Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Final Girls XC Prediction From Anonymous

2007 Girls State XC: Show Me, Don’t Tell Me

League champions:
BIIF: Tialana Greenwell, fr, (Honokaa)
ILH: Haley Abing, jr, (La Pietra)
KIF: Caralyn Broyles, jr, (Waimea)
MIL: Hailey Grossman, so, (Seabury)
OIA: Kristen Ali-Keith, so, (Mililani)
Where are all the seniors???

Consistency, that’s why I have Haley Abing (La Pietra) ahead of Kristin Ali-Keith (Mililani). This was no easy decision to make and I mean no disrespect to Ms. Keith.
In head to head competition it’s Keith 3, Abing 1. If you include the ILH/OIA combined championship results, it’s 3-2, Keith. However, Keith’s victories have come in the early part of the season, while Abing’s have come in the later part.

Either way, the race at Kapalua won’t be decided until the very end and don’t forget about Bailey Massenburg (King K). She fell ill just before the MIL championship and the question now is, is she 100% healthy and race sharp? She ran 19:48 at Kapalua waaay back on Sep. 15 and the course has since been redesigned to be a little more “friendly.”

I totally understand if you don’t agree with my rankings. Every course is different, every race is different and that is why we run the races. Bottom line, this is just one person’s opinion.

1. Haley Abing, jr, (La Pietra)
2. Kristin Ali-Keith, so, (Mililani)
3. Bailey Massenburg, jr, (King K)
4. Hailey Grossman, so, (Seabury)
5. Amanda Tamanaha, jr, (St.Andrews)
6. Jenna Wong, so, (Iolani)
7. Tialana Greenwell, fr, (Honokaa)
8. Claire Hann, so, (Maryknoll)
9. Dayna Domingo, jr, (Pearl City)
10. Maile Scarpino, so, (Iolani)
Again, where are the seniors???

From the start, Iolani was my #1 pick for the team honors but without Kimberly Pugliese (Iolani) in the line up I’m going with Punahou. Without any front runners Punahou must rely on packing, keeping the spread from their 1 – 5 runners to a minimum which they successfully did (<60s) at the ILH Championship. For the #2 spot I’m leaning towards Kamehameha (Oahu) with Leilehua right behind while Iolani drops to #4, but their future is looking really good.

What more surprises are in store come November 2? Can the Leilehua girls run the race of their lives and upset Punahou to win the team honors? It would be a first for a public school since 1980!!! Will the Leilehua boys become the first public school to win the team honors since 1982?

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Boys XC Update from Anonymous

The league championship meets are now completed so here is an update on Hawaii boys cross-country. Bryce Jenkins’ and Paul Williams’ performances on a tough CORP course were impressive. They looked poised to finish 1-2 for Leilehua on an even tougher Kapalua course this Friday on Maui. The Big Island boys were also impressive at the BIIF championship meet held on the Kamehameha course near Hilo. Garrett Prinslow, Kealakehe, Mark Turner, Hilo, Jake Shiraki, Honoka’a, and Nick Ucker, Christian Liberty, all ran fine times on a course that may be a bit easier than CORP. A week ago on Maui at Kapalua, Reid Hunter, King Kekaulike, looked comfortable running 17:10. He hasn’t been pushed all year and he’s running at home. Reid could pull off the upset.


1. Bryce Jenkins, Leilehua
2. Paul Williams, Leilehua
3. Mark Turner, Hilo
4. Garrett Prinslow, Kealakehe
5. Nick Ucker, Christian Liberty
6. Jake Shiraki, Honoka’a
7. Reid Hunter, King Kekaulike
8. Chris Burniske, Punahou
9. Dawnons Vorderbruegge, Kaiser
10. Matthew Nakamoto, HBA


Preston Vierra, Honoka’a
Nick Haggemann, Keaau
Jordan Lerma, KSH
Eli Hart, HPA
Kensuke Taylor, Kailua
Patrick Understellar, Keaau
Christian Putegnat, Campbell

The boys from Leilehua are the odds-on favorite to win the team title. They have 2 top runners plus their 3rd, 4th and 5th runners all appear on paper to be faster than anyone else's. If they can handle the pressure and Kapalua, they should run away with the trophy. Honoka’a from the Big Island is my pick for team runner-up. They also have 2 top runners and an excellent 3rd with their 4th and 5th guys the equal to any other teams’. ILH powers Punahou, Iolani and Kamehameha will round out the top 5 teams.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Comment from Coach Al - Girls XC

Please remember that these posts predicting the XC States are really only someone's opinion, for fun and to create interest in the sport. Although I'm asked constantly to publish my thoughts on what is going to happen, I am not going to do that. I've been coaching at Iolani this year and don't feel it's fair or right for me to talk about this possibly knowing some things that aren't really public knowledge.

I do want to say, though, that it is my understanding that out of the 7 Maryknoll varsity runners, 3 are not Maryknoll students, including Haley Abing. I will say that I wouldn't be surprised at all to see Maryknoll win the ILH championships. They really are an awesome team right now, and I keep thinking to myself, what would they be like if Julie had run this year. Wow!

The point is, though, that Maryknoll will not have a scoring team for States so they will not be in the mix in the team championships.

Update from Anonymous - 10/18/07 - Girls XC

2007 Girls State XC: Fire at Punahou

Impressive! Five (5) girls under the old course record at the Punahou Invite and another group of three (3) within 10 seconds of the old record!. Haley Abing (La Pietra) sets the new standard at 19:31 while super soph Claire Hann (Maryknoll/19:40), runs to a new sophomore class record and lets everyone know she’s a contender for the individual honors. Also under the old record of 19:51 were, Jenna Wong (Iolani/ 19:47), Amanda Tamanaha (St. Andrews/ 19:48) and Dayna Domingo (Pearl City/ 19:49).
Congrats and a high five to all those girls mentioned above and the best part, none of them are seniors!

