Bears hold MIL soccer title two years running

KSM 0 - BHS 1

Ilihiwa+Keawekane+%2810%29+guards+a+defender+in+last+night%27s+game.+The+Baldwin+Bears+triumphed+over+the+Warriors+in+the+last+minutes+of+the+game%2C+hanging+onto+their+MIL+title+for+the+second+year+in+a+row.+The+final+score+was+1-0.

Photo by Alyssa Urayanza

Ilihiwa Keawekane (10) guards a defender in last night's game. The Baldwin Bears triumphed over the Warriors in the last minutes of the game, hanging onto their MIL title for the second year in a row. The final score was 1-0.

The Baldwin Bear’s girls soccer team took the MIL title for the second year in a row after scoring the only goal of the night against the Kamehameha Warriors, last night at War Memorial Stadium.

“I think we did really well. We just had to finish on our opportunities,” KS Warrior Kamalei Roback said. “I think we did better this year than we did last year. We came together as a team more, but we just couldn’t get the results.”

As soon as the whistle blew, both teams went at it, coming out aggressive and physical. The ball constantly switched back and forth between players, pushing both teams backwards. There were several close shots on goal from both the Bears and the Warriors with equally as many saves from the goalies.

During the game, the Warriors had two penalty kicks, one during the first half and one during the second half. They did not score on either of them. The Bears, on the other hand, had one penalty kick in the last minutes of the game. The kick was taken by Skylar Littlefield and found its way to the back of the net.

Following this goal, the Warriors moved the ball quickly trying to even the score before the end of the game. Unfortunately, the Bears had a plan of their own. Since they were up by one, and it was almost the end of the game, they stalled the ball. Players do this by kicking long balls or kicking the ball out of bounds on purpose. By doing this, they can run the time, decreasing the amount of time the opposing team has to score.

The game came to an end with a score of 1-0 with the Baldwin Bears holding onto their MIL title once again.

“We needed to pull out a win to [place first in] the MIL. Anything less than a win, we would end up in second,” KSM head coach Jayson Nakasone said. “The strategy is to always play our game and to not change it up for any team, and we did for the most part. For the most part we executed what we wanted to. We had a ton of shots on goal, and it just didn’t go our way.”

Despite losing this game, the Warriors came in second place overall and will still proceed into the state championships.

According to coach Nakasone, the state tournament takes the top two teams of the MIL championships. Since Baldwin took first place, they are one of the seeded teams, allowing them to skip a game and go straight into the quarterfinals.

“It’s always a battle between us two [schools]. It’s been coming down to the end in these past few years…it always comes down to the last game, and it’s always a battle. It’s two great teams, great girls on both teams, the coaching staff. Kamehameha is never easy to beat,” Baldwin head coach Tia Medeiros said. “It means a lot to the girls, and for them to come out, not only as MIL champs, but winning the game because we could’ve tied, but it wouldn’t have been as satisfying. So coming out and winning this game, it means a whole lot to these girls, and I’m really happy for them that they get to celebrate this win.”

The Kamehameha boys soccer team tied against the Bears 3-3 in the game before the girls with the Warriors coming out as MIL champs, and the Bears coming in second.