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Kolbe Irei pumps iron, finishes 2nd in GCAA tourney

By Paul Honda on September 24, 2020

A month into his new chapter, Kolbe Irei has been outmuscling the competition. The Roosevelt graduate, now at UC Irvine, finished tied for second place in the GCAA Amateur Series in Beaumont, Calif., a tournament that drew the best college golfers in the country. He finished at 9-under par, two strokes behind Cameron Henry. Irei led going into the final round. “I’m playing five, 10 times better than I was in OIA season. I’m doing a lot more prep,” Irei […]

MAY 1, 2014: Moanalua’s John Oda picks up second state golf title

By Jerry Campany on May 1, 2020

No matter how many great courses John Oda, Paul Samiere and Kyle Suppa go on to play on, they can point to Turtle Bay’s Palmer Course as a place that helped them on their journey. On this day in 2014, Moanalua’s Oda beat Punahou’s Samiere and Suppa in a playoff to win his second individual state golf title. The Buffanblu took the team title. Oda won the playoff on a quick downhill putt. Oda finished his high school career with […]

APRIL 28, 2003: Moanalua’s Ayumi Hori doubles up on OIA titles

By Jerry Campany on April 28, 2020

On this day in 2002, Ayumi Hori of Moanalua became the first girl to win multiple individual OIA golf championships. Hori shot a 76 at Turtle Bay’s Palmer course to win by four strokes. She also won the title as a freshman but slipped to fifth as a sophomore and lost in a playoff as a junior. She was an important part of three team titles, though, all under different head coaches. Chase Chulakote of Kailua won the boys championship […]


APRIL 17, 1974: Wendell Tom wins state golf tournament

By Jerry Campany on April 17, 2020

On this day in 1974, Wendell Tom gave McKinley its only HHSAA golf title. Tom, a senior, beat Leilehua sophomore Kalua Makalena at Kuulima. The Tigers had never had a golf champion before and haven’t had one since. Tom went on to play at USC with major champions Scott Simpson and Craig Stadler. He was inducted into the Hawaii Golf Hall of Fame in 2018, joining third-place finisher Clyde Rego. Tom, who finished eighth in the state as a junior, […]

One by one, prep golfers see favorite courses close shop

By Paul Honda on March 22, 2020

It was too good to last for Kolbe Irei and other high school golfers. When schools suspended classes and spring sports due to the COVID-19 virus, student-athletes in most sports were left hanging without any way, any place to keep working out. The exception was golf, which is off campus. Then the municipal courses shut down. For Irei, a Roosevelt senior who won the OIA’s first three tournaments, there was a sanctuary at his nearby golf course, Oahu Country Club. […]

The last sanctuary: Kolbe Irei still gets his swings in

By Paul Honda on March 20, 2020

A little normalcy is what many athletes are craving during this COVID-19 crisis. Kolbe Irei is counting his blessings. The Roosevelt senior won his first three OIA tournaments this spring before schools were closed. He also got in the Hawaii State Amateur tourney, finishing second. But the day to day remains mostly the same. Irei took a four-day break before hitting the links at his home course, Oahu Country Club, on Thursday. Trades 5-15 mph. Overcast. Even if weather had […]

VIDEO: Roosevelt golfer Kolbe Irei rates Hawaii’s toughest courses

By Paul Honda on March 10, 2020

At the end of a lengthy Q&A session, Roosevelt senior Kolbe Irei chats about the many courses he has played on, often with his father, Roy. Irei was featured in Tuesday’s Star-Advertiser. He has already won all three OIA regular-season tournaments at Ala Wai, where he carded a 66, Hoakalei (69) and Oahu Country Club (66).

Q&A: Roosevelt golfer Kolbe Irei is the ‘Miracle Baby’

By Paul Honda on March 10, 2020

His parents got to witness a miracle years ago. Roy and Avis had no idea that their son, a little boy dubbed “Miracle Baby” by his doctor, would become one of the best junior golfers in Hawaii. Kolbe Irei is staking new territory for Roosevelt as a two-time OIA runner-up who has now won the first three tournaments of the regular season. His 66 at Oahu Country Club on a blustery Monday morning is the latest in a hot streak […]

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