HANAPEPE — Menehune senior forward Carl Mecham netted a hat trick as Waimea High School’s varsity boys soccer team defeated Kauai High, 4-2, Wednesday at Hanapepe Stadium.
“This week in practice, we talked a lot as a team and trying to come closer. Playing tonight, it really showed well,” Mecham said. “You can see obviously, when we’re not working together, our game is just sloppy. But as we played tonight, our game was working for each other and not getting on each other’s backs.”
Mecham scored twice in the second half. He got the go-ahead goal at the 47th minute to break a 2-2 tie, and then scored in the waning minutes to complete the hat trick.
He got his first goal early in the first half.
“It was really nice. It’s not all me though,” Mecham said. “I had the midfield working. I had the other forward working, giving me through balls. I missed some opportunities. That’s the game of soccer, but I put three in and I was happy that I could lead the team through victory.”
Menehune senior defender Christopher Ishikawa got the match’s first goal at the seventh minute for Waimea (3-1-3 KIF) on a free kick from midfield.
Red Raiders goalkeeper Kamuela Numazawa had a hand on Ishikawa’s shot but couldn’t prevent the score.
“The score, 4-2, it kind of sounds like a comfortable win. I think if you were at this game, you know it was not that comfortable,” said Waimea head coach Kapono Chong-Hanssen. “Even though it was a two-goal margin at the end, that was a tough game. And hats off to Kauai High for their improvement over the whole season.”
“Of course, I would have loved to just lick them in the first 15 minutes and have it be an easy game, but that doesn’t really test your resolve. And it doesn’t test the boys’ ability to do the things we need them to do,” he added. “Tonight, it was tested. And they handled it well.”
Kauai (2-3-2 KIF) got its two goals from senior striker Maka Bailey.
Bailey’s first score came off a penalty kick at the 22nd minute. He scored an equalizer minutes into the second half off a shot from distance.
“Coaches told me to shoot whenever I get the chance. I had the chance on the second one,” Bailey said. “The first one, it was all (Red Raiders senior forward Rhylen Yadao). He went up for the header and got the penalty. So, all credit to him for that one.”
Despite the losing result, Kauai head coach Martin Steinhaus was pleased.
“It’s always tough to play here at Waimea,” he said. “There are so many different factors that affect the game and the players. But they’re learning. They left their hearts on the field. That’s all we can ask.”
Red Raiders senior defender Brodie Noice was issued a red card late in the second half for violent conduct.
“Players get frustrated. I’ve been there, done that,” Steinhaus said. “I just have to tell them to stay focused, and don’t get mad at things they cannot control.”
Menehune senior midfielder Justin Fune was issued a yellow card, also in the second half, for unsporting behavior.
Waimea will host Island School (4-1-2 KIF) at noon Saturday at Hanapepe Stadium. Kauai will play Kapaa (1-5-1 KIF) at 3:30 p.m. Saturday at Vidinha Stadium.
Waimea: Carl Mecham 3 (10’, 47’, 75’), Christopher Ishikawa (7’)
Kauai: Maka Bailey 2 (22’ PEN, 43’)
Varsity girls: Kauai High scores eight in 1st half, trounces Waimea 11-0
Kauai High’s varsity girls soccer team defeated Waimea, 11-nil, Saturday at Hanapepe Stadium prior to the varsity boys’ match.
Kauai (7-2-0 KIF) scored eight goals in the opening half — led by Red Raiders sophomore forward Kehela Ventura who scored three goals in the half, and junior forward Kui Kanahele who got two.
The Red Raiders got three more in the second half, two by junior midfielder Kyla Bandsma.
“We carried out what we wanted to do this week in practice. We were successful and executed what we needed to do in the game,” said Kauai head coach Joe Cassler. “It was nice to be able to do that, because then we could rest some of the starters.”
Waimea (0-9-0 KIF) had a chance early in the first half to get on the board. Menehune sophomore midfielder Leiko Yamauchi took a shot from outside the 18-yard box, but the ball went straight to Red Raiders senior goalie Kalia Shimabukuro.
Later in the half, Menehune freshman forward Tori Ann Ishikawa took a shot on goal off a free kick from well outside the penalty area. But that shot, too, went directly to Shimabukuro.
“You can’t take anything away from Kauai High. They’re a really good team. Good individual players, and they’re well-coached,” said Waimea head coach William Trugillo. “Our girls just came out flat in the first half. In the second half, they picked it up a little bit.”
With the season winding down, Trugillo added he hopes his young players will continue to learn skills, gain knowledge and carry it to next season.
“Soccer is a game of experience,” he said. “You got to make decisions, as players, on the spot and know how to adjust. You only learn that from playing. Most of these girls don’t have playing experience. That’s what it is — just being able to play, and keep a good attitude all the way through.”
Kauai will next play Kapaa (8-1-0 KIF) at 1:30 p.m. Saturday at Vidinha Stadium. Waimea will host Island School (3-6-0 KIF) at 10 a.m. Saturday at Hanapepe Stadium.
“I just hope we’re putting everything together all at once,” Cassler said of the weekend’s matchup with the current league-leading Warriors. “I hope that — win, lose, draw, whatever — as long as we’re playing up to speed to where we need to be at, then that’s really what I’m looking for on Saturday.”
Kauai: Kehela Ventura 3 (5’, 17’, 33’), Kui Kanahele 2 (13’, 31’), Kyla Bandsma 2 (56’, 74’), Britney Ehia (3’), Judy Ann Edurise (10’), Eryka Napoleon (21’), Kaitlynne Bukoski (47’)