There’s a reason why they call it special teams and both Kaua’i and Kapa’a know how big an impact it has played in the KIF football season so far.
In their first and only matchup of the year, the Red Raiders (2-0) narrowly edged the Warriors (0-3), 13-12, thanks to a clever punt return touchdown by Justyn Jumawan-Perreira, who managed to pick up over 100 yards in return yardage throughout the contest.
The wet weather also played a big factor throughout the game, as both teams were unable to hold onto the ball and were limited in pass plays.
Both teams utilized their running attacks, as Jonathan Rellin put Kaua’i up first with a 2-yard TD run and Kapa’a’s Coty Salausa answered four minutes later on a 6-yard TD scamper.
However, unlike the Red Raiders, the Warriors missed their PAT, which put them down by a point at halftime.
At the midpoint of the third quarter, another special teams play made a big difference in the contest, as Kapa’a’s Matt Roman took a Ace Viceo-blocked punt into the endzone, but Kahai Nakano missed his second extra point of the game. Kapa’a held onto a 12-7 lead until late in the fourth quarter, where Jumawan-Perreira worked his magic for the 13-12 win.
Kapa’a didn’t only lose the game, but two of its key defensive players went down with injuries. Unfortunately, Jetson Wakuta was lost for the season, but according to assistant coach Steven Kaui, Nathaniel Langi should be back for Friday’s contest at Vidinha Stadium.
Kapa’a, who has lost by a total of 12 points in its first three games, is searching for its first win of the season. Meanwhile, the Red Raiders need to win in order to stay in sole possession of first place.
Kaua’i vs. Kapa’a
Friday: JV: 5 p.m., Varsity: 7:30 p.m.
Radio: Live on KQNG AM570, 7:30 p.m.