They have combined to provide fans with two memorable state championship games in each of the past two seasons.
Saint Louis, the reigning Open Division state champion, and Kahuku, the 2015 state champion which has lost only once in two years against Hawaii opponents, were both selected to Max Preps’ preseason list of the top 100 teams in the nation released on Thursday.
Max Preps released its list in no particular order. A total of 28 states were represented in the top 100 with Hawaii one of 20 states to have multiple teams. California, Florida and Texas led the way with 12 teams listed.
On Kahuku: “The Aloha State has produced some of the best quarterbacks over the last decade and now add Class of 2020 prospect Sol-Jay Maiava to the list. The Red Raiders have gone 33-4 over the last three seasons; don’t expect anything to change in 2017. Makoa Freitas takes over as the interim head coach and he will have one of the most talented teams in all of Hawaii.”
On Saint Louis: “The Crusaders won the inaugural Open Division state championship last season against Kahuku but will have to find a way to replace 5-star quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, arguably the best quarterback the state has seen since Marcus Mariota. Class of 2018 Hawaii commit Chevan Cordeiro should help keep St. Louis among the state’s best. Faatui Tuitele checks in as a Top-15 recruit overall in the 2019 class and 3-star defensive back Isaiah Tufaga will help form one of the best defenses from the Aloha State.”
The Crusaders are scheduled to play Narbonne (Calif.), also ranked in the top 100, on Oahu the weekend of September 22. Kahuku will travel to Las Vegas to play Bingham (Utah), a top-100 team, in the second game of the Polynesian Football Classic at Sam Boyd Stadium on Sept. 9.
Bingham is 26-3 in its last 29 games and the defending 5-A state champion in Utah. Narbonne was one win away from playing in the Division 1-AA CIF state championship game last year.