HANAPEPE — Twice as nice.
The Kapaa Eagles Junior Midget team was the second Kauai Pop Warner football team invited to play a game at Aloha Stadium.
“This is so exciting,” said Eagles JM coach Dustin Alfiler. “We were happy the Koloa Redskins Mitey Mite team was invited to play, and just a few days later, the Kapaa Eagles JM team was invited.”
The Kapaa Eagles JM will play at the Goodwill Invitational Bowl Nov. 24 at Aloha Stadium against either a Mililani or Pearl City team.
“This is a great opportunity for these young men who can showcase their skill sets on the big stage,” Alfiler said.
The Eagles Mitey Mites, under coach Alvin Sasil, and Junior Peewee Eagles with coach Luke Hamberg, will be playing its postseason games against Mililani at the Mililani High School field on Nov. 23 starting at 8 a.m. and 10 a.m.
“This year is extra special because in all the years of Kapaa Pop Warner football, and actively trying for the past 10 years, this is the only year we’ve been invited to play in Aloha Stadium,” said Akala Aiwohi, president of the Kapaa Pop Warner Association, on the invitation to play on the field usually reserved for college and pro football.
Alfiler said he’s been to Aloha Stadium on a number of occasions to view games, but has never had the opportunity to play on the turf, let alone coach a team there.
His players are as excited as their coach.
“I have been to Aloha Stadium to watch games,” said Ekolu Rivera, an Eagles JM linebacker. “But to play the game on the field, feel the turf, and get a real feel of the stadium is kind of nervous.”
Rivera, a 4-year player with the Kapaa Eagles program, was joined by Kalena Harder, who said he wasn’t nervous, yet, but is ready to play at the home field of the University of Hawaii Warrior football team.
Aiwohi said the Kapaa Pop Warner Association wants to thank the league’s families, community, the Oahu Pop Warner league, the Kauai Pop Warner Football League and all the players for the continued support.
“We’ve had our schedule of travel fundraisers of car washes,” Aiwohi said.
“Now, we’ve got our ‘Samurai Snack Packs’ available from all Kapaa Eagles participants and we will be at the First Saturday,” he said.
The First Saturday is from 5:30 to 9 p.m. Nov. 2, where the team will accept any donations for the variety of bake sale items made by the team’s families.