KAPAA — The Warriors won by a wide margin to open the regular season.
Kapaa High School’s varsity football team defeated Kauai High, 50-0, Saturday evening at the Bryan J. Baptiste Sports Complex in Kapaa.
“It’s a great start, no doubt. And it’s going to sound silly, but we still got to get better,” said Kapaa head coach Philip Rapozo. “I’m pretty sure when we do our film tomorrow, we’ll see a lot of things we got to clean up. But I’m happy with the win. That’s a good team. And I think as the season goes, they’ll get better and they’ll be around.”
Kapaa (3-0, 1-0 KIF) started to pour it on in the second quarter, scoring 27 of its 50 points in that period highlighted by two long touchdown receptions by Warriors senior receiver Gabe Keener — the first for 87 yards, and the second for 48.
“As for the offense clicking this early, we just play hard,” Keener said. “Like in practice and stuff, we try. And we’re bonded. We’re good. We’re like brothers, like family. When we’re like that, it’s just automatic.”
The Warriors, though, were penalized 12 times — two of which were for unsportsmanlike conduct, and one was for unnecessary roughness.
Kauai High was flagged eight times — once for unsportsmanlike conduct.
“That’s the worst part. We got to learn to keep our heads,” Rapozo said. “Don’t wear our emotions on our sleeves. Just keep playing football. That’s the hard part, and that’s the disappointing part — that we get out of our game plan because we start getting mad. We can’t do that. It hurts the team.”
Kauai High (0-3, 0-1 KIF) was stunted by turnovers at inopportune times.
In the second quarter, a bad snap and a fumble on special teams led to turnovers deep in Red Raiders territory — leading to a Warriors touchdown and a field goal.
The Red Raiders reached the red zone early in the third quarter, but then turned the ball over on an interception.
“I cannot use the excuse of growing pains anymore if we continue to put ourselves in tough situations,” said Kauai head coach Derek Borrero. “We have the ability to be good. We do, but we’re still working on our mindset. I think that’s what is hindering our progress. Once we fix that, we’ll be a better team.”
Kauai High’s offense opted to pass for a majority of the game. Red Raider junior quarterback Christian Manera was 16-40 for 143 yards and and two interceptions.
“We fought hard, but not hard enough to show it on the scoreboard. But at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what happens on the scoreboard. We know we fought hard, and we’ll be back,” Manera said. “We just got to get back to the chalkboard — look at film and look at the mistakes we’ve done. We had some fixable mistakes that could have reduced the score, but it is what it is. We just got to move on.”
Borrero said he favored the pass to give his quarterback and receivers ample opportunities to build chemistry.
“We’ve got athletes that can perform in the air. So, I made the decision once the score was about 20-something to zero, we’re going to get a workout here tonight and throw the ball,” he said.
“I made that decision because our linemen were doing a darn good job protecting our quarterback. And he (Manera) was making some good decision, but he was just misfiring,” Borrero added. “On a positive note, I saw some good things in the passing game. We just got to get better all the way around.”
Kapaa saw its two quarterbacks in action. Senior starting quarterback Kurt Napoleon was 9-19 for 189 yards and two touchdowns — both scoring throws were to Keener.
Junior backup Teili Fonua, was 5-11 for 73 yards and one touchdown.
“I’m very happy with both of them,” Rapozo said. “Kurt is getting better every week. That’s what we need from Kurt. And Teili, his first game, he did pretty good. At least we know we got two guys we can count on.”
The two quarterbacks did hook up for one play — an 11-yard reception by Napoleon from Fonua in the second quarter.
“Kurt, he’s pretty good out there at receiver, too. He’s big. He blocks well and he can get the ball. It gives us that extra weapon,” Rapozo said. “No matter if we have Teili in, we can still use Kurt and make things happen with Kurt at receiver.”
Kauai High won the junior varsity contest, 42-7. The Red Raiders JV quarterback, sophomore Tyler Oshima, accounted for five touchdowns — three on the ground and two through the air.
Kapaa will next play Waimea (1-1, 0-0 KIF) on Friday at Vidinha Stadium in the Menehunes’ Kauai Interscholastic Federation regular season debut. The JV game will begin at 5 p.m. and the varsity will follow.
Kauai High will play Waimea on Sept. 9 at Vidinha Stadium.
06:13 KAPAA Clifton Oliver 35-yard field goal, 3-0 Kapaa
08:49 KAPAA Gabe Keener 87-yard reception from Kurt Napoleon, Clifton Oliver PAT good, 10-0 Kapaa
07:33 KAPAA Leighton Moniz 1-yard run, Clifton Oliver PAT good, 17-0 Kapaa
06:17 KAPAA Gabe Keener 48-yard reception from Kurt Napoleon, Clifton Oliver PAT good, 24-0 Kapaa
01:33 KAPAA Clifton Oliver 43-yard field goal, 27-0 Kapaa
00:34 KAPAA Clifton Oliver 28-yard field goal, 30-0 Kapaa
05:04 KAPAA Ryno Banasihan 23-yard run, Clifton Oliver PAT good, 37-0 Kapaa
04:19 KAPAA Maka Troche 20-yard reception from Teili Fonua, Clifton Oliver PAT good, 44-0 Kapaa
00:42 KAPAA Ryno Banasihan 5-yard run, PAT no good (botched snap), 50-0 Kapaa
Passing: Kurt Napoleon, 9-19, 189 yard, 2 touchdowns
Rushing: Ryno Banasihan, 5 carries, 49 yards, 2 toucdowns
Receiving: Gabe Keener, 4 receptions, 168 yards, 2 touchdowns
Defense: Kapena Texeira, 3 tackles, 2 sacks
Passing: Christian Manera, 16-40, 143 yards, 2 interceptions
Rushing: Christian Manera, 4 carries, 21 yards
Receiving: Jaykob Nakaahiki-Young, 5 receptions, 74 yards
Defense: Noah Tangalin, 7 tackles