Meanwhile, a little over 200 miles southeast of Oahu a young frosh by the name of Tialana Greenwell (Honokaa) has been running unchallenged on the Big Island. Her most recent performance;19:56 at Waiakea. What can she do when challenged?

It’s league championship time for Maui and Kauai this weekend and Bailey Massenburg (King K) has been very quiet since her 19:48 run on Sep. 15 at Kapalua while Hailey Grossman (Seabury) has gained confidence with her 19:24 on Sep 29. Also, not to be overlooked are Kaahumanu Rozet (KSM) and Leah Lunblad (Seabury).

For the team honors I’m staying with Iolani but the #2 spot between Kamehameha (Oahu) and Punahou is now dead even with huge improvements by Chelsea Oda (Punahou/ 20:07) and Kristi Torkildson (Punhaou/ 20:29), but let’s not forget that little school called Maryknoll. Who?

Bottom line: Maui, Nov 2, be there or you’ll be sorry.

Top 10 Individual: (Subject to change at anytime)
1. Bailey Massenburg (King K)
2. Haley Abing (La Pietra)
3. Kristin Ali-Keith (Mililani)
4. Hailey Grossman (Seabury)
5. Claire Hann (Maryknoll)
6. Jenna Wong (Iolani)
7. Amanda Tamanaha ((St. Andrews)
8. Dayna Domingo (Pearl City)
9. Kimberly Pugliese (Iolani)
10. Maile Scarpino (Iolani)

Looking to move up: (in no particular order)
Tialana Greenwell, fr (Honokaa)
Amelia Linsky, jr, (Iolani)
Chelsea Oda, sr (Punahou)
Emma Broderick, sr, (KSO)
Kaahumanu Rozet, sr, (KSM)
Chaylene Guinto, fr, (Maryknoll)
Dara Pagaduan, sr, (KSO)
Lea Lundblad (Seabury)
Malia Kagawa, sr (Maryknoll)
Kelly Opedal, jr, (KSO)
Savannah Lowrie, jr, (Leilehua)

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Outlook for Hawaii Boys Cross Country 2007

Hi running fans. Hot off the presses from a knowledgeable cross-country fan. This was NOT written by Coach Al, so you are welcome to make comments on the blog, but please don't inundate me with emails!


I’ve read so much about Hawaii girls cross-country that I felt it only fair to write about the boys who have been running some excellent times largely unnoticed by the running community.

The Big Island and Oahu boys are the class of Hawaii cross-country in 2007. Maui has one quality runner, Reid Hunter of King Kekaulike, but he has run so infrequently that it’s hard to judge him. I have not seen any Kauai boys who look like they can crack the top 20.

Mark Turner, Hilo, and Jake Shiraki, Honoka’a have both run 16:06. Two more Big Island boys have run in the 16:20s—Nick Ucker, Christian Liberty and Nick Hagemann, Kea’au. Bryce Jenkins, Leilehua, is the defending champ and won at Punahou last week in a fine time of 16:28. All in all 11 boys from the Big Island and Oahu have gone under 17 minutes.

I have a feeling that the course and conditions at Kapalua will favor the Big Island so my top 10 picks are as follows:

1. Mark Turner, Hilo
2. Bryce Jenkins, Leilehua
3. Jake Shiraki, Honoka’a
4. Nick Ucker, Christian Liberty
5. Chris Burniske, Punahou
6. Nick Hagemann, Kea’au
7. Nathan Nakatsuka, Kamehameha, Oahu
8. Preston Vierra, Honoka’a
9. Matthew Nakamoto, HBA
10. Paul Williams, Leilehua

Garrett Prinslow, Kealakehe
Reid Hunter, King Kekaulike
Scott Motobu, Mid Pac
Dawson Vorderbruegge, Kaiser
Juan Miguel Silva, Leilehua
Jordan Lerma, Kamehameha, Hawaii
Patrick Understellar, Kea’au
Craig Kandler, Kaiser

The team championship should be very close with the 4th and 5th runners deciding who brings home the hardware. Leilehua looks like a close group of guys who have the team concept dialed in, and they look to have the best 4th and 5th runners plus Bryce. Nevertheless, you can’t count out the boys from Kamehameha who always rise to the occasion. Finally there is Honoka’a from the Big Island with two guys in the 16s and 2 more in the 17s. Here’s my top 5 team picks:
1. Leilehua
2. Kamehameha, Oahu
3. Honoka’a
4. Punahou
5. Iolani

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Update from Anonymous - 10/2/07 - Girls XC

2007 Girls State XC Update

This is tough, really, really tough. The top 6 girls are evenly matched and for me to rank one above the other leaves me feeling rather uncomfortable. Clearly there is no dominant leader in the state this year, which makes for a very exciting race in November.

Who has the better sprint speed among the top 5 girls? I lean towards Bailey Massenburg (King K) 4:54.69/ 1500 but Haley Abing (La Pietra) has the better 800 time. But then, without endurance, speed means nothing and who’s the State 3k champ? Hailey Grossman (Seabury), but hey, Jenna Wong (Iolani) did most of the work in that 3k race and this is XC, not track so who finished 2nd in cross country last year? Kristin Ali-Keith (Mililani), who looks really cool with her shades.

