Football Expands Horizons
By Sage Yamashita, Intern Reporter
The Farmers expanded their 11-man football experience two weeks ago at an exhibition game against Waialua in Oahu.
The team played with power through the game with a final score of 22-14 Waialua. Even with the loss, the boys represented Molokai well. According to Nichol Kahale, the last time Molokai played Waialua at Waialua High School was in the 1950s.
“Happy that this is finally happening,” Kahale shared on social media. “…In the 1950s my dad, Larry Helm, Uncle Greg Helm, Kimberly Ku’uipo, and Tomie Helm played football against my father-in-law Larry Kahale. My dad shared with me that their shoulder pads were made of cardboard.”
Molokai High School’s football program rebooted after more than 50 years and started as an 8-man team in 2009. Since 2019, they have been getting involved with the 11-man game. Kahale said the goal has always been to transition from 8-man to 11-man.
In October 2019, the football team challenged themselves playing against Nanakuli in the program’s first-ever 11-man game. This game brought the Farmers a considerable step forward in the journey to traditional American football. Between 2019 and 2021, COVID gapped the program’s efforts but didn’t stop the movement. As soon as football was back in 2021, the team played against King Kekaulike in an 11-man football game. This was their only game of the season last year, but their first-ever win in an 11-man football game.
With all accomplishments in rising towards 11-man football, the regular scheduled Maui Interscholastic League 8-man season is still in action. On Saturday, Sept. 17, the Farmers Football team traveled to Maui to play against Seabury. Seabury is back in the MIL fielding their football team after taking a break in 2018. The Farmers took the win 64-20, making them 2-0 in the MIL season.
Lanai will host the next game for the Farmers Football team on Sept. 24. Following Molokai’s first win against Lanai, the Farmers will go up against the Pine Lads for a rematch.