Kaiser’s Tiare Ikei wrestled to a national title in Irving, Texas, last weekend.
Ikei, who was representing Team Hawaii, won the 49-kilogram (approximately 108 pounds) division in the FILA Cadet Women’s Freestyle division at the 2018 United World Wrestling Women’s Nationals.
In the final, Ikei defeated Peyton Prussin of Team Nevada two matches to none. In the first bout, Ikei won by pin in 1:28. In the second one, Ikei won by technical fall, 10-0.
Ikei, who will be a senior for the Cougars in the fall, is the reigning Hawaii state champion in the 112-pound division. In February, she beat Kamehameha’s Ashley Gooman 4-1 in the state final match.
“Tiare is blessed to walk away with her first national title,” Chad Ikei, a strength and conditioning coach and Tiare’s father, said over the phone Wednesday. “When you get to that level, you can never underestimate any of the girls there. There were a lot of nationally-ranked girls. I counted 11 nationally ranked out of 52 in her division. She went in prepared physically and mentally.
“That first national title is always going to be a surprise, and you never know — a second and a third one will be harder to get each time. She is taking it for what it’s worth and enjoying the moment. She came back and got right on the mat.”
Ikei will be competing as a cadet for Team USA in the Pan-Am Championships in Guatemala City, May 25-27, and in the World Championships, July 2-8, in Zagreb, Croatia.
Also last weekend, Kahuku senior Teniya Alo, also representing Team Hawaii, placed second in the FILA Junior Women’s Freestyle division at 59kg (130 pounds) in Irving, Texas.
Alo, a three-time Hawaii state high school champion, lost in the final in two matches to Brenda Reyna of Team Illinois, 15-4 and 8-6.
Team Hawaii (formed out of a handful of clubs on Oahu) fared quite well in Texas, with a total of 17 wrestlers placing in the top eight.
Four Team Hawaii wrestlers who also compete in high school here (Moanalua junior Lexi Tupuola, Mililani sophomore Kennedy Javier, Kapolei junior Keely Oyadomari, and Kaiser sophomore Katie Heim) did not place.
Four Team Hawaii placers — 65-pound Novice Women’s Freestyle champion Chloe Obuhanych, Adriana Daoang, Angelina Daoang and Flavia Nagatani — do not compete at the high school level yet.
2018 WOMEN’S NATIONALS
Irving, Texas, May 11-13
FILA Cadet Women’s Freestyle
46kg (101 pounds)
>> Alejandra Corral (Aiea sophomore), sixth place
>> Allicia Mahoe (Kapolei junior), seventh place
49kg (108 pounds)
>> Tiare Ikei (Kaiser junior), first place
53kg (117 pounds)
>> Alana Vivas (Kamehameha junior), fourth place
>> Ashley Gooman (Kamehameha junior), fifth place
>> Skye Realin (Kamehameha freshman), seventh place
61kg (134 pounds)
>> Paige Respicio (Kamehameha sophomore), fifth place
69kg (152 pounds)
>> Kelani Corbett (Leilehua junior), third place
FILA Junior Women’s Freestyle
55kg (121 pounds)
>> Macy Higa (Roosevelt senior), fifth place
57kg (126 pounds)
>> Rosalani Ikei (Kaiser senior), seventh place
59kg (130 pounds)
>> Teniya Alo (Kahuku senior), second place
62kg (137 pounds)
>> Gabrielle Garcia (from California wrestling with Team Hawaii), seventh place
65kg (143 pounds)
>> Angela Peralta (formerly of Campbell and Radford, now with Menlo College), seventh place
72kg (159 pounds)
>> Kelani Corbett (Leilehua junior), fourth place
>> Mahealani Ramirez (formerly of Aiea), seventh place
Novice Women’s Freestyle
>> Adriana Dauang, third place
>> Chloe Obuhanych, first place
>> Angelina Daoang, third place
Schoolgirls Women’s Freestyle
>> Flavia Nagatani, fourth place