With the individual race being so close this year will the one week break the MIL have prior to the State race make a difference? Will the top girls from the ILH/ OIA back off somewhat during their league championships (with the blessing of their coach, of course)?

I say Iolani by a thump, not a squeak anymore, for the team honors but their #5 runner must perform up to her capability on race day. Kamehameha (Oahu) takes over the #2, spot by a squeak over Punahou but it’s still early enough and every course is different so don’t get mad if you don’t agree. This is just one person’s opinion and with the Kamehameha and Punahou Invites coming up some questions could be answered.

Top 10 Individual: (Subject to change at anytime)

1. Bailey Massenburg (King K)
2. Kristin Ali-Keith (Mililani)
3. Hailey Grossman (Seabury)
4. Haley Abing (La Pietra)
5. Jenna Wong (Iolani)
6. Claire Hann (Maryknoll)
7. Lea Lundblad (Seabury)
8. Kimberly Pugliese (Iolani)
9. Maile Scarpino (Iolani)
10. Amanda Tamanaha (St. Andrews)

Looking to move up: (in no particular order)
Emma Broderick, sr, (KSO)
Kaahumanu Rozet, sr, (KSM)
Amelia Linsky, jr, (Iolani)
Dara Pagaduan, sr, (KSO)
Dayna Domingo, jr, (Pearl City)
Tialana Greenwell, fr (Honokaa)
Kelly Opedal, jr, (KSO)
Savannah Lowrie, jr, (Leilehua)
Chelsea Oda, sr (Punahou)
Malia Kagawa, sr (Maryknoll)

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Salinas, California

Lea shown here training on Maui, Spring 2007.

Lea Lundblad, the freshman from Seabury Hall, opened her 2007 cross country season not in Hawaii, but in Salinas, California. She ran at the Earlybird Invitational, one of the most competitive, early season cross country meets in the state. With nearly 60 teams and 2,500 runners, Lundblad covered the hilly, 3 mile course, in 20:27 to earn her a second place individual medal. She was 4th overall. We will see Lundblad on Oahu when she will be competing at the upcoming Iolani Invitational.

Thursday, September 06, 2007


Hi all,

I've been asked numerous times to make a prediction on the girls' XC season. Because I am so close to the Iolani team, I have felt very uncomfortable doing it. Yes, I have my opinions, but they will remain unpublished.

But, that doesn't stop anyone else from giving their opinions. What follows is a prediction from an anonymous soothsayer. I don't know who wrote it. All I know is they are from the outer islands. Coach Al


2007 Girls State XC Outlook

Underclass women rule!!! The two lone seniors with a shot at the top podium are Kaahumanu Rozet (KSM) and Chelsea Oda (Punahou) with a huge bunch of juniors, super sophs and frosh in the hunt. Big names missing from last year are defending State XC champ Julie Besenbruch/ Maryknoll and Katie Pelliteri/ Iolani.

It’s going to come down to who’s “on” come race day. Race strategy, pacing and sprint speed will become a tremendous factor. This is one race I don’t want to miss come November 2!!!

Kaahumanu Rozet (KSM): injured during the 2006 xc, 4:51.46/ 1500. Made a huge improvement on the track from 2006 – 2007. Gave Chelsea Smith-Wishard (Kauai) a scare in the state 1500 race, so we know she has speed.

Chelsea Oda (Punahou): 9th/ 2005 State xc but was not 100% at the 2006 State xc, 5:07.16/ 1500, 10:48.66/ 3k. Has been hampered with injuries the last 2 xc seasons so her performance has been very erratic. On the track in 2007 we finally got a glimpse of the real Chelsea Oda. Has patience but a little more speed would help. Chelsea, stay healthy!

Haley Abing (La Pietra): 4th/ 2005 State xc but was not 100% at the 2006 State xc,
1500/ 4:56.91, 11:02.86/ 3k, 2:28.30/ 800. She’s good and with a bit more speed it could put her on the top podium.

Bailey Massenburg ( King K): 19th/ 2005 State xc as a frosh, was not 100% in 2006, 4:54.69/ 1500, 11:24.00/ 3k, 2:30.2/ 800. Can this girl make it to the top podium? Oh yeah!!! It would not surprise me if she dominated the xc/track season.

Maile Scarpino/ Iolani: 4:58.67/ 1500, 2:26.75/ 800. Needs more endurance but has enough speed to be a threat. If she did her “homework” over the summer she will challenge for the top spot.

Hailey Grossman/ Seabury: 8th/ 2006 State xc, 5:06.63/ 1500, 10:47.62/ 3k. The state 3k champ on the track and battling Kaahumanu Rozet (KSM) and Bailey Massenburg (King K) every weekend is a win/win/win for all three girls. With the MIL having a 2 week break before the State race this could be the deciding factor.

Kristin Ali-Keith/ Mililani: 2nd/ 2006 State xc, 10:56.76/ 3k, This girl fears no one and has no fear of pain, will this comeback to haunt her or help her?

Jenna Wong/ Iolani: 6th/ 2006 State xc, 5:04.68/ 1500, 10:50.81/ 3k. Needs more speed but makes up for it with patience and guts! Not afraid to take charge and go for it!

Kimberly Pugliese/ Iolani: She was always “up there” in the intermediate division but has been overshadowed by the other two frosh below.

Lea Lundblad/ Seabury: No stranger to xc/track racing as she dominated the intermediate division. With 62.41/ 400 speed, you don’t want to get into a sprint finish with this girl, unless your name is...

