BIIF Given One Guaranteed Berth to Boys DII State Hoops Tourney
Winning the Big Island Interscholastic Federation championship in Division II boys basketball will mean more this season thanks to the newest state qualification numbers released by the Hawai`i High School Athletic Association.
The BIIF announced Tuesday that only one team, the league’s tournament champion, will earn a guaranteed berth to the Hawaiian Airlines / HHSAA Division II Boys Basketball Championships, held Feb. 20-22 on Oahu. Last year, the tournament champion and runner-up both represented the league at states.
This year’s tournament runner-up will host the third place team from the Interscholastic League of Honolulu to determine the final berth into the state tournament. The date and time for that game has yet to be finalized.
The reason for the change in league qualifications comes from the state’s formula in determining the amount of berths to a tournament from each league. Simply put, more teams in a league earns more slots in the tournament.
“Tournament berths are simply calculated by ratios. More teams a league has, the more berths,” said HHSAA Executive Director Christopher Chun in an e-mail to Big Island Now. “Rounding is involved when fractions occur. Sometimes there is a tie. In that case we can’t round and need a play-in game.”
The Oahu Interscholastic Association holds three berths in the eight-team field, the most of any league. The ILH, with eleven schools in Division II, gets two berths, and the BIIF, Maui Interscholastic League, and Kaui Interscholastic Federation, each receive one.
The BIIF, with six schools in Division II, was tied with the ILH in determining which league would get the last berth, leading to the play-in game. Normally, the BIIF would have at least seven teams, but Laupahoehoe Community Public Charter School did not field a boys basketball team this season.
Additionally, the ILH only declared ten teams to the HHSAA before the season started. Eleven teams currently play in the league, but Hawaiian Mission Academy declared itself ineligible for state tournament competition, based on its policies of when athletic teams can compete.
In Division I boys basketball, the BIIF will still hold two guaranteed berths to the 12-team tournament, held for the tournament champion and runner-up. The tournament champion will receive a bye and a seeded spot in the tournament, held on Oahu from Feb. 19-22.
On the girls side, a total of five teams will qualify for the Division I and Division II state tournaments. The Division I tournament champion will receive a seeded berth and will host a three-team regional pod on Feb. 7-8. The tournament runner-up will be placed in another regional. Each regional champion will head to a newly-created “Final Four,” held Feb. 14-15 at the Neal Blaisdell Arena.
In Division II, three teams will qualify for the state tournament, held on Oahu from Feb. 5-8. The third berth will go to the winner of the league tournament’s third-place game, contested between the losers of the two tournament semi-final contests. The third-place game will be played at Kea`au High School on Feb. 1.