HANAPEPE – Two electric touchdown runs – an 86-yard blast from running back Walea Arquette and an 11-yard dash from quarterback Max Hadwin – deadlocked the KIF junior varsity opener between the Waimea Menehunes and Kaua’i Red Raiders 7-7 in a turnover-ridden spectacle at Hanapepe Field Friday night.
The Menehune’s Arquette sprinted past the Raiders for 86 yards on the first play of the second quarter to put Waimea up 7-0. And in the third, preceding a number of hard earned yards from running back Niko Elvenia, Kaua’i’s Hadwin dashed for the tying score. The 11-yard run was the last score of the game, although the Raiders came close to breaking the deadlock later in the half – Kaua’i opted to try for seven points instead of a field goal in one possession and a penalty pushed back a second Hadwin touchdown in the fourth quarter.
Turnovers were a regular occurence in the contest. There were nine total: Waimea committed five and Kaua’i four.
Three turnovers took just 10 seconds off the clock in the second quarter. Kaua’i OL/LB Stanley Kinikmaka fell on a fumble with 5:25 remaining in the half. One play later, Arquette intercepted a Hadwin pass. And on the next play, with 5:15 on the clock, lineman Ivan Kuapahi landed on a Menehune fumble to round out a flurry of mishaps.
Red Raider Brian Rodrigues landed on a number of fumbles and tallied an interception late in the second period.
The lead running backs from each side – Niko Elvenia for the Raiders and Luke Tsuchiya of the Menehunes accounted for much of the game’s offensive production.