quarter finals matches, the first between Ng (Pun) and Hidalgo (Lahainaluna) and the other between Vu (Iolani) and Medeiros (St. Louis). This is shaping up to be one of the toughest weight classes in the state and these two matches were probably a good indication of what we have to look forward to at the State Tournament. Hidalgo beat Ng with a reversal in the final five seconds, and Vu beat Medeiros in overtime.

125 – Oshiro (Pac-5) vs. Terukina (KS), twice! Both of these kids are instinctive wrestlers and both matches were up-tempo and non-conventional. Terukina was a state champion last year at 112 (and only the fourth freshman boys state champs in Hawaii history). Oshiro had a terrible state tournament last year. He could/should have placed high and is very much in the mix for this year’s championship at 125. Oshiro beat Terukina twice, once in the quarter finals (seeding problem…) 7-3, and again for third place, 3-1. Guys, if you read this, great wrestling!

125 – Oshiro (Pac-5) vs. Oshiro (Pun). This was one of the semi-finals matches and could well be a preview of the state championship (although — as they should — I’m sure Terukina and Takeuchi will disagree).

171 – Sheehan (Pun) vs. Hokoana (KS). I’m not sure how many times these two guys have wrestled each other (it’s a lot), but it’s always a barn burner. This one was a back-and-forth scramble for six minutes, finally decided in OT. I’m always amazed at how quickly Hokoana can explode from that ugly starting position on bottom ;-).

275 – Fuimaono (Pun) vs. Yap (KS). For those who saw this match, can you believe you were watching heavyweights?!  Non-stop action, bodies flying around…I don’t think our 160 pounder moves as quickly as these two.

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