Kailea Tracy Visintainer/ Seabury: 58.73/ 400, How fast is 58.73? She would have won the State 400m race, as an 8th grader! This is the last person you want near you with 100m to go.

Top 10 Individual: Subject to change at anytime

1. Kaahumanu Rozet (KSM)
2. Chelsea Oda (Punahou)
3. Bailey Massenburg (King K)
4. Hailey Grossman (Seabury)
5. Kristin Ali-Keith (Mililani)
6. Haley Abing (La Pietra)
7. Maile Scarpino (Iolani)
8. Lea Lundblad (Seabury)
9. Kimberly Pugliese (Iolani)
10. Jenna Wong (Iolani)

Looking to move up: (in no particular order)
Dara Pagaduan, sr, (KSO)
Amelia Linsky, jr, (Iolani)
Malia Kagawa, sr, (Maryknoll)
Dana Domingo, jr, (Pearl City)
Farrah Madanay, jr, (Punahou)
Amanda Tamanaha, jr, (St. Andrews)
Kristi Torkildson, sr (Punahou)
Mari Carmichael, jr (Punahou)
Cheyane Kamai, jr, (KSO)
Emma Broderick, sr, (KSO)

For the team title, I say Iolani by a squeak. They have 4 good runners but their #5 could make or break their state title hopes. With Punahou’s depth and Chelsea Oda being a patient front runner don’t be surprised if Chelsea wins and Punahou repeats. Seabury Hall has 2 good runners but their #3, #4 and #5 is no match for Iolani’s #3, #4 and #5.

Monday, September 03, 2007

September 2007 - 1

ILH Cross-Country

On September 1, the ILH cross-country season opened with a practice meet at Waipio soccer peninsula. This meet is always very casual with no scoring. It is a good way to get everyone reacquainted with running and competing in the meets each week.

Weather-wise we were lucky. Yes, the course was wet, muddy and slow from torrential rains the night before, but at least the rain stopped before the 9am start.

There were 5 races - boys intermediates (2 miles), girls intermediates (2 miles), girls open (2 miles), jv/varsity boys (3 miles) and varsity girls (3 miles).

I admit that I pay much more attention to the girls races. Sorry guys. But, when you have 2 daughters running that tends to happen.

There has been a lot of anticipation on the girls' side of cross-country this year. Probably on the boys side too but I don't really know about it.

Some big things have happened on the girls side since last year. Julie (Maryknoll) is not running this year. Last year she was the dominant runner in the state. Also, Katie (Iolani) moved to the mainland due to a family relocation. Katie was a promising runner who will be missed greatly by Iolani.

There are also some new faces in the varsity ranks this year. Kimberly Pugliese, a top intermediate runner, is now a 9th grader and has transferred to Iolani. Kimberly will be a force. Also, Lea Lundblad, last year's Iolani Invitational winner at both Intermediate races, is now a varsity runner. Some think she will win States this year. She just might. Then there is Maile (Iolani) who is new to the running world. She had a very good track season last year and will also be in the mix at the top.

So, what happened on Saturday? A veteran of the running world, Haley Abing (Maryknoll, La Pietra), held off Maile in the closest finish of the day to win by about 1 yard. Kim and Jenna (both of Iolani) were close on Maile's heels. Maryknoll and Iolani dominated the top 20.

But, and this is a big but, Punahou did not run in the varsity race as they elected to run their varsity in the 2 mile open. Also, Kamehameha looked like they were just using this race as a normal training run.

In other words, some of the girls who I expect to be there at the end of the season, weren't in the varsity race, either at all or because they weren't really trying. There will be many changes as the season progresses.

August 2007 - 4

Varsity Football

On August 25, the Raiders took on Kalaheo in a pre-season, inter-league match up.

I love shooting football, but only when the light is good. Most varsity games are at Aloha Stadium this year, at night. Aloha Stadium's lights are not very photographer friendly. They are not very bright, and to make things even worse, they are inconsistent as some parts of the field are brighter than others.

So, I will try to do varsity football when the lighting, schedule and location work for me. I wish it were different, but that's the way it works out. The Intermediate football team will probably see me more as they have some games on weekdays in the afternoon which work much better for my schedule.

So, how about the game?

It was a hard fought game with Kalaheo dominating until late. Kalaheo's quarterback, Cody Von Appen, is an excellent athlete who gave our defense fits, especially with turning broken plays into substantial gains with his superb running.

The Raiders did make a game of it late and put themselves in a position to steal this game at the end, but Kalaheo held on for a 28-25 win.

August 2007 - 3


The water polo tournament was 6 days in a row. I also had 3 photographers working for me so the amount of photographs to process was incredible. I had 2 days to catch up on all the water polo work before jumping right into the Ann Kang Invitation Volleyball Tournament.

The Ann Kang Tournament is a wonderful, pre-season volleyball tournament that attracts some of the best volleyball teams in the country. This year there were 20 teams, 10 local, 10 from the mainland. The tournament is held at Iolani school, using both the upper and lower gym constantly.

I enjoy doing this tournament because it gives me a good idea of how good my beloved Lady Raiders are in relation to many other very good teams. This year it looks like Kamehameha (Oahu) has the State Championship firmly in it's grasp. A lot of things can happen between now and States, but if they stay healthy they are going to be very, very tough to beat.

Indoor volleyball is one of the toughest sports to photograph, especially when the light is marginal. There are really only 2 venues where I like to shoot indoor sports, Stan Sheriff (UH) and Kamehameha. There may be others that are this good but I haven't seen them. Most indoor high school gyms have very marginal lighting. If you've tried to shoot volleyball or basketball in marginal lighting, you know what I'm talking about. I've had a lot of practice so am able to get quite a few very good photos, but it sure would be more fun if the lighting was better.

