Lahainaluna (1-1) was overmatched and outnumbered in this game by the bigger, stronger, and overall more experienced Baldwin Bears (1-0) as the Lunas lost by a score of 40-0. The result was not surprising, as the Luna faithful knew coming into this season that collectively, the Lunas were small in number and lacking experience. Still, it has been quite a while since, as a friend gently put it, the Lunas had their asses handed to them.
Baldwin dominated in every facet of the game. Baldwin's running game led by QB Keenan Ewaliko, Branden Kaupe and Vetekina Malafu shredded the Lunas defense. Missed assignments and missed tackles led to large gains for Baldwin. For the Lunas, it just wasn't their night. The offensive line (most of whom play D-line as well) could not effectively protect the quarterback or create holes for the running game. The usually dependable Kaena Felicilda had way too many drops (the cast/club hand of the defensive back assigned to Felicilda definitely used that club hand to his advantage, knocking the ball out of Felicilda's hands on several occasions). Lahainaluna's kicking game, i.e., the punting game, was horrid. Nine yard punts shanked off the side of the foot and towards the sidelines allowed Baldwin to start its offense on the short end of the field for most of the night. In addition to Sam Filiai, the Lunas also tried Hercules Mataafa and Tytus Lucas in that spot.
|#84 Kaena Felicilda takes down the Baldwin ball carrier.|
|#42 Jared Rocha leaps over defenders looking for positive yardage.|
|In this sequence, the sure hands of #50 Hercules Mataafa|
are able to stop the Bears #5 Branden Kaupe.
|#57 Sam Filiai explodes off the line against Baldwin's #66 Pasoni Tasini|
|#11 Kiko Fonohema scrambling for positive yardage|
|#22 Semisi Filikitonga looking for running room|
|Lahainaluna's cheerleaders during halftime|
|#22 Semisi Filikitonga was one of the Lunas' few bright spots on offense|
|#11 Kiko Fonohema unleashes a bomb for #84 Kaena Felicilda|
|Unfortunately, the pass was out of reach and a bit out of bounds|
|The game was so lopsided that even Cheecho left early.|
|Go get 'em next time!|
MY TWO CENTS
The Lunas were coming off their 4th straight game in 4 weeks and it showed. They looked mentally and physically tired even before the game started. The Bears, on the other hand, were playing their MIL opener and only second game of the season. They were coming off a blow out loss to Edison High School of California so you know that the Bears were going to be up for this one.
Members of the Bears' coaching staff were seen at each of the 3 games played by the Lunas up at the Imu. As such, they had the advantage of scouting this year's version of the Lunas and were well prepared for this game. On the other hand, Baldwin's showing against Edison probably didn't have enough to realistically scout the Bears' squad. It showed. Baldwin prevented the Lunas from doing anything on offense. Kaena Felicilda was shut down with no receptions.
This week is a much needed bye week. The walking wounded continue to hamper the Lunas in terms of depth, experience and on-the-field leadership. Time to recharge the batteries, both mentally and physically.
Next game is on September 16, 2011 against the much improved Maui High School.
Click here for the link to the Maui News article.