Kealakehe Regroups to Defeat El Capitan
Kealakahe coach Sam Papalii wanted his Kealakehe Waveriders to get back to focusing on football, a tough task considering a shutout by Kamehameha-Kapalama and numerous suspensions from an off-the-field incident.
His quarterback, Jordan Cristobal, delivered the kind of performance that his coach needed. The senior quarterback rushed for 99 yards and a pair of touchdowns while throwing for 216 yards and another touchdown to lead the Waveriders to a 35-13 victory over El Capitan High School.
The Vaqueros spent all week mixing with business with pleasure on the island, but seemed to forget to get out of their hotel room to start the game. After the offense went three-and-out, Kealakehe raced to an early lead with a 67 yard touchdown run from Cristobal on an option play. Following a successful two-point conversion attempt, the Waveriders had an 8-0 lead with 9:19 remaining in the opening quarter.
That score seemed to wake up the visitors from just outside East San Diego County. Their next drive took them into Waverider territory, but stalled out when Kyler O’Halloran sacked quarterback Brad Cagle on a 4th-and-12 play. It was the first of three sacks for O’Halloran on the evening.
Kealakehe (2-1) continued to move the football against their opponents, picking up another score to open the second quarter. Cristobal successfully ran in a quarterback sneak from a yard out to give his team a 14-0 lead with 9:27 remaining in the first half.
El Capitan (0-1) responded perfectly on their very next drive with a 13-play drive that took them 70 yards to paydirt. The drive ended when senior Austin Watson, who had two previous plays on third down that moved the chains, rushed in from four yards out to get his team within eight, 14-6, with 5:24 left in the half.
The momentum stayed with the California kids. The ensuing kickoff was a short bouncer that was recovered by the Vaqueros at the Kealakehe 39 yard line. Kealakehe’s defense would hold, however, as they stopped El Capitan five yards short of a fourth down conversion to take control of the football. They would then drive down the field and set up a 28-yard field goal attempt for Keoni Yates, which went through to give Kealakehe a 17-6 lead just before halftime.
Just like each of the first two quarters, Kealakehe started strong in the third quarter. After Yates returned the opening kickoff to midfield, he closed the drive with a 37-yard field goal to push the Kealakehe lead to 20-6 with 9:10 remaining in the quarter.
The Waveriders were without Cristobal at quarterback for two plays midway through the quarter for an unspecified reason. Vincent Paogofie took his place in a tough position with the ball at their own 16 yard line. After penalties knocked them back to the one, Paogofie fumbled his snap, and Brad Holley recovered it in the end zone for an El Capitan touchdown, putting the score at 20-13 with 5:13 remaining in the quarter.
It didn’t take long for Kealakehe to respond to the challenge, as Kainoa Kipapa finished up the very next drive with a three-yard touchdown run to give Kealajehe a 27-13 lead. Kipapa finished the game with 38 yards rushing on 14 carries.
The Waveriders put the final stamp on their victory late in the fourth quarter when Cristobal found Yates for a 40-yard touchdown strike. After the two-point run was successful, Kealakehe sported a 35-13 lead, which would ultimately be the final score.
Cristobal found five different receivers through the air, including Lennox Jones, who caught seven passes for 110 yards. He also ran for 42 yards on three carries. Their defense was just as spectacular, however, as they accumulated seven sacks against Vaqueros quarterbacks in the game. They also held El Capitan to 54 yards rushing for the entire game.
Kealakehe plays its third of four straight home games next Saturday when they open up league play against Waiakea High School.
El Capitan 0 6 7 0 – 13
Kealakehe 8 9 10 8 – 35
1st (9:19) – Kealakehe: Jordan Cristobal 67 yd TD run (2-PT conversion good)
2nd (9:27) – Kealakehe: Cristobal 1 yd TD run (XPT failed)
2nd (5:24) – El Capitan: Austin Watson 4 yd TD run (Cromwell XPT blocked)
2nd (:03) – Kealakehe: Keoni Yates 28 yd Field Goal
3rd (9:10) – Kealakehe: Yates 37 yd Field Goal
3rd (5:13) – El Capitan: Brad Holley 1 yd fumble recovery for TD (Travis Hulsey XPT good)
3rd (1:44) – Kealakehe: Kainoa Kipapa 3 yd TD run (Yates XPT good)
4th (1:06) – Kealakehe: Cristobal 40 yd TD pass to Yates (2-PT run good)
Kohala forfeits game against Kamehameha-Hawaii
Kamehameha-Hawaii improved to 4-0 on the season without having to make a play, as Kohala had to forfeit their game because they did not have enough players to field a team.
Kohala waited until the final day to declare that they would be able to play football as they waited to see if they could get enough kids to try out for the team. This would have been their first game of the season.