Akana resigns as Saint Francis football coach

Kip Akana resigned today as St. Francis' football coach. Jamm Aquino / Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

Saint Francis football coach Kip Akana resigned Friday, according to a statement released by head of school Casey Asato at 4:50 p.m.

Asato said he is grateful for Akana’s four years of service running the varsity football program. Akana also headed the intermediate program through the 2012 to 2014 seasons.

Akana will continue as head coach of the St. Francis varsity baseball team.

The Saints (1-8) were undefeated this season until it was found they used an ineligible player and had to forfeit all but one of their wins. St. Francis, which was headed to the state tournament before that, was also not allowed to play at states.

“After long discussion today with the athletic director and head of school, I decided to resign, and spend more time with my family,” Akana said by phone at 5 p.m. Friday. I’ll be coaching the baseball team and we hope to accomplish our goals in baseball.

“Coaching St. Francis football was very challenging and very gratifying. I wouldn’t change anything because the experiences that we had, the coaches and the kids, those are our lasting memories and I enjoyed my time as head football coach.”

Akana took over as the Saints’ varsity head coach in 2015, and he is 18-19 in four seasons. However, on the field (before forfeits) that record was 26-11.

Two years in a row, rival Damien kept St. Francis from going to the state tournament with 20-12 (2015) and 13-12 (2016) elimination victories.

This year, the Saints were 9-0 with a state-tournament berth locked up until an announcement was made Oct. 19 that they would not be going due to the ineligible player. Pac-Five, a rival Interscholastic League of Honolulu team, competed at states in St. Francis’ place.