Brock's the rock


POSTED: Sunday, March 29, 2009

His coach instilled patience.

Brock Granger provided persistence. Lots of persistence.

The versatile senior embraced the responsibilities of being a co-captain, then played like no other as 'Iolani won the boys state soccer championship. Granger, who scored 13 goals in league play, was rewarded by coaches as the Star-Bulletin state player of the year in a near-unanimous vote.

The only vote that didn't go to Granger was pegged to his teammate, defender Reid Sakamoto, who also was selected to the All-State first team. Granger, who has signed to play at UNLV, drew kudos from coaches across leagues.

“;I think he's player of the year. He deserves it,”; Mililani coach Jeff Yamamoto said. “;He's tough defensively, tougher than nails. A very smart player with or without the ball, a tactical player.

“;I don't think he's known for his defense. He gets into the right position at the right time, his timing is excellent, and that puts him above everybody else. When to break on defense. His timing and breaking off the ball, defending people one on one, unbelievable.”;

Granger, like several of his teammates, plays year-round with the Honolulu Bulls club. He's learned to balance a fiery temperament with cool leadership.

“;We had each other's backs and demanded a lot from each other,”; he said. “;If one of our teammates got hit pretty hard, we go up and protect him and make sure he's all right.”;

The frustration of past 'Iolani teams was fuel for the title run, ending a drought of eight years without a crown.

“;Me and the other captain (Sakamoto), we knew how we wanted to run the team,”; Granger said. “;If something wasn't right, we needed to get it right before we played. We knew they didn't like it when we confronted them, but it needed to be done.”;

One of his teammates, junior Nicholas Goo, led all forwards in the voting.

“;Oh, he's a phenomenal player,”; Yamamoto said of Goo, who had two goals and two assists in a 5-2 win over Mililani for the title. “;He's really, really a great player, very good on the ball. Very difficult to beat, kind of a nightmare for any opponent. A nightmare for us.”;

Aiea's rock-steady 6-foot-1 senior, Mason Puckett, led all defenders in the voting.

“;The heart and soul of Aiea,”; Kapolei coach Bryce Kaneshiro said. “;He led the defense for two or three years. He's been good since he started high school. As Aiea has progressed, they showed a real dependence on Mason. I'm glad to see him graduate. He's an impact player whether he's in the front or the back.”;

In all, four Raiders were voted to the first team, and coach Chris Lee was selected coach of the year by his peers.

“;Chris Lee has taken 'Iolani to the championship game five times. To me, whether he wins it or not, he's shown the program he's built, and the consistency and standard 'Iolani is setting,”; Kaneshiro said. “;It was only a matter of time before 'Iolani won the championship. 'Iolani is setting themselves as the benchmark and a lot of it has to do with Chris Lee.”;


Player of the Year

Brock Granger, 'Iolani

Coach of the Year
Chris Lee, 'Iolani


First Team

FNicholas Goo'IolaniJr.
FAaron YokoyamaMililaniSr.
FRyan PenaRooseveltSr.
FIkaika FuerteKapaaSr.
MFBrock Granger'IolaniSr.
MFCory NakagawaMililaniSr.
MFJustin MalvarKapoleiSr. 
DMason PuckettAieaSr.
DReid Sakamoto'IolaniSr.
DKyle SuanMililaniSr.
APDanny HigaKalaniSr.
GKChristopher Otani'IolaniSr.


Second Team

Pos Name School Yr.
FJordon Lee'IolaniFr.
FCody SullivanMid-PacificJr.
FWarren SpencerSaint LouisSr.
FMicah UeharaKapoleiSr.
MFKeith Lum'IolaniSr.
MFKevin JohnsPunahouSr.
MFLandon SalvadorMililaniSr.
DKainoa KahuiKamehamehaSr.
DWilliam WrenKapoleiJr.
DJonathon CloutierPunahouJr.
APCody SiaPunahouJr.
GKDaniel DarttLeilehuaSr.


Third Team

Pos Name School Yr.
FMarc HopePac-FiveSr.
FAlessi SiaPunahouSr.
FIkaika MatasPearl CitySo.
FBranden GalapiaWaialuaJr.
MFGareth GomezKamehamehaSr.
MFLucas LamPunahouSr.
MFKeenan SeguanciaRooseveltSr.
DRyan Ten BroekeLeilehuaSr.
DJustin WatanabeMoanaluaSr.
DJershon Baldomero'IolaniJr.
APJared DomingoMid-PacificSr.
GKJay TsuruokaRooseveltJr.

Honorable Mention
Forwards-Max Hannemann, Kahuku; Matthew Nakata, Kailua; Korey Tsubota, Hawaii Prep; Joshua Amoroso, Kalaheo; Jonathan Rodriguez, Kalaheo; Jonathan Fukumoto, Mililani; Gavin Dela Cruz, Pearl City; Evan Igarashi, Leilehua; Devin Alcosiba, Campbell; Alex Fowler, Roosevelt; Ryan Mountcastle, KS-Maui; Noah Ogata, Kamehameha; Denton Langer, Kealakehe; Riley Alcos, Makua Lani.
Midfielders-Kelsey Tsutsui, Moanalua; Mason Nakama, Kalani; Beau Stueber, Kaiser; Keenan Seguancia, Roosevelt; Brandon Sawada, Kealakehe; Jacob Kimi, Kealakehe; Jacob Sandoval, Seabury Hall; Carlos Permansu, Maui
Defenders-Justin Watanabe, Moanalua; Kekoa Bonds, Castle; Brandon Piriyakamjanakul, Kaiser; Collin Sheppard, Kalaheo; Adisa Ahrens-Woodson, Hilo; Connor Snow, Seabury Hall.
Goalkeepers-Preston Miyashiro, Mililani; Yeong Lee, Kaimuki; Oscar Delgado, Kealakehe; Ronnie Powell, Waialua; Christian Taniguchi, Kapaa; Gavin Matsukawa, Punahou; Janoah Osborne, Seabury Hall; Tanner Lee, King Kekaulike.