Kamehameha, by the way, won this tournament with a pretty dominant victory over Redondo in the final. Redondo is ranked in the top 20 in the nation. Kamehameha is now ranked number 5. Wow!

August 2007 - 2

Water Polo

From August 7-12, I covered the Hawaiian Invitational Water Polo Tournament. This is a huge tournament played at 3 locations (Punahou, Iolani and CORP) with over 100 teams participating. There were a bunch of local teams, but many from the mainland, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

Water polo is a fun sport to cover photographically. The light is usually very good and there is constant action. The blue of the water gives the shots some really nice backgrounds and the splashes can look quite spectacular when caught just right.

August 2007 - 1

Fiddler on the Roof and Youth Basketball

Many people might not realize that I do cover some things besides sports. Not much, but there are a few things I do enjoy covering, like musicals that have nothing to do with sports. On August 1, I had a chance to cover the Fiddler on the Roof production at Hawaii Theatre. The kids did a great job and I had a great time shooting it.

A few days later I had a request to cover a youth basketball game. I usually only cover intermediate through varsity, but I have been getting quite a few requests from parents that get much coverage for one of their children, but none of their other because that child goes to a different school or participates in club sports. I do try to accommodate these requests if I can.

This game was held at Palolo gym - the Bulls vs the Heat. This was a U12 game with both boys and girls on the teams. The lighting was very, very strange. I never saw anything like it. Yellow? Green? Kept changing? The lighting level was pretty good, though, just the color hue was tough to deal with.

These event galleries can be reached at this link.

So where have you been Coach Al?

I had planned to take it easy the last few weeks. This is the only time of the year when there aren't a lot of big high school athletic events. Most teams are just practicing with games and matches just starting now.

So, what happens? I have 3 computers in the house, 2 of which are devoted to my business. One of those computers does 90% of the work. That computer died. I was able to remove the disk drives and copy them onto a giant external drive so I didn't lose any data. But, as anyone who has gone through setting up a new computer knows, there is a lot of work to do.

Just shopping for a new computer takes time. I bought a close to top-of-the line Dell which was delivered in a few days. I decided to get lots of memory, but only one huge disk drive (500 gig). Everything is very easily expandable. I just ordered another 500 gig internal drive. My plan is to have all programs on the C: drive, all data on the D: drive, and another 500 gig external drive for backup.

Another thing I learned through this challenging time is that USB external drives can not be plugged into a USB hub with other devices if you want them to perform well. I couldn't understand why my USB drive was just moping along when that same drive really hummed on my older, slower computer. When I read about how USB 2.0 works, I realized that I had about 8 devices already plugged into the hub and they all were competing for bandwidth. So, along with the 500 gig internal drive, I ordered a PCI USB 2.0 card. I will only plug the external drive into this card, nothing else, so it will have it's own "pipe". I don't expect the external drive to run as fast as the internal ones, but it should now be useable as a backup drive and occasionally for processing.

Currently I'm doing all processing on the internal C: drive. It's very fast but I don't like to mix programs and data on the same drive. As soon as the drive arrives I will move all data over.

I also hope to rebuild my dead computer. It is still very useable, at least it will be if I can get it running again.

I have done a few jobs in the last month to tell you about. Be back soon, I hope.

Coach Al

Monday, July 30, 2007

July 30, 2007 Update continued...

I've always wanted to cover a rodeo, but never had the chance, until this past Saturday. I noticed a listing for a rodeo put on by the Hawaii Women's Rodeo Association at the DK Ranch in Waimonalo. It was as much fun as I thought it would be and I hope to do more rodeos in the future. The women have a very nice website with lots of information, but I haven't found anything on the men's side. Please send me information if you have it. The photo galleries can be found here. Here's a few photos from the barrel racing competion.

It was then over to the CORP pool to cover the Aloha State Games swim meet. This meet really grew over last year's. A few photos from the meet follow. To reach the full gallery, please click

July 30, 2007 Update

The last 2 weeks have been different from my usual hectic pace. I still covered quite a few events, though, and had a lot of fun doing them.

First, it was the Hawaii International Cup Soccer tournament held at Waipio, sponsored by the Honolulu Bulls. The photo galleries can be found here. The tournament ran from a Thursday through Sunday. We were there Thursday, Friday and Sunday.

On Saturday, the summer track Relay Championships were held at Punahou School. It rained constantly. The kids didn't seem to mind the rain that much, but I did. Ugh... The track and field galleries for the whole summer can be found here.

The next week, it was the Aloha International Cup Soccer Tournament. This is another big soocer tournament held at Waipio, this time sponsored by Leahi. Photo galleries can be reached through this link.

Again, we couldn't stay the whole time at the soccer tournament because of another track meet, this time the Aloha State Games Track and Field Meet.

One thing that is really nice about the Aloha State Games track meet is there are some events that we don't see very often, namely javelin and hammer throw. I only get to see the javelin a few times a year, during the girls' heptathlon and the boys' decathlon, in addition to the Aloha State Games. But, the hammer throw has only been once a year, at this meet. Here's a photo of one of our few hammer throwers.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

2007 Hawaii International Cup Soccer

This summer has been quite varied so far. Some Iolani baseball, some Iolani basketball (boys and girls), a lot of USATF summer track meets, the Aloha State Games diving meet, the Keo Nakama swim meet, and the just completed Hawaii International Cup Soccer Tournament.

