The only difference between the 2017 and 2018 Damien Monarchs football teams appears to be the fewer number of victories.
The Monarchs generated three fewer points per game and allowed nearly the same amount of points as a year ago, but the effort turned from 10 wins last year to five this season.
Damien averaged 20 points per game but that number has dropped a little bit in each of the last three years. The defense had a hand in the program’s fewest points against (17.7) since 2015. Still, Eddie Klaneski has forged winning seasons four years in a row. Before he came along, the Monarchs had never had successive winning campaigns.
2018 BEST PERFORMANCES
Junior Jake Holtz was the leader in the huddle, throwing for 1,228 yards and nine touchdowns to seven interceptions. Sophomore Duke Ho’ohuli was a capable replacement with 358 yards but six picks. Holtz’s top performance in terms of yardage came in the game in which he threw his first interception and the Monarchs suffered their first loss, an early trip to the continent to visit Mt. Spokane. Holtz put the ball up 48 times in that game, completing 22 passes covering 299 yards with two touchdowns. That performance put Holtz atop the program’s single-game passing list and just a toddler’s pace from being the first Monarch to throw for 300 yards in a game.
Sophomore Aperamo Sulu and junior Logan Lauti combined to pace the rushing attack, with Sulu leading with 546 yards and four touchdowns and Lauti nearly catching him with 494 yards on 32 fewer carries while generating six touchdowns. Sulu had the best single game, torching Nanakuli for 217 yards and three touchdowns on 16 carries before hitting a wall and not really recovering until a 101-yard effort against Kailua. Sulu’s performance against Nanakuli could never compare to the many Damien legends who came before him, but it was the school’s first 200-yard game since Brenan Furtado put up 222 against Pac-Five in 2009.
Damien only had eight players catch passes in 2018, and the bulk of them went to senior Lindon Sevilleja and Lauti. Sevilleja led the way with 552 yards and five touchdowns on 36 catches while Lauti kept pace with a 37-529-4 season. Lauti had the best game of the season on the trip to Seattle, catching eight balls for 138 yards and two touchdowns, the first of his two 100-yard receiving games and most since Austin Ballesteros had 153 receiving yards against Konawaena in the Division II state tournament to end the 2015 season. This season was the first time the Monarchs had two receivers go over the century mark in a game in the same season since Austin Dawson and Makana Kaanoi did it way back in 2008, and the first time they had three 100-yard games in a season since 2003.
It should surprise no one that a Klaneski-led team is built around defense, and it showed in the blowout win at Nanakuli in the second game of the season. The Monarchs hounded Nanakuli quarterback Sedric Crawford into 20 incompletions and an interception and stifled the ground attack to just 23 yards on 22 attempts.
>> Eddie Klaneski is 39-40 in eight seasons and has the best winning percentage of any coach in school history.
>> QB Jake Holtz finished seventh in Division I in passing yards.
>> RB Aperamo Sulu finished fourth and RB Logan Lauti finished fifth in Division I in rushing yards.
>> WR Lindon Sevilleja finished eighth in Division I in receiving yards.
KEY UNDERCLASSMEN IN 2018
>> RB/LB Logan Lauti (5-7, 175), WR/DB Jarvis Natividad (5-9, 170), FB/DL/LB River Iaea (5-9, 210), WR/DB Alohi Arecchi (5-6, 140), QB Jake Holtz (6-3, 215), QB/LB/DB Duke Ho’ohuli (5-10, 175), RB Aperamo Sulu (5-9, 175), DL/LB Fosi Ulima (5-11, 180), LB/DB Ezra Kaina (5-10, 160).
FINAL TEAM STATS