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Saturday, November 2, 2002


[ HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL ]



Kailua runs away
from Mililani 41-17



By Jason Kaneshiro
jkaneshiro@starbulletin.com

Kailua sidestepped the upset bug that had ravaged the higher seeds in the Oahu Interscholastic Association playoffs by scoring a 41-17 quarterfinal win over Mililani last night at Aloha Stadium.

Kailua running back Nathan Leaver carried the ball 21 times for 223 yards and a touchdown as the Surfriders advanced to the league semifinals after watching the lower seeds win the first three quarterfinal games of the week.

Kailua's victory also ensured that all four of the OIA's state representatives will be from the OIA East Red Conference. The defending OIA champion Surfriders play McKinley in a semifinal matchup. Castle faces Farrington in the other.

Last night's game was closer than the final score indicated, as Mililani, the third seed from the OIA West Red, trailed by just three points entering the fourth quarter. But Kailua, the OIA East Red runner-up, exploded for 21 points in the final period to erase any doubt.

"It's always great when you can make some big plays like we did in the fourth quarter," Kailua coach Darren Johnson said. "Mililani nickle-and-dimed us for some touchdowns and at halftime the defense told the offense, 'Keep scoring because we're going to shut them down.' "

Kailua packed its state tournament hopes on the shoulders of its offensive line as Daniel Bukurau, Al Kauahi, Xavier Hoolulu, Kea Crowell and Pat So'oalo cleared the way for 330 rushing yards for the Surfriders.

"The linemen did a great job blocking. They've been consistent all year," Johnson said. "(Offensive line coach) Marcus Malepeai does a great job with them."

The lead changed hands four times in the first half as Kailua took a 20-17 lead into the locker room.

Kailua's defense opened the game by pushing Mililani back 8 yards on the first possession of the game and forcing the Trojans to punt.

On the Surfriders' first play from scrimmage, David Kaihenui caught a screen pass from Ranson Kepa and outran the Trojan defense to the end zone for a 54-yard touchdown.

But Mililani kept its composure and responded with a 10-play drive and tied the game when Sean Fujimoto hit Willi Leilua with a 9-yard scoring pass. The Trojans converted a key fourth down when the Trojans faked a punt and Whitney Shimatsu took a pitch around the right side for a 13-yard gain.

The Trojans took the lead later in the quarter on Shimatsu's 47-yard field goal.

Kailua reclaimed it in the second quarter behind an offensive line that averages 292 pounds. Leaver carried the ball on five consecutive plays and picked up 54 yards to take the ball to the Mililani 2. Kepa then scored on a quarterback sneak to give the Surfriders a 13-10 lead.

Leaver finished the half with 130 yards on 13 carries for Kailua.

Mililani struck back after a Leaver fumble as Billy Barbour scored on a 1-yard plunge with 1:49 left in the half.

But Kailua finished the half on the high end of the see-saw as Kepa hit Brad Ching on a crossing pattern for a 42-yard score.

After a scoreless third quarter, Leaver gave the Surfriders some breathing room with an 85-yard dash for a touchdown with 11:06 left in the game, giving Kailua 27-17 lead.

Kailua then broke the game open with 5:54 left when Kepa found Ching for an 18-yard touchdown connection. Bronson Kamaka closed the scoring with a 70-yard run with 1:47 left.

"We just didn't get it going offensively in the second half," Mililani coach James Millwood said. "We thought we could counter with some quick passes and screens but they were too fast and aggressive."

At Aloha Stadium

Mililani (6-3) 10 7 0 0 -- 17
Kailua (7-1) 7 13 0 21 -- 41

Kail--David Kaihenui 54 pass from Ranson Kepa (Mike Sakava kick)
Mil--Willi Leilua 9 pass from Sean Fujimoto (Whitney Shimatsu kick)
Mil--Shimatsu FG 47
Kail--Kepa 2 run (kick failed)
Mil--Billy Barbour 1 run (Shimatsu kick)
Kail--Brad Ching 42 pass from Kepa (Sakava kick)
Kail--Nathan Leaver 85 run (Sakava kick)
Kail--Ching 18 pass from Kepa (Sakava kick)
Kail--Bronson Kamaka 70 run (Sakava kick)

RUSHING -- Mililani: Barbour 15-26, Fujimoto 8-(-24), Peter Enomoto-Hahn 1-(-1), Peter Raneses 3-14, Carlo Raneses 3-11, Shimatsu 1-13, Maka Kahoano 1-(-1), Ryan Aguon 2-57. Kailua: Leaver 21-223, Kamaka 6-106, Kepa 5-11.

PASSING -- Mililani: Fujimoto 18-39-0-179, Clint Blackman 1-1-0-1. Kailua: Kepa 5-15-0-135.

RECEIVING -- Mililani: Nate Adams 4-79, Leilua 1-9, Aran Bisho 7-39, Jose Santos 2-9, Barbour 1-2, Tayvis Erlandiz 2-18, Jon Santos 1-15, C. Raneses 1-9. Kailua: Kaihenui 2-55, Ching 3-80.

Att: 4,031



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