The HIC games either myself or my assistant covered were:


U11 Girls Bulls Red vs Ka-oi Cobras
U17 Girls Abbotsford Hurricanes vs Skovlunde IF
U19 Girls Bulls vs Ka'oi Laulina
U12 Boys Black vs Kona Heat
U12 Girls Ha'aheo vs Real Hawaii


U12 Boys Bulls Black vs Bulls White
U12 Girls So Cal Blues vs Ha'aheo
U14 Boys Honolulu Bulls vs Hawaii Rush B94 Nike
U11 Girls Honolulu Bulls Red vs Hawaii Rush
U17 Girls Abbotsford Hurricanes vs Real Hawaii


U16 Boys Bulls Red vs LJSA
U11 Girls Bulls Red vs Real Hawaii
U14 Boys Motiv-8 vs Hawaii Rush B94 Nike

On Saturday, we covered the USATF Relay Championships in Track and Field.

I will probably be covering some Aloha Cup soccer games. If you have interest in me covering your team, please email me.

All photos can be reached from my smugmug galleries. Please email me if you have any questions about my photos, collages or posters, or anything else about my business.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

So, where have you been?

Hi all,

I know I've been terribly negligent in posting to this blog. Hey, it's not like I've been lazy! But, yeah, I know there are a lot of you that want me to keep the blog up-to-date, and I really would like to also.

Doing the State Championships was really fun, but I really got tired by the end. I looked at the Track and Field Championships as the biggest event of the year for me and, ugh, I got sick. It might not have been so hard except that I had just done a bunch of State Championships right before it, girls basketball, baseball and girls water polo! I felt it coming as I stepped off the plane in Maui. I still enjoyed the meet tremendously, but it would have been much nicer doing it healthy.

Then I had so many orders for collages and posters to complete that I've been working straight out (with my daughter) to complete them all. The backlog is almost whittled down now, enough so I felt I could write a bit on the blog.

I've had quite a few requests to give my predictions for the top 20 in cross-country this year. I don't really know the boys well enough, and in most cases, I feel I know the girls too well, at least a bunch of them. I'm just not unbiased enough to do it and I'm in trouble no matter what I do. The Iolani team potentially has quite a few girls that will be top 20 this year. I just can't rate them. If I rate them high, everyone says I'm just biased. If I rate them low then they might be upset with me. So, I'm going to take the coward's way out and say, you want a top 20 list? Either send it to me in an email and I'll collate it with everyone else's or you can just post it on this blog. It must be reasonable, though, or I will ignore it.

I just added a new page to the USATF website displaying the home page photos from the summer track meets. I will continue this practice into the future. I may even go back to last year's meets, but I'm not promising anything.

One other thing, I get quite a few comments on what I do. Almost everyone of them is complimentary. I did get one a few weeks ago from an anonymous emailer (he/she used one of those websites that allow you to send an anonymous email) who felt I didn't give Punahou enough photographic space on the State Championship Track and Field pages. Since I couldn't answer the email because this person didn't have enough guts to sign his name, I'll answer it here. I cover Punahou all through the ILH season. They are the largest team we compete against and I think you'll find that if you go through my USATF website there are many more Punahou athletes than any other team, probably more than every other team combined, for that matter. Going to States finally gave me a good chance to see the athletes from the outer islands and other leagues. So, I tried to feature the athletes that I don't see every week.

In the future, I won't even acknowledge emails where the writer won't sign their name.

That's all for now.


Friday, May 04, 2007

Huh? You crazy?

Sorry I haven't updated the blog for a while. "Busy" is a huge understatement and there are just so many hours in the day. Besides the time you see me at events taking pictures, you may not realize that processing those photos takes more time than the actual photography. Then there are all the websites that depend on my photography:

When I'm done with all that, I work on collages and posters. That backlog is pretty large right now, but as they say, that's a lot better than the alternative.

So, to answer all of you that are asking me why I did not cover the hugely important Varsity Girls Basketball game last night against Kamehameha, here goes:

First of all, I desperately wanted to see that game. It's no secret that I have favorite teams. I'm not only a photographer, I'm a fan. And this varsity team has captured my heart. It's not the first team that has done that, and it won't be the last, but I really enjoy watching this team play. Anyway, I (like everyone else) didn't know about this game until 2 days before. I already had other games that I had planned to cover during that time. Combine that with the fact that St. Louis' lighting is, well, awful. Also, I knew that win or lose, this varsity team was going to continue playing, either at the ILH tournament or at States or both, but I knew this wasn't their last game.

The 2 games I covered were the Intermediate 1 game and the JV game, both against MPI. Both those games were the last games I could cover for those teams.

So, it came down to going to the game at St. Louis as a fan (the lighting is so terrible that I figured my photos wouldn't be up to my standards, so why even try?) or cover 2 teams that were finishing their season and have been very supportive of my work. Well, you know what I decided.

I hope to cover the varsity basketball team at States. But I'll let everyone know right now, I will not be able to cover the last 2 days of States in basketball. I have already made my travel arrangements and will be covering States in Track and Field on Maui that Friday and Saturday. I wish the schedule was such that the different sports didn't overlap, but I imagine there just isn't enough time to do it that way.

In the meantime, I will continue to have to make very tough decisions.

That's all for now.


Monday, April 02, 2007

March 26, 2007 through March 31, 2007 Recap

Sorry I haven't been blogging for a while. I thought I was busy before, ugh, some things have changed which increased my work load even more. I now have a few assistants to help me with track meets. I really need the help as it's impossible for one person to cover a track meet so the coverage has been greatly expanded. Of course, that means that I have many more photos to process now. It is currently 3pm on Monday and I still have 3 galleries to go from Saturday. I need to think about this when I get a chance.

