But as the eagle leaves its nest, it’s not so far to go. — Led Zeppelin “Ten Years Gone”
Two wrestlers and a football player with the rare distinction of having won four state championships in their high school careers were among 12 named as the 2020 inductees into the Hawaii High School Hall of Honor on Monday.
The Hall of Honor is widely considered the top individual award given to Hawaii high school athletes each year since 1983.
The three four-time state champions now in the Hall are Lahainaluna wrestler Nanea Estrella, Kamehameha wrestler Kysen Terukina and Lahainaluna football running back Joshua Tihada.
Terukina and Estrella wrapped up their fourth titles a month ago, a few short weeks before COVID-19 shut down all sports in the nation. Tihada was a major part of the Lunas’ run to D-II football championships every year since he was a freshman. The Maui football factory will move up to D-I starting next year.
Two student-athletes making it into the Hall made a major impact on Hawaii high school sports — Waipahu running back Alfred Failauga and ‘Iolani volleyball player Elena Oglivie.
Failauga, who was the impetus behind the Marauders’ D-I state title victory when he was a junior, finished his career as Hawaii’s all-time leading rusher with 5,795 yards.
Oglivie was a two-time Honolulu Star-Advertiser player of the year and a three-time Gatorade Hawaii player of the year. She also led the Raiders to two state D-I championships.
Kamehameha-Hawaii’s Chenoa Frederick, a two-sport star, was another chosen to the Hall. She won seven gold medals at the state track and field championships in her four years. she also played soccer.
Another Big Island girl, Konawaena basketball player Caiyle Kaupu, was picked to the Hall after being selected to the Star-Advertiser’s Fab 15 four times. She was also part of two D-I state titles with the Wildcats.
Punahou athlete Legend Matautia got into the Hall by virtue of his two state championships in wrestling and one in judo. He was also a Star-Advertiser first-team All-State selection as a linebacker in football.
Rounding out the 12-person list are:
> Kamehameha three-sport athlete Christmas Togiai (Star-Advertiser basketball player of the year, ILH first-team in volleyball and a football quarterback);
> Saint Louis receiver and track standout Roman Wilson (three-time Open Division football champion picked as first-team All-State twice; three-time gold medal sprinter at state meet);
> Punahou water polo player Christina Hicks (four-time state champion, two-time state tourney most outstanding player);
>> Kapaa’s Laakea Gonsalves (Division II state champion in soccer and an All-State second-team in pick football and soccer.
Six of the 12 honorees are from the ILH, two each from the BIIF and MIL, and one each from the OIA and KIF.
The school breakdown is: two each from Punahou, Lahainaluna and Kamehameha, and one each from Waipahu, Kamehameha-Hawaii, Konawaena, Kapaa, ‘Iolani and Saint Louis.
There were 79 applicants and 31 finalists.
Among the big-time producers who did not make it are Kamehameha volleyball player Keonilei Akana, Kapaa football and soccer player Kahanu Davis and Punahou running back and track standout Vincent Terrell.
The Hall of Honor inductees were selected by a 13-person committee of current and former sports reporters, athletic directors and coaches from around the state. The criteria is based mainly on athletic achievement, but character, sportsmanship, academic record and community service also are taken into consideration.
Each inductee also will be awarded a $2,000 scholarship, courtesy of the HHSAA and Enterprise Holdings, which owns and operates the Enterprise Rent-A-Car, National Car Rental and Alamo Rent-A-Car brands.
The Hall of Honor program has been recognizing the top 12 Hawaii senior student-athletes each year since 1983.
The 13-member selection committee under chairman Clyde Mizumoto is made up of Reydan “Tita” Ahuna, Mike Ban, Jerry Campany, Bobby Command, Greg Gonsalves, Jordan Helle, Paul Honda, Stacy Kaneshiro, Wes Nakama, Josh Pacheco, Barbara “Bobbie” Perry, Kalani Takase and Fran Villarmia-Kahawai.
Normally, the Hall of Honor athletes are feted with a banquet at the Dole Canneries’ Pomaikai Ballrooms. There will be no dinner this year due to the health crisis. This year, as usual, stories and photos of the honorees will be in a four-page spread in the Star-Advertiser. The tentative publication date is next Sunday.
Go to HawaiiPrepWorld.com now and Star-Advertiser.com,and PickledMangoHawaii.blogspot.com later Monday for more stories on the 2020 Hall of Honor. HawaiiPrepWorld.com is also filled with stories of past Hall of Honor classes.
2020 Hawaii Hall of Honor inductees
>> Nanea Estrella, Lahainaluna (wrestling)
>> Alfred Failauga, Waipahu (football)
>> Chenoa Frederick, Kamehameha-Hawai’i (track and field, soccer)
>> Laakea Gonsalves, Kapa’a (soccer, football, volleyball)
>> Christina Hicks, Punahou (water polo, swimming)
>> Caiyle Kaupu, Konawaena (basketball)
>> Legend Matautia, Punahou (football, wrestling, judo, track and field)
>> Elena Oglivie, ‘Iolani (volleyball)
>> Kysen Terukina, Kamehameha (wrestling, soccer)
>> Joshua Tihada, Lahainaluna (football, basketball)
>> Christmas Togiai, Kamehameha (basketball, volleyball)
>> Roman Wilson, Saint Louis (football, track and field)