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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Friday, October 19, 2001

Kahuku can clinch OIA Red

By Wes Nakama
Advertiser Staff Writer

Think of college football's "Rivalry Week" — when Cal plays Stanford, Auburn meets Alabama and Michigan squares off with Ohio State.

Castle's Joel Botelho is the OIA Red Conference's leading passer.

Advertiser library photo

That's what this weekend will be like in the high school ranks, with much more at stake than just bragging rights.

There are key traditional and regional matchups with postseason implications in the O'ahu Interscholastic Association, Big Island Interscholastic Federation and Maui Interscholastic League.

Also, tonight in the OIA:

Kahuku (6-0) can clinch the Red Conference championship with a victory over Campbell (3-3); 'Aiea (6-0), Roosevelt (5-1) and Waipahu (6-1) each can clinch playoff berths with victories over Kaiser (3-3), Moanalua (1-5) and Pearl City (2-4), respectively; and a playoff spot will be clinched by the winner of Mililani (4-3) vs. Wai'anae (4-2).

Here is a closer look at the rivalry games in the OIA, BIIF and MIL:

Kailua at Castle

  • Where: Castle High School, 45-386 Kane'ohe Bay Drive
  • When: Tonight, 25 minutes after 5 p.m. JV game
  • Records: Kailua 6-1 overall, 5-1 OIA Red Conference; Castle 5-2 overall, 5-1
  • Last week: Kailua defeated Farrington, 28-14; Castle defeated Campbell, 23-0

Notes: This game between Windward O'ahu rivals features two of the state's top all-around quarterbacks in Castle's Joel Botelho and Kailua's Taleki Mailau. Botelho is the Red Conference's leading passer (1,380 yards) and rusher (502). Mailau has passed for 868 yards and rushed for 178. ... Kailua's running game also has picked up steam, with tailback Brenton Harbottle gaining 234 yards in the past two games.

Kealakehe vs. Konawaena

  • Where: Old Airport Field, Kailua, Kona
  • When: Tonight, 7:15
  • Records: Kealakehe 5-0 overall, 4-0 BIIF; Konawaena 5-1, 4-0
  • Last week: Kealakehe had a bye; Konawaena defeated Honoka'a 16-9.

Notes: Kealakehe, under first-year coach Sam Papali'i, has posted three shutouts in a row and is aiming for a championship in just its third year as a varsity program. The school is located in Kailua, a few miles away from Konawaena's campus in Kealakekua. ... Kealakehe's offense is a hybrid of spread/wishbone/I-bone option schemes and a run-and-shoot passing attack. Senior running back Peter Ebaniz has rushed for close to 600 yards on only 35 carries. "He reminds me of (former Iolani standout) Joe Igber," said Papali'i, a former assistant at Hawai'i, UNLV and Iowa State. Cornerback James Kamoku has returned two interceptions for more than 60 yards and has also scored touchdowns playing quarterback and receiver. ... Konawaena quarterback Gio Griffey directs a power running attack out of the I formation, often giving the ball on toss sweeps to senior running back Taniela Langi (eight touchdowns) or Nano Padillio.

Baldwin vs. Lahainaluna

  • Where: War Memorial Stadium, Wailuku
  • When: Tomorrow, 7:30 p.m.
  • Records: Baldwin 4-2 overall, 1-0 MIL second round; Lahainaluna 5-1, 1-0
  • Last week: Baldwin defeated St. Anthony 37-0; Lahainaluna had a bye

Notes: This rivalry is one of the state's oldest, dating to 1939. ... Lahainaluna won the first-round meeting six weeks ago, 17-7. ... The Bears have two big-play threats in wide receiver/defensive backs A.J. Garbin and Gered Mochizuki. Garbin, whose sister Nicole was the Valley Isle's top female athlete last year, touched the ball five times and had four touchdowns in a 39-23 victory over Maui four weeks ago: kickoff returns of 78 and 83 yards for TDs, and touchdown receptions of 55 and 43 yards among his three catches. He finished with 276 all-purpose yards. Mochizuki, meanwhile, had a 100-yard interception return for a touchdown against Maui and a 93-yard kickoff return for a touchdown the following week against King Kekaulike. ... Lunas running back Abner Nakihei rushed for 89 yards and two touchdowns, and also caught three passes for 78 yards and two more touchdowns in the Lunas' 28-7 victory over King Kekaulike on Sept. 7.