APRIL 6, 1973: OIA West schools refuse to play

On this date in 1973, the adults ruined it for some of the children.

Leeward District Superintendent Domingo Los Banos announced that schools under his purview (Campbell, Pearl City, Nanakuli, Waipahu and Waianae) would not participate in any high school sports as long as the teacher’s strike lasts.

OIA czar William Smithe had a simple solution, telling athletes at those schools that they would forfeit any games missed because of the district’s decision. HHSAA boss Tom Kiyosaki sided with Smithe, saying that all state tournaments would proceed as planned.

But they weren’t complete state tournaments. The BIIF, MIL and KIF all suspended activities for those 18 days and the state tennis tournament was held with only Oahu athletes. David Ishii of Kauai won the state golf tournament, but no boys from the Big Island or Maui showed up. His 10-stroke margin of victory stood as the largest until Jun Ho Won of Moanalua matched it against a full field in 2017.

After two days, Los Banos and the Leeward principals reversed their decision and allowed their schools to play baseball. But golf and tennis tournaments were already damaged.

The strike was in its fifth day, and lasted 18 days.


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