STATES: Perez upsets state champ Keahi

Moanalua's Gabrielle Perez knocked off Lahainaluna's Kauanoe Keahi 5-4 in the 132-pound quarterfinals of the state wrestling championships Wednesday at Blaisdell Arena. Keahi won the 138-pound state title a year ago. Dennis Oda / Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

Moanalua’s Gabrielle Perez knocked off state champion Kauanoe Keahi of Lahainaluna 5-4 in the 132-pound quarterfinals at the state championships on Wednesday.

Keahi won the state 138-pound division a year ago and is wrestling down a class this year. Keahi is also a two-time MIL champion.

Perez moves on to the semifinals Thursday against ILH champion Paige Respicio of Kamehameha.


“She dug deep and she believes in herself and didn’t give up,” said Darren Reyes, Perez’s coach with Na Menehune. “She gave up a takedown at the end, but got back up and did what she normally does and got that score (the winning escape). That’s the hustle she normally instills in herself. Gabby’s special. Hopefully we can go all the way with that.”

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