Mililani’s defense is for real

by Billy Hull on October 20, 2013

Leilehua's Randy Neverson fumbled after getting hit by a Mililani defender on Saturday night.. (Krystle Marcellus / Star-Advertiser)

Leilehua’s Randy Neverson fumbled after getting hit by a Mililani defender on Saturday night. (Krystle Marcellus / Star-Advertiser)

Maybe the headline on this post is stating the obvious, but it’s worth repeating after Mililani’s 21-9 win over Leilehua on Saturday in the OIA Red quarterfinals.

The Trojans’ defense is legit.

Mililani’s defensive unit failed to give up a single point as Leilehua scored on a fumble return for a touchdown and a safety. The Mules, who had scored 66 against Waipahu and 54 versus Moanalua in their last two games, were held to 145 total yards of offense.

Leilehua senior Justin Jenks got the start at quarterback but could do very little against the Mililani pass rush. Any success the Mules had came running the ball with Randy Neverson and Ikaika Piceno.

Once the Mules got in third-and-long situations however, they had no chance. Leilehua was 0-for-11 on third-down conversions.

Mililani’s pass rush is ferocious with defensive end Kelii Padello leading the way. Padello had two sacks in the game and has recorded eight sacks in the three Mililani games I’ve seen this season (four vs. Punahou, two in each game against Leilehua). He also came up with a huge tackle for loss, stopping Piceno on fourth-and-goal from the 1.

Padello had plenty of help in this game as 6-foot-3, 260-pound defensive lineman Rex Manu had two sacks. Junior Tamatoa Silva (6-2, 270) also had a sack and senior linebacker Kaimana Wilson (5-10, 185) made two big plays late, sacking Jenks on fourth down and intercepting a pass to seal the victory.

Mililani has held four teams below 10 points, including Moanalua in interleague play. No. 1 Punahou was held to its lowest scoring output of the season in a 24-14 win back in August.

Teams can run on the Trojans, but one thing seems certain. If Mililani can get a lead and force opposing teams to be one-dimensional, then the Trojans have you exactly where they want you.

Up next: Kahuku in the OIA Red semifinals on Thursday night at Aloha Stadium.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Dash October 20, 2013 at 2:55 pm

Punahou’s lowest scoring this season was against Helix.

Leilehua actually scored a offensive touchdown on Mililani but it was negated by a inadvertent whistle. (So in the books it didn’t count but to me he got the ball across the goal line and there was no offensive penalties. Assist to the refs) With or without the inadvertent whistle the Trojans would not have been able to prevent that score. But officiating errors are part of the game, and it was still early in the game to where the Mules could have bounced back. Yes it was a momentum killer but its still part of the game.

So technically you’re half right. Which half is up to you.

Dash October 20, 2013 at 3:35 pm

Mililani has held four teams below 10 points, including Moanalua in interleague play. No. 1 Punahou was held to its lowest scoring output of the season in a 24-14 win back in August.

Punahou’s lowest scoring output this season was against Helix of California.

As far as giving up a point to the mules offense, technically you’re right. But regardless of the inadvertent whistle the Trojans were not going to stop that scoring play on their own (Assist to the refs)

Did that play cost the Mules the game? I say no. It was still early in the game and the Mules should’ve been able to bounce back. Was it a momentum killer? Yes, but not one that decided the game. Refs error are part of the game.

posterized09 October 20, 2013 at 4:15 pm

Hey DASH… Why did you post twice? Did you think you were logged into one of your fake accounts? lol

Anyway good luck to Mililani. This will be their best chance to win a championship without an asterisk being that this is Kahuku’s worst team since the 1996 season (when they won 1 game against Darren Johnson’s Kailua team).

Dash October 20, 2013 at 5:28 pm

No fake accounts. It’s just I couldn’t see my first post and thought it didn’t go through.

Billy Hull October 20, 2013 at 11:00 pm

Thanks for the correction. I meant to clarify in games against teams from Hawaii.

pssryby October 21, 2013 at 9:56 pm

hey posterized09, this is not kahukus worst team since 1996, in 2007 they lost in the first round to kapolei and ended the season at 6-3. Right now Kahuku is 6-3 and made it past the first round.

- the 2007 team was one of those teams that could only run the ball and it was very frustrating watching them play. 2013 kahuku offense is actually pretty decent and can score, its just that their defense is hideous but with proper adjustments in that waianae game they have improved and probably sparked a serious push for an OIA title.

Also in 1996 they won two games not one. bethca dont know who that second win was against.

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