|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
Sunday, October 25, 2015
|Contact: Natalie Iwamoto|
HONOLULU – After 17 years of dedicated service, the Hawaii High School Athletic Association’s only air riflery coordinator in the history of the tournament, Ed Chang, will retire following the Oct. 27 meet on Maui.
“When the sporter air rifle state championship started in 1999, Ed was instrumental in setting up the format of the match,” said long-time Punahou coach Karen Finley. “He coordinates with whichever league is the host for the year—making sure that all bases are covered,” she added.
Among other planning details, Chang serves as the liaison between the HHSAA and the Civilian Marksmanship Program – the state tournament’s title sponsor and national organization dedicated to training and educating citizens in responsible use of firearms and air guns.
Before there was an air rifle program in Hawaii, Chang was involved with the smallbore shooting programs in Hawaii as a competitor, coach and match organizer, even serving as the lead official for the ILH’s various riflery competitions.
While the OIA participated in smallbore riflery dating back to the early 1970s, and ILH back to the 1940s, the sporter air rifle programs took off in the mid-1990’s when the OIA schools discovered they could field teams relatively quickly without too much outlay of money by borrowing rifles and coaches from the ROTC programs already in place. With the addition of the ILH and neighbor-island leagues to the sport in 1999, the HHSAA hosted the first-ever state tournament at Konawaena High School on the Big Island.
Hawaii's state championship is the largest in the nation among high schools, and one of two states in the U.S. that are sanctioned by the high school athletic governing body. The other association who fielded participants in the 2014-15 school year, according to the NFHS participation survey data, was the District of Columbia, which reported a total of eight boys.
While there is some variation among the leagues on team size and selection processes to the state championship, all utilize the sporter air rifle in three-position competition. Precision air rifles are not allowed. League competition, with the exception of Maui, is primarily team-based with an individual championship ending the season. Shooters fire 20 record shots in each position – prone, standing and kneeling. A perfect score is 600. Teams are made up of four firing members from the same school.
“Ed’s knowledge and the relationships he cultivated are invaluable and he will be sorely missed,” said HHSAA Executive Director Chris Chun. “He is leaving the sport in good hands to carry on what he started and the HHSAA is grateful for his years of service,” he added.
The 2015 Civilian Marksmanship Program/HHSAA Air Riflery State Championship takes place Tuesday, Oct. 27, at the Kamehameha Schools-Maui campus.
Chang will continue to remain involved in the behind-the-scenes work of future tournaments supporting his successor, Fred Hu, who has assisted Chang as line supervisor since 1999.
About the HHSAAFounded in 1956, the Hawaii High School Athletic Association is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) educational athletic organization exclusively dedicated to serving 96 public and independent member high schools statewide, as they work cooperatively to support and promote athletics as part of the high school education program. As the umbrella organization of high school athletics, the HHSAA operates 44 state championships in 18 different sports, establishing consistent standards and rules for competition, in addition to providing professional development opportunities for coaches and athletic administrators.
For more information on the Hawaii High School Athletic Association, go to www.sportshigh.com.