Kapolei to
forfeit 60-0

The football team
used a player left off
an eligibility list

One of the hottest football teams in the state is forfeiting a lopsided victory.

Due to a clerical error, Kapolei's 60-0 win over Kalani on Aug. 29 is going to become a forfeit loss, according to Hurricanes athletic director Elden Esmeralda.

When the school submitted its football eligibility list to the Oahu Interscholastic Association, the name of a Kapolei player was inadvertently omitted. The player briefly played in the White Conference opener against the Falcons, but didn't get into the team's subsequent contests.

"It's disheartening and it's making me and the rest of the team sick to our stomachs," Hurricanes coach Darren Hernandez said. "For a small, minor clerical error, they're going to take away a resounding victory."

The forfeit is all but official. Esmeralda submitted paperwork to the OIA, reporting the mistake and stating Kapolei's intent to forfeit for using an ineligible player.

He says that he feels it's unfortunate that the kids have to suffer.

"I take full responsibility for the mistake, and I would like to apologize to the community," Esmeralda said.

OIA executive secretary Dwight Toyama and league football coordinator Richard Townsend are aware of the situation, but, as of yesterday afternoon, neither had seen Esmeralda's written report. Esmeralda and Townsend both said yesterday that the rule is clear-cut and that it's highly likely the OIA would make the forfeit official.

The real intent of the eligibility list rule is to make sure there aren't any illegal players, such as players who are academically ineligible or players living outside of the school's district who don't have an exemption, according to Hernandez. The coach said the player would have been eligible if he hadn't been left off the list mistakenly.

"If we didn't report it, chances are no one would have ever known," Hernandez said. "It's a real downer for our morale."

Esmeralda said it's the first time Kapolei has forfeited a game in any sport because of an eligibility list omission. But he recalls some instances where other schools have been similarly penalized in various sports.

When Kapolei's forfeit becomes official, the Hurricanes' record will fall from 4-0 overall and 3-0 in the OIA White to 3-1 and 2-1.

Kalani's forfeit victory ends the state's longest losing streak. The Falcons had lost 20 in a row before their game against Kapolei and then lost three more after that for a total of 24 in a row.


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