The final of the Title Guaranty/HHSAA Girls Water Polo Championships between host Kamehameha and Punahou scheduled for Saturday was postponed until Monday because of a death in the swimming community.
According to Kamehameha water polo coach Anthony Cabrera, a female swimmer at Moanalua High School died earlier in the day after competing in a meet at Kapolei Aquatics Center.
The Na Menehune senior competed with the Kamehameha Swim Club and has a twin brother who swims for Kamehameha and KSC.
“A lot of our girls grew up swimming together with (her), so they swam club for a number of years with her and then her brother attends Kamehameha,” Cabrera said.
Someone at Kamehameha’s pool, who asked not to be identified, said the individual was in distress after a distance race and efforts to revive her failed.
The HHSAA posted a tweet saying the match between ILH rivals was called off about an hour before Saturday’s 6 p.m. start time.
Some players for Kamehameha and Punahou were crying near the pool while in their swimsuits.
“They’re OK. Our guys know the Kamehameha people really well, too, so they’ve gotten together and tried to support each other,” said Punahou coach Ken Smith, who added that some of his water polo players also compete for the Kamehameha Swim Club.
Cabrera said: “They are as OK as can be, if that makes sense. It’s a difficult situation. A number of the girls grew up with her, so it’s a tough situation for them. They’re dealing with it together as a team.”
The start time for Monday’s title match is 6 p.m.
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