Lunas pick up win in DII battle to stay in first

Junior+Kala

Photo by Nicole Ka'auamo

Junior Kala'i Yap threads the needle on a keep at the September 24 varsity football game against Lahainaluna High School. The Warriors lost, 21-7.

An exciting long pass from quarterback Kala"i Yap to wide receiver Andrew Park-Murray.

By Dylan Godsey, sports co-editor

An even match with two balanced teams was the prediction for this Maui Interscholastic League DII varsity football match-up.

A win for the Warriors would have tied up the two Division II teams at two wins and two losses each, but Kamehameha Schools Maui took on and lost to the Lunas of Lahainaluna 21-7. The loss made mirror images of the teams’ standings with Kamehameha Maui at three losses, one win and Lahainaluna High at three wins, one loss.

Though the loss does not take KSM completely out of the running for a league championship, it does leave them with a huge challenge if they expect to attain that goal. Depending on the outcome of the next Warrior-Luna match-up and the performance of the Lunas in the second half of the season, there is still a possibility that the Warriors can capture the title.

The start of the game progressed slowly with both teams recieving flags and turnovers.

“I think we came into this game more ready. Our problems are that we just need to execute more. It’s the little things that kill us,” said Kalei Ha’ake, defensive lineman and key defensive player in tonight’s game.

The game got rolling when the Lunas punched in the first score of the game with two minutes and twenty-three seconds to go in the first quarter, putting the Lunas up 7-0. Then the Warriors followed that up by scoring late in the second quarter with a touchdown by Ryan Graham and a successful PAT from Nazareth Thibodeaux.

After the half, the Lunas managed to score two more times, once in the third and once in the fourth quarters as the Warriors struggled with fumbles, an interception and turnovers on downs.

The final Luna touchdown still left 4:24 on the clock. The Warriors ran a series of short pass plays to Daylan Machado and Jordan Nauka that were successful in getting them down the field, but in the end, they were unable to capitalize on the hard-won field position.

“We worked our hardest and what happened, happened,” said Alika Sanchez, linebacker and outstanding defensive player for tonight’s game.

In working on the next week and weeks to come in this season Sanchez said, “We just need to work hard.”

Kamehameha Maui’s next game will be against the Baldwin Bears on October 7 at home.