Thursday, September 29, 2011

MIL Football: LAHAINALUNA 21, KAMEHAMEHA SCHOOLS MAUI 7 – September 24, 2011

With the Division II lead on the line, the Lunas welcomed back several players from the ranks of the injured reserve – including Kiko Fonohema, Jacob Kenolio-Dusenberry, Chanse Uyeda, Sam Filiai, Jonah Reyes – all of whom made key contributions in the Lunas’ 21-7 win over Kamehameha Schools Maui.

Kenji Kawaguchi, a former Lahainaluna High School/University of Hawaii star football player and
long-time director of the MIL, continues to mentor and be a positive role model for the youth of Maui
While the Lunas on offense are not as explosive, high-scoring or deep as teams of the recent past, this young team continues to grind it out as the players continue to try to improve and develop some chemistry.

After getting first and goal, the Lunas were unable to punch it in on three plays.

With 4th and 1 at the goal line, the Lunas lined up for the field goal. But Coach Tihada called time out to think it over.

At the end of the time out, the offense came running onto the field. Rather than a running play, the Lunas ran a play action. Avoiding a sack, Kiko scrambled and found Jonah Reyes in the end zone with a spectacular leaping one hand grab for the touchdown.

On Defense, the Lunas constantly put Warriors' QB Kalai Yap under pressure.

Leading 7-0 with just about 2 minutes left in the first half, the Lunas inexplicably called for a fake punt from their own 30 yard line. The play failed miserably as punter Kenolio-Dusenberry was tackled for a 6 yard loss. The Warriors were literally given great field position with just 2 minutes left. The Warriors took advantage and scored a touchdown to even up the score 7-7 at halftime.

After Bronson's fumble recovery, freshman Jared Rocha managed to get a first down on a pass. This set up Semisi Filikitonga's 25 yeard run for a touchdown to make the score 21-7.

My Two Cents
I guess the new uniforms only came in white. The Lunas were back to their old red top/ red bottom uniforms. I was looking forward to seeing a new look.
No wide shot on the alma mater this time. I instead chose to focus on the faces of the players. I also did a shot of the players in line, facing the flag during the Star Spangled Banner.
My favorite shot was of injured John Lacuesta, sitting on the bench late in the 4th quarter, head resting back on the top of one crutch and his other crutch to his side. Having been on crutches for 6 months when I tore my Achilles, I know how uncomfortable it is to be on crutches. Hope John gets well soon.

And to the other John, get well soon, too!

Luckily, he wasn’t hit when the action spilled onto the sidelines – literally. Apparently, when Tytus Lucas made an interception near the Lunas sideline late in the 4th quarter (a shot which I did not get because it happened on the far end and my angle was poor), Bronson Kaina took out a Warrior player on the sideline. Water was spilled everywhere.  Apparently, punches were thrown by the Warrior player but the personal foul penalty went only against Bronson. Huh? Too bad I didn’t get any shots of that brouhaha.

I also missed out on shots of Warrior QB Connor Yap getting sacked and fumbling the ball, which was picked up by Bronson Kaina who returned it quite a number of yards. Feleti Taufa ended up without his helmet on the play. It would have been a nice shot to see how his helmet came off. At the time, I was talking story with student trainer Amanda Arakawa, who was curious to know how many pictures I take per game and what criteria I use when selecting what to post. Gotta stop talking on the sidelines! I keep missing my shots! Ha ha

Playing Kamehameha is always awkward because there are always players for Kamehameha with Lahaina ties. For this game, I made sure to get shots of #26 Ken Kanemitsu (son of Kathy Felicilda) and #34 Kamaka Keawekane (Mitzi Colon). Also Leonore Amano asked me to take photos of her friend's son, #8 Kalai Yap.
Noticed Ben Juan at the game taking photos. I thought he only shot Baldwin games. According to Denton, he is apparently taking photos on behalf of the Maui News since Amanda Cowan left. How come they didn't ask me to do that gig? Ha ha, just joking. Mr. Juan takes good pictures. Still, it seems like the Maui News is returning back to the old Central-bias of the olden days. Oh well. More reason for me to keep on shooting Lahaina sports!

No games the next two weeks! What am I going to do?!
For the Maui News article on the game, click here.

For more of my photos from the game, click here.

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