In the end, the neighbor islands didn’t really want an extended stay in Honolulu.
A proposal to allow all teams to play a minimum of three games in team sports at state championships was shot down by the Hawaii High School Athletic Association executive board Monday.
The five leagues voted on myriad recommendations that came from the Hawaii Interscholastic Athletic Directors Association conference, which concluded on Saturday. Most of the recommendations were rubber-stamped by the board. However, the measure to give all teams at least three games at state tourneys — approved at HIADA by a 47-35 vote — failed to even reach vote.
The Big Island Interscholastic Federation motioned, but there was no second, not by the Maui Interscholastic League nor the Kauai Interscholastic Federation.
With the Oahu Interscholastic Association and Interscholastic League of Honolulu voting by block — unlike the sometimes independent direction of HIADA balloting — the recommendation died. It was another classic example of a measure taking hours, then days of debate at HIADA, only to be killed by the HHSAA board in mere seconds.
STATEWIDE TRANSFER RULE TABLED
The Hawaii High School Athletic Association executive board closed its doors on two proposals: expansion of the D-II tourney from eight to 12 berths when the number of participating schools exceeds 29, and full obligation to the state transfer rule regardless of school mission starting in the 2012-13 school year.
The first was voted down, with gender equity issues being one of the main concerns.
The proposal to require all schools to abide by the statewide transfer rule regardless of school mission was tabled. An amendment to change the language from “transfer” to “eligibility” passed. The issue will be handled later.
“We’re going to wait to see how the ILH deals with it,” HHSAA executive director Chris Chun said.
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"We’re disappointed. Our (neighbor island) teams make reservations for hotel and transportation (for the duration of a tournament). This would’ve given them more opportunities to play," BIIF executive director Lyle Crozier said.
BIIF president Robert Diercks was beyond annoyed. "It would be the same of Oahu teams that come to the neighbor islands," he said. "I was taken aback by this. I wanted to second my own motion."
Though Seabury Hall athletic director Steve Colflesh was the most persistent proponent of the proposal when it came to the general assembly floor at HIADA, his league didn’t support it Monday.
"In our league, we were debating. There’s cost and supervision for athletes for three days," MIL executive director Joe Balangitao said. "It was brought up to see how the state sees it. Some schools felt if they lost, they’d be going home. They would be OK. For some other schools, it’s a money issue. You can see both sides. Motivating the athletes to play might be tough."
Another proposal that failed to pass through the HHSAA executive board would have allowed all Division II team sports championships to rotate to the neighbor islands. The ILH and OIA rejected the proposal, outnumbering the BIIF, KIF and MIL. The measure had support from HHSAA executive director Christopher Chun, who does not have a ballot.
"We’ll keep trying," Crozier said. "(Chun) knows the (financial) records of how we’ve drawn on the neighbor islands."
Chun noted that D-II soccer would generate more revenue off Oahu.
"On Oahu, we charge for one (D-II) game, the championship game. That’s the game for the whole (D-II) tournament. If we move to Maui, we can charge for every game at Kamehameha-Maui. For volleyball this year, Kamehameha-Maui didn’t charge us for anything. It’s all income there," he said.
Mililani principal and OIA president Dr. John Brummel was insistent. Almost all D-II soccer matches are played on the outlying fields at Waipio Peninsula Soccer Stadium.
"I believe we’re missing the boat, we should be charging everybody who drives into the state soccer tournament, not just people who go into the stadium. We’re missing out on all kinds of revenue. 9 out of 10 games are not in the main stadium," he said.
HHSAA official Meredith Maeda, presiding over the meeting, said, "If the D-II (state tournament) was moved to a neighbor island, then this question would not come up."
"At Kamehameha-Maui," Chun added, "every D-II team would be playing in the stadium."
Seconds later, the proposal was rejected by the ILH and OIA.