Last week I covered the following events:

Tuesday - JV Baseball vs Maryknoll - 9-2 win
Wednesday - Int Black Baseball vs St. Louis - Great comeback for an 8-7 win

Thursday -

1. Varsity Girls Tennis vs Punahou - 5-0 loss to the always formidable Puns
2. JV Baseball vs Pac-5 - A roller coaster, fun game that ends in a win, 6-5

Friday - Intermediate Track and Field Meet held at Iolani (with official results)
Saturday - JV/Varsity Track and Field Meet held at Iolani (with official results)

All the above events are covered with photos and stories at

I'm still working on my schedule for this week, but I can say, if all goes well, I will be covering the Var II and Var I Girls Basketball games on Tuesday, along with the Intermediate ILH Championships on Thursday and Saturday, and the JV/Varsity Track meet on Saturday. I was hoping to do the girls basketball games at Kamehameha on Wednesday but that isn't going to work out, sorry.

Last week I announced that I would be doing cropping on all photo orders, free of charge. I also will do some photo retouching in certain instances. For example, I had an order today where the photo, although good in all other ways, was tilted a bit to the right. This is an easy fix using photoshop, so I modified the original and replaced it in the customer's order. You may still do your own cropping, actually, I prefer you do. But, if I see an order where there is no cropping done, I will assume that the customer isn't aware that they can crop or just didn't want to try. Those are the orders I will concentrate on, but I will look at every photo purchased and will make improvements if they are needed.

New Product Announcement!

I have had many requests to do end of season team slide shows. But, except for teams that my kids were on, I've always declined them because they were just too much work and I couldn't offer them in a way that made business sense for the team and me. I now have acquired a new product that allows me to create slide shows much more quickly and the final product is really nice. I do believe that I can offer slide shows now that will be affordable. So, if you want me to create a slide show using my photos (or yours if you want to add some), please let me know. My price will be based on how extensive a slide show you want (length, number of photos, text, etc.).

That's all for now.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

March 12-17 Recap

This past week was a normal, very busy week.

Monday, it was girls varsity tennis overpowering a combined UH/La Pietra/ St. Francis team 4-1.

Tuesday, I covered the Varsity Girls II basketball game as they dominated HBA, 55-40.

Then it was the marquee game as the Varsity I team took on number 1 ranked Kamehameha. This was a shocking game as the Lady Raiders took no prisoners, running to a big lead from the start and never looking back. Final score was 49-33, Raiders. I don't think the Warriors played very well and I expect that the next time around will be a much tougher game.

Wednesday, it was a comeback 5-3 win for the Intermediate Red baseball team. Excellent game for the Raiders.

Thursday, it was 3 events.

First it was the JV Baseball team vs MPI. Not everything was clicking on this day for the Raiders as they fell 6-2 to the Owls.

Then it was over to the pool to see some girls water polo. The first game was our Varsity II team taking on Kamehameha. This was no contest as the Lady Raiders beat the Warriors, 15-1. It could have been much more but Coach Look showed mercy and stopped the team from scoring.

The Varsity I team then took on the Varsity I Warriors who were state champs last year. This, as expected, was a close game with the Raiders pulling it out in the end, 13-11.

Friday it was over to Kamehameha to cover the Intermediate track and field meet. The weather was awful. I spent at least half the meet under the scorer's tent but still managed over 1000 photos.

Saturday it was the always-fun Ralph Martinson track and field meet at Punahou. This year the format was changed so that only the girls would compete at Punahou. The boys competed at Kamehameha in a different meet. I covered the girls, sorry boys. The weather was much better on Saturday, about 2000 photos worth. The problem with morning meets at Punahou is I have to shoot into the sun for all the field events until the sun gets pretty high, but I'll take that any day over rain!

All stories and track meet results are posted on:

Sunday, March 11, 2007

March 12-17 Tentative Schedule

Monday - Girls Varsity Tennis
Tuesday - Boys Varsity Baseball (for a little while)
Priority Girls Varsity II Basketball and Girls Varsity I Basketball
Wednesday - Intermediate Red Baseball
Thursday - JV Baseball (for a little while)
Priority - Girls Div II Water Polo and Girls Div I Water Polo
Friday - Intermediate Track at Kamehameha
Saturday - Girls JV/Var Track at Punahou

March 5-10, 2007 Recap

On Tuesday, I covered the ILH opener in varsity baseball as the Raiders took on a strong Kamehameha team. The Warriors have been spoken of as favorites this year since they have their whole pitching staff back from last year's squad. The Raiders didn't back down an inch, though, and pulled out the win with a 5-4 score.

Wednesday, I saw the Intermediate Black Baseball team take on Punahou Blue. I believe it was 5-1 going into the last inning. I had to leave, figuring the game was pretty much over anyway. The Raiders then scored 5 in the last inning, winning a very exciting 6-5 game against the Puns!

Thursday, it was the JV Baseball team vs. Damien. This was a blowout that only got worse as the game went on. Final score, 10-0 for the Raiders when the mercy rule kicked in.

Friday, I covered the Intermediate Track and Field meet at Iolani. There are certainly a lot of Intermediates this year! We haven't been able to get through all the events yet, so the officials have been switching around the order in each event.

Saturday, it was over to Kamehameha. First, I covered the Intermediate Girls water polo team as they faced Pac-5. This, too, was a blowout, at least it was at the end of 3 quarters, when I left, with the score at 9-2.

