Molokai peewees drop first two games of season
By Dan Murphy
For the second week in a row, Molokai’s peewee football team came up just short of a victory last Saturday. The Farmers played a strong defensive game, but ended up falling to the Kapolei White Warriors 6-0.
The Molokai offense was moving the ball late in the fourth quarter, but time ran out before they were able to put any points on the board. Running back Noah Caparida broke off runs of 10 and 25 yards and quarterback Logan Kamali`i scrambled for 12 more on the final drive before the Warriors were able to slow them down.
“That was a hard-fought gridiron game between two very good football teams,” Molokai Head Coach Kirk Kiaha said.
The loss drops Molokai’s record to 0-2 on the season after losing to the Kapolei Silver team 7-0 in their season opener two weeks ago.
The Farmers defense looked strong this past weekend, holding Kapolei to only two first downs during the game. Middle linebacker Sione Mauala led the way for the defense with three tackles for loss.
“I’ve seen a lot of improvement so far,” Kiaha said. “The techniques are getting better and we are more aggressive.”
The game’s only touchdown came with less than a minute remaining in the first half. A Farmers’ fumble gave Kapolei the ball inside the 10 yard line with just over a minute to go in the half. Two plays later the Warriors found the end zone and took the lead for good.
A Chance to Play
Kiaha said he expects the team to be winning games soon, but the more important thing is that the keiki are getting a chance to learn the game.
“It’s a privilege to introduce the kids to football. I hope that we can keep this going and give all kids a chance to play,” he said.
Kiaha first started coaching youth football over 15 years ago when he and his old high school teammates started a team on Oahu. Two championships and almost two decades later, he is still trying to spread the sport.
Kiaha was instrumental in bringing football to Molokai youth three years ago when the program was started. Formerly the Oahu Youth Sports League, the league changed its name this year to the Island Youth Football League, as they plan to add teams from other neighbor islands in the future.
Molokai currently has a peewee team (11-13 year olds) and a termite team (10 and under). The termite Farmers did not play last weekend, but also lost their home opener to Kapolei Silver on Oct. 3.
Molokai will play seven games this season at Duke Maliu Park.The team also hopes to go to Honolulu at the end of the season for a game at Aloha Stadium.
Kiaha said that the league wouldn’t be able to exist without team parents who feed visiting teams from Oahu and spend countless hours preparing for their arrival.
“I give a big ‘hats off’ to all of those parents as well as the coaches who give up a lot of their time to help these young men and women,” he said.
Kiaha is joined by assistant coaches Wayne Puaoi, Andy Diekroft, Kama Kiaha and one other extremely good-looking and talented anonymous coach.
The Farmers next game will be Oct. 24 against the Ewa Beach Cardinals.