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Star-Bulletin Sports

Wednesday, September 27, 2000

I L H _ P R E P _ F O O T B A L L

By Ronen Zilberman, Star-Bulletin
Jon Fo has led Kamehameha to a flawless 4-0 record in the ILH

Who throws there?
Friend or Fo?

Kamehameha quarterback
Jon Fo once again goes up against
former classmates at St. Louis
in a huge game

By Dave Reardon

When Jon Fo attended St. Louis School, he had lots of friends on the intermediate football team.

Classmates Kelika Higa, Davin Nakasato, Daniel Inferrera and Kainoa Kaaihili were some of his best buddies.

But when they suited up for practice and games, Fo was not among them. He didn't play football.

"I thought I was too small," he said.

PREP EXTRA Four years later, Fo still isn't playing football for St. Louis -- he's playing a key role against the Crusaders.

Since ninth grade, Fo has attended Kamehameha.

"I thought I'd have a better chance of playing here," he said yesterday at the Warriors' practice field. "It's turned out to be a good decision for me."

Fo is still relatively diminutive for a football player at 5 feet 10 and 170 pounds. But he's big enough to start at quarterback for Kamehameha, and last season he was big enough to lead the Warriors over his former schoolmates, despite the Crusaders' national ranking and statewide dominance.

Fo will try to do it again Friday at Aloha Stadium, as No. 2 Kamehameha (4-0) and No. 1 St. Louis tangle (4-0) for the Interscholastic League of Honolulu first-round title.

The Warriors' joy over their 30-6 victory against the Crusaders in the second round last season didn't last long.

"It was a good accomplishment, but people had a hard time putting it in the past," Fo said.

Just six days later, St. Louis avenged the defeat with a 43-7 romp for the ILH championship. The Crusaders went on to win the inaugural state football tournament.

This time, Kamehameha is out to prove its one victory in three games against St. Louis last season was no fluke.

By George F. Lee, Star-Bulletin
Kamehameha quarterback Jon Fo, left, is stopped for
a short gain in an earlier game this season.

"They deserve a lot of respect," Fo said of the Crusaders, who are ranked in the top 10 in several national polls. "But I try to tell my teammates to have pride, and not to be intimidated by their record. They're just football players, just like us."

Fo has been one of the top offensive players in the ILH this year. He's passed for a league-leading 12 touchdowns, with 670 yards on 39-of-59 passing.

Punahou coach Kale Ane got a close look at Fo last Saturday, when he rifled the Buffanblu secondary for five touchdown passes to five different receivers in Kamehameha's 41-20 victory.

"He has a very strong, accurate arm. We pass defended pretty well, but he was able to connect deep anyway," Ane said. "If he has time to throw against St. Louis, he could do very well."

Fo is also an adept scrambler when needed. He carried 11 times for 75 yards in Kamehameha's season-opening win over Iolani.

"Since I'm not that tall, sometimes I'm more effective outside of the pocket," Fo said.

He was a slotback until junior varsity coaches Jimmy De Fries and Doss Tannehill noticed his arm strength and had him try quarterback three years ago.

"Jon has put in a lot of time to prepare, he's worked very hard. He's also a good student (3.4 grade-point average)," Warriors' coach Kanani Souza said. "He's not the biggest guy in the world, but he's got a big heart."

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