I then walked 100 yards over to the track to cover the JV/Varsity track and field meet.
All these stories are covered at:

For all you track and field fans, you might want to take a look at my track and field and cross-country only website at
I'm still looking for some team representatives to help with event stories. When I don't have anyone writing the story, I will mention it in my "events" story. When I write it, it will probably be pretty brief. I really want to concentrate on the photography and feel I can't do a good job on either when I need to do both. Please volunteer and help support your children's team. If you don't want to write the article, just take notes, and I'll write the article.

Thank you for your continued support.

Maui Track and Field Update

March 10th Kiwanis Maui County Middle School Championships

Kailea Tracy-Visintainer, an 8th grader from Kamehameha Maui, finally beat Lea Lundblad after 17 tries in a super prep 400 meter race. Her time of 60.29 beat Lundblad's time of 62.41. The conditions on the the track were wet and rainy. The race was over before it began as Visintainer jumped out to an early lead in the first 200 meters that Lundblad just could not close. You would have to go back to 2001 to find the last time Lundblad was beaten on her home island. After the race Lundblad said that she will probably only run the 400 in a relay leg. Her main events are the 800 and 1500 meters. Visintainer now begins training for the USATF Nationals in Walnut California. Lundblad will now take a short rest and begin preparing for her freshman year in cross country.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Track News From Maui - 030407

Yesterday, Kailea Tracy-Visintainer, an 8th grader from Kamehameha Maui, ran a 59.8 400 meters in a practice meet. Next weekend Kailea will run head to head with Lea Lundblad in the 400 for the county of Maui championships. This could be the quickest 400 meters ever run on Maui for Intermediates, as the time could dip under 59 seconds. Stay tuned.

Tentative Schedule 3/4/07-3/10/07

My tentative schedule for this week is as follows:

Monday - Girls Varsity Tennis vs MPI at MPI (very tentative)
Tuesday - Varsity Baseball vs Kamehameha (may not stay the whole game), then State Championships in Poetry at St. Andrew's
Wednesday - Intermediate Black Baseball vs Punahou Blue
Thursday - JV Baseball vs Damien
Friday - Intermediate Track and Field at Iolani
Saturday - Girls Varsity Track and Field at Kamehameha

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Iolani Does "High School Musical"

The Iolani performing arts department is currently putting on "High School Musical" at Hawaii Theatre. I was fortunate enough to cover the final dress rehearsal on Wednesday. Shows are Thursday, Friday and Saturday night at 7pm. Friday and Saturday are already sold out. The last I knew, there were a few tickets left for Thursday. I loved the show! If you get a chance, don't miss it.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Tentative Schedule - 2/26/07 through 3/3/07

The winter season state championships are almost complete. They are a lot of fun to cover, but also a tremendous amount of work. Covering about 4 softball, soccer or basketball games a day is a lot. And, this week it's wrestling. Wrestling is only 2 days, Friday and Saturday, but they tend to be very long days.

I do have a few days I can devote to Iolani events this week, and next week I hope to get back to complete Iolani coverage.

Monday - JV Baseball at Punahou
Tuesday - Boys Varsity Tennis
Wednesday - "High School Musical" - yes, I will be covering the dress rehearsal, so photos will be available
Thursday - Undecided, may not be able to cover anything due to "High School Musical"
Friday - Wrestling State Championships
Saturday - Wrestling State Championships

Sunday, February 18, 2007

2007 HHSAA Boys Soccer State Championships

After watching almost every game and every team in this tournament, I have a few observations.

First of all, Punahou is a fine and worthy champion. This is a team that you can never count out. In their first game, against Kealakehe, it was scoreless until Caton Smith found the back of the net at 56:00. Final score, 1-0.

In the quarterfinals, Punahou really showed what they were made of against KS-Maui. At 60:00, Kelii Dias of KS-Maui gave his team a 1-0 lead. This lead held up until 80:00, yes 80:00, when Christopher Walker tied it with a PK. The game went to overtime where John Cowen scored 2 minutes later. Final score, 2-1.

In the semi-finals, Punahou went up against Roosevelt. Roosevelt had pulled the upset of the tournament, beating a talented, powerful (but maybe overconfident?) Kapolei team, 4-1. Could the magic continue against Punahou? No, Punahou went on a scoring spree with the largest scoring total of their season. Final score, 10-1.

In the finals, Punahou would go up against an extremely fast and talented Kalani team. Kalani had beaten Kalaheo, 3-1, in the first round. In the quarters, Kalani beat fourth seeded Makua Lani in a closely contested game, 1-0. In the semis, it was a 2-0 win over Leilehua.

I like the Kalani team. It reminds me of the Iolani team - small, fast, smart, and good passing. I guess that's not surprising since the Kalani coach, Myles Arakawa, is a former Iolani coach who led the Raiders to championships in 1997 and 2000. I expected this to be a good, close game. And it was.

Kalani scored first, with the goal going to Carter Kam at 14:00. Punahou tied it up at 33:00 when Alessi Sia found the back of the net. Kalani answered at 55:00 when Danny Higa gave the Falcons the lead. Punahou's size, strength and depth was starting to take it's toll, though, and Deryck Lim tied it at 66:00. Then, in the last minute, Ben Strand won it for the Buffanblu.

This was a great final match between two talented teams. But, what I really liked about this matchup, was these teams had great attitudes. They never gave up and they played as a team.

And, what a great present to give retiring Punahou head coach, Bob Clague, who first won this tournament in 1976 and many times since then.

Great tournament!