KAPA‘A — The Kawaihau Community Little League Majors All-Stars, coached by Allen Mundon, Travis Shigeta, Ioane Makakani, and Kaili Panui, will be leaving the island on June 30 to participate in the Hawai‘i Little League District 1 playoffs.
Fundraising efforts to help offset the costs of the travel to O‘ahu started over the weekend as the team’s fundraising tent popped up at the Bryan J. Baptiste Sports Park near the tennis courts.
“I’m really hoping this team does well at District 1,” said Mandi Pani in a phone conversation, Monday. “Two weeks following the District 1 tournament, Kawaihau has a chance of a lifetime to host the Hawai‘i Little League Majors Division state tournament at the Main Diamond starting July 15.”
The Hawai‘i Little League District 1 covers windward O‘ahu and Kaua‘i and includes the teams Kahalu‘u, Kailua American, Kainalu, Kaneohe, and Kawaihau.
District 1 playoffs is the first step toward a journey that can end at the Little League World Series, and in order to participate in the journey, Kawaihau needs to win District 1 to advance to the state tournament.
Hawai‘i currently has five districts, and the champions of these districts meet in a double-elimination tournament that decides the state championship — this year, that tournament will be hosted by Kawaihau, starting July 15.
The Hawai‘i champion advances to the West Region tournament in San Bernanrdino, California with the West Region winner advancing to the Little League World Series in South Williamsport, Pennsylvania.
In the past, 14 teams from the Hawai‘i leagues have participated in the Little League World Series, including the state’s most recent qualifier, the Honolulu Little League in 2021. Hawai‘i has produced three Little League World Series Champions, including the West O‘ahu Little League in 2006, the Waipio Little League in 2008, and the Honolulu Little League in 2018.
Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-0453 or email@example.com.
Source: The Garden Island