Saints’ Keliinoi looking forward to life at UH

St. Francis' Kaena Keliinoi, who signed with Hawaii on Wednesday, was hit by a pitch to earn a walk-off win over Konawaena in the state tournament earlier this year. Photo by Dennis Oda/Star-Advertiser.

If signing the most important document of your life at 6 in the morning isn’t memorable enough, maybe the preparation is.

Kaena Keliinoi found that out this morning, commuting from Waianae to the Hawaii Convention Center for the National Letter of Intent signing ceremony hosted by Education 1st. The standout catcher at Division II state champion St. Francis signed her document to play softball for Hawaii.

Kellinoi, Roosevelt’s Maya Nakamura and Kapolei’s Cira Bartolotti all signed with UH to play softball at the ceremony.

“I had to wake up at 3 to do my hair and do all the leis. We ate at Zippy’s in town and got to the Convention Center at 5:20,” she said.

Then it was time for school once the signing ceremony ended around 7:20 a.m. It was almost 10 a.m. when she got a bit of a breather between classes. She was in AP English and AP Government this morning.

“I just have to get through one class then I can take a nap,” said Keliinoi, who is looking forward to living on the UH campus soon.

“I’m happy to know that I won’t have to wake up early every morning,” she said.

Keliinoi enjoyed paddling on the school team last winter.

“It’s still undecided for paddling. It’s fun and it keeps me in shape. My arms got stronger for softball. I want to be in top condition for college,” she said.

Keliinoi was one of two Saints to make the Honolulu Star-Advertiser All-State first team last season.

For the full list of student-athletes who signed letters of intent this morning, click here.


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