Loud cheers erupted at the Leilehua gym as Baldwin freshman Kahilihiwa Joy pinned Kamehameha’s Kysen Terukina in the semifinals of the Officials tournament.
Joy was down 5-0 when he pulled off the pin of Terukina, who won the state championship at 113 pounds last season and is ranked No. 4 in Hawaii Prep World’s pound-for-pound rankings.
One of Joy’s assistants told the freshman soon after the match that it wasn’t a fluke.
After the momentous win, a crowd of fans from Maui also hugged Joy, who crouched down twice and looked at the ground, apparently to gather his thoughts.
“He had me in a bar and let go of my arm, so I just reversed it and got him hooked on the cradle and I just held him there,” Joy said. “I don’t know. I just feel super happy right now. I can’t believe I just did that. Coming in to here, I thought I wasn’t going to do so good, but I came here and wrestled my best, wrestled my all. All thanks to my coaches.”
Kahilihiwa Joy, who will wrestle in the finals later today, is the brother of Laakea Joy, who placed second to Aiea’s Brandon Burgos in the 160-pound class at states last season.