An unseeded team winning the Datahouse/HHSAA Softball State Championships in Division I was nothing new.
The team to do so, however, indeed was.
The ‘Iolani Raiders became the fifth straight non-league champion to win the state softball title on Saturday night, rolling up 50 runs in four impressive wins to capture the third state championship in school history and first since going back-to-back in 1999 and 2000.
The ILH’s first state softball champion in D-I since 2013 ends the year ranked No. 1 in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser Softball Top 10 released today.
It’s the first time in the nine-year history of the poll the Raiders have been ranked No. 1. It hadn’t happened at any point during a season, much less at the end.
It snapped a streak of nine straight weeks at No. 1 for Campbell, which is the second-longest run at the top since the Sabers were No. 1 for 10 straight weeks from 2015-16.
The Raiders are now the 11th different team to be ranked No. 1 in the state at some point between 2011 and ’19.
In another first for the rankings, Baldwin is the first neighbor-island team to finish a season ranked in the top four. The Bears are tied for the No. 4 spot with Campbell after beating the Sabers 11-2 in the quarterfinals, handing Campbell its only loss of the season.
Division II state champion St. Francis finished No. 6 after winning its second straight crown. Last year, the Saints finished at No. 4.
Roosevelt, Waianae, Maryknoll and Kaiser round out the Top 10 with the Seariders finishing in the season-ending Top 10 for the first time.
Mililani, which had a streak of 26 consecutive state-tournament appearances snapped this year, failed to finish the season in the Top 10 for the first time since 2011.
Leilehua finished No. 2 after earning the No. 2 ranking in the preseason Top 10 while preseason No. 1 Punahou finished No. 3.
Kohala (five), Lahainaluna (five), Kapolei (three), Kamehameha-Hawaii (two), and Mid-Pacific (two) also received votes.
Honolulu Star-Advertiser Top 10
|Updated: Sept. 9|