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Kaneaiakala Playing Football at Eastern Arizona College

Makani Kaneaiakala at Eastern Arizona College. Contributed photo

Molokai High School alumnus Makani Kaneaiakala is a freshman at Eastern Arizona College, where he is playing for their football team. The Molokai Dispatch Sports Report got a chance to do a Q&A with Makani.

1- How have you adjusted to college life and leaving Molokai? Well I have to say I’m finally adjusting to college life. It wasn’t easy in the beginning because I had my family to help me with everything compared to not having family. Now it’s all about being independent.

2- How has your football season been going and how is it different from high-school football? So far my football season at Eastern Arizona College has been a great experience and a great start for my freshman year with my hardwork in the classroom, weight room, and even on the field, the coaches were impressed with my skills and talents at the outside linebacker position. Also, how I performed on special teams led me to opportunities being able to have playing time in the game and making the traveling team every week with them to away games across the state. It wasn’t as much playing time I really wanted to have, but I made sure I’d make every minute and second count, it was enough to show them what I could do in the amount of time I played, and here’s a glimpse of my stats with an average of 3-4 tackles a game. We started off the season with a bit of a struggle with a WSFL Conference record of 0-2 dropping our rank below the charts, putting us in a tougher spot to a winning season and a chance to play in a Bowl Game. But we never lost hope, the mistakes, the fun, and games were all over. It was time to put us in the right tracks and focus on getting back to where we belong. Then as we got through intense practices and a little more kick in our film, workouts, and confidence, we steamrolled our way to a winning season and defeating the remaining teams in the conference with an overall record of 7-4, and puts us back up in the top-3 ranking. Also a spot in the NJCAA “Salt City Bowl” In Hutchinson Kansas, on Dec. 2 at Gowans Stadium, versus the Hutchinson College “Blue Dragons” with Kickoff at 7 p.m. The difference from football in college to high school is speed-is-everything, and the competition in the sport is to extreme standards.

3- Give me the specifics on your major, and what are some of your goals? My college is the #1 best-valued college in the state of Arizona. Dorms are at personal best and come with a meal-plan up to 19 meals a week. There is has great variety of athletic programs you can choose from, the tuition is affordable, there are many classes to choose that fit your way of work, and many activities and clubs to choose.

For now I’m working on getting my associates degree in General Studies, then as I transfer to another college I plan to major in Business/Entrepreneuring. Some of my goals are continuing to play football as long as I can, leep up with my studies, and continue to make my family, friends, and the island of Molokai proud.

4- Is there anything else you’d like to say to  your alma matter? When you have an opportunity at something great in life, whether it’s for sports, academics, or even a good job that can benefit you, TAKE IT!!!! In this life, opportunities come and go but it’s up to you guys to do something about it.

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