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Waveriders, Wildcats represent at Lavaman

March 30, 2015 - 8:11am

WAIKOLOA — It wasn’t a baseball diamond, football field or even tennis course where the Waveriders and Wildcats were squaring off on Sunday.

That rivalry reserved itself for the Lavaman Waikoloa course, as 31 athletes from the two schools competed in the Olympic Distance event.

The Waveriders — who have a few years of experience on the first-year Wildcat club — entered 21 athletes into the event, including relay teams. Konawaena accounted for 10.

Kealakehe’s Christopher Prater recorded the best time of the day among the Big Island high school athletes, coming in at 2 hours 15 minutes 4 seconds — good enough for a third place finish in the 1-19 age group and 26th overall.

Peaman Biathlon sensation and Konawaena student Cody Ranfranz came in next at 2:20:59, followed closely by Kealakehe’s Majdi Mariano at 2:21:01.

“It’s really nice to have the club here,” Ranfranz said. “It’s important because it is good for everyone to support each other and help each other out. It has been big for me.”

Konawaena’s Olga Brocks earned the only age group victory of the day, capturing the female 1-19 title with a time of 2:54:42.

Members of both tri clubs scattered the course in Kealakehe blue and Konawaena green, and those who came in early made sure to hang around at the finish line to bring in their teammates.

“We are like a family. We do a lot of stuff together,” said Kealakehe triathlete Mitchell Dixon, who finished the course in 2:40:16. “It’s a really great club. Other than triathlon, we try to do a lot of stuff to give back to the community.”

Waverider Tri Club advisor Kristin Old and Konawaena advisor David Wild were also competing in the event to provide some in-game tips for their pupils.

“It’s great to see them all out on the course with me,” Old said. ”That’s what really keeps me going. I see them pass me and I’m cheering for them to accomplish this huge goal. That’s what I like most about it — seeing them willing to work hard to accomplish their goals. It’s not just the sport, but the sheer amount of determination and focus they display.”

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