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By HPU Athletics. April 3, 2015 - 9:41 am
Oregon has won every national championship since acrobatics and tumbling has become a sport (four). Oregon has over 24,000 students. Oregon has an athletics budget that would make Warren Buffett blush. Oregon was the unanimous #1 in the last NCATA Coaches’ Poll. HPU didn’t care. The Sharks (5-1) turned the A&T world upside-down with a thrilling 282.050-280.295 win over the Ducks (4-2) on Friday night at Kamehameha High School.
As expected, the meet was hotly contested. HPU earned a .20 point lead after winning the Compulsory Event 37.95-37.75. The Pyramid Heat was again very effective, scoring a 9.80.
The Sharks flexed their muscle in the Acro Event, planting the seed of an upset. HPU won the event 29.35-27.75. Heat Two went very well again; the Sharks likely punched their ticket to the event finals at the national tournament with yet another 9.9.
HPU and Oregon were exactly even in the Pyramid Event, deadlocked at 29.60. HPU still led at the break, 96.90-95.10.
The defending champs answered the bell in the second half, winning the Toss and Tumbling Events to earn a .075 point lead heading into the team event. The Sharks were again spectacular in the 6 Element Pass (9.75) and the Open Pass (9.85) during the Tumbling Event, both heats are legitimate contenders for a spot in the event finals as well.
Oregon posted an aggressive start value of 109.02 (max 110) in the team event while HPU started with a 107.40. It was the Sharks that just flatly out executed the competition.
HPU’s score of 282.050 marks the highest score in the two-year history of the program.
Head Coach Keenyn Won had to have a few flashbacks on Friday; she played at Oregon and was the Hawaii High School State Cheerleader of the Year at Kamehameha.
“Tonight was surreal. This team came into this meet with more confidence and energy than ever before and it showed. We had a bunch of little victories throughout each event and in the end pulled out the ‘W’ against the #1 team in the country,” said Won. “This team EARNED their incredible win tonight and I couldn’t be a prouder as a coach than I am tonight of these 23 female student-athletes. It is always fun to celebrate, but next week it’s back to work to prepare for the national tournament.”
The NCATA National Championships run from April 23rd-April 25th at Fairmont State.
Photo by Eric Alcantara.