D-II teams have winning record against D-I opponents

Kaiser's Dre Falls, shown in a game against Aiea earlier this season, had two receiving touchdowns and intercepted two passes on defense in Kaiser's 31-27 win over Pac-Five on Friday. Photo by Cindy Ellen Russell/Star-Advertiser.

One of the dangers of creating football divisions based on the strength of competition is that one never knows the specific fortitude of a given team from year to year.

Who knew Kaiser was going to fall apart in 2017? Who knew Saint Louis was going to start the season as the No. 12 team in the nation and then move up two spots a few weeks later — after many seasons where the Crusaders didn’t sniff the Top 10?

Did anyone expect ‘Iolani to be this good so far in 2018? Or Waianae off to an 0-3 start?

And while there is no provision in the two-year pilot program of the historic OIA-ILH alliance for schools to move up or down, the chances are there will be such a possible pathway provided in the future if the alliance is renewed for the 2020 season and beyond.

That’s why it was a heartening sight to see many Division I teams schedule Open Division teams for their nonleague games; same goes for Division II scheduling Division I teams.

It’s likely that some schools are not in a division that is the best fit. The scuttlebutt is St. Francis should be in Division I and not D-II. The coaches, reportedly, want to be in D-I. But it didn’t happen, mainly because the ILH wants a 3 Open, 2 D-I and 2 D-II setup and the Saints were the odd-team out.

A less extreme example is Pearl City. The Chargers are always at the top end of D-II and could compete on a yearly basis in the new D-I.

On Maui, where classification is based party on school size, Lahainaluna is a D-II powerhouse that is coming off a 49-6 victory over MIL rival Baldwin, a solid D-I entity.

Can D-I teams Leilehua or Kailua or others ever show that they want in on the Open? Do they want to?

With all of that in mind, listed below are the 2018 inter-tier scores from across the state. These nonleague games are good markers of how a team stacks up against those above or below them.

Division II is 4-3-1 against Division I teams and Waipahu is the only team outside the Open Division to beat an Open team.

Division II vs. Division I
>> Kauai (D-II) 28, Maui (D-I) 14
>> Kaiser 12 (D-II), Aiea (D-I) 12
>> St. Francis (D-II) 28, Radford (D-I) 21
>> ‘Iolani (D-I) 63, Kalani (D-II) 0
>> Roosevelt (D-II) 13, Nanakuli (D-I) 7
>> Kealakehe (D-I) 33, Pearl City 20 (D-II)
>> Maui 41 (D-I) 41, King Kekaulike (D-II) 20
>> Lahainaluna (D-II) 49, Baldwin (D-I) 6

Division I/D-II vs. Open Division
>> Waipahu (D-I) 34, Waianae (Open) 13
>> Farrington (Open) 35, Leilehua (D-I) 16
>> Kapolei (Open) 53, Castle (D-I) 7
>> Kahuku (Open) 61, Konawaena (D-II) 9
>> Campbell (Open) 54, Hilo (D-I) 14


  1. Riders808 August 22, 2018 7:29 pm

    There are 2 sayings I will go by: 1 is anything could happen on any given day and 2 is don’t judge a book by its cover meaning that don’t be deceived by low numbers and don’t let size fool you. Just because one team isn’t as big or has less players doesn’t mean they can’t compete. Everybody is competitive one way or another. It’s about working with what you have and making the most of it.

  2. Northshore August 23, 2018 7:12 am

    The two-year pilot program was based on the team’s past history and not by enrollment as it is done in majority of the states. By using that as a guideline, one never knows the specific fortitude of a team from year to year. There will never be a time when everything will equal out because a small percentage of teams will have the continuity to reload or rebuild. The ILH has a slight edge of reloading because they have the ability to recruit from a pool of talented athletes throughout the state and that’s part of high school football in Hawaii. But really, if teams are selected to participate in a division, their down year should not be of concern…that’s part of competitive sports.

  3. Northshore August 23, 2018 9:09 am

    Should it be a real concern when a Division II beats a Divison I team in todays football pre-season game? Not really, because it’s not unusual for it to happen. It’s called down year or rebuilding year for that particular school that has lost a lot of key players through graduation. But the question that should be asked, would that division II team be able to continue that trend to beat division I teams in the next 2-3 years? Take for example, Castle high school captured the OIA championship in 2002 but have they proven to be able to keep that continuity as being able to compete in the open division? It’s all about consistently reloading or rebuilding the football program.

  4. hawaiiguy57 August 23, 2018 10:20 am

    St. Francis really isn’t a D-II team. They should be playing in D-I. Roosevelt and Kaimuki can also play at D-I. I heard that Kaimuki wanted to move up, but a couple of teams in D-I didn’t want to move down.

  5. Loca1boiAnonymous August 24, 2018 3:10 am

    It’s been so obvious that Saint Francis been sand bagging in multiple sports playing below their competition level and bagging division 2 championships. One the one hand, I think that the jig is up already and they need to move up where they belong. On the other hand, the local sportswriters hype all their accomplishments up and put them on a pedestal for beating D1 opponents in pre season and beating up on D2 competition all year long so why should they move up? They get the best of both worlds.

  6. Jimmy H. August 24, 2018 8:10 am

    I don’t even know where St. Francis is located, but between them and ‘Iolani it’s the ILH’s attempt to capture the title on all three levels. ‘Iolani could compete with open schools, but they’s never win a title which is why they always grouped themselves in a lower football division.

    @Northshore got it right though. It’s all about consistency. Can a school maintain playing at a high level.

  7. Sports Parent August 24, 2018 8:48 am

    I think some of you guys got the right idea on who should be playing up. Iolani has a really good team this year (so far anyway), but were just okay last year. I want to see them play some of the upper level Div 1 teams.

    St Francis has always seemed, as Loca1boi said, to play down, I think so they can capture titles. I wonder how good they will be in the next few years, not just in football, but in all sports, as they try to straighten out their “academic” scholarship issue. I hear rumors about overextending their scholarship budget, but wish someone could put some clarity to that.

    Still, I like the three level system. At least the OC16 games look like playoff games every week. The only problem now is the Div 1 & 2 teams don’t get much airtime. Maybe Spectrum has to step it up and televise even more games. I know they have to get a pretty good level of viewership. My family watches and we don’t even have anyone playing. I

  8. HS FB Fan August 24, 2018 10:52 am

    Good for St. Francis, its up to the other D2 teams to up their play. I believe at one time
    Suiaki Livai was involved in their FB program, hence the Polynesians influx. They recruited heavily, i.e.; Kaneohe, where former youth level coaches convinced some of the good athletes to go there. Unfortunately some of them returned to the public schools with tales of broken financial promises. It as one of you had posted, a chase of odd man out in D1 level. Hard choice with Iolani, Damien, St Francis. I saw the score between St Francis & Waialua, like 69-0? or something like that. Sure hope it wasn’t the case of the Saints running up the score. That has no place in HS football. I believe they have a new young OC who hopefully didn’t run it up intentionally. In the end, HC Kip Akana is responsible for his Ass’ts.

    Yes, would be nice to see some D1 games televised instead of 95% Open Div games, gets kind of old fast seeing the same teams play weekly. And some of the Open teams are struggling to be competitive.

  9. Loca1boiAnonymous August 25, 2018 9:51 am

    I pose the question to you all here: Would any of you be okay with the highest possible individual football award in Hawai’i being given to a player not playing in the open division?

  10. Riders808 August 25, 2018 6:35 pm

    @Loca1boiAnonymous Sure I don’t see why because there are a lot of hidden talent if looked in the right places.

  11. Riders808 August 25, 2018 6:36 pm

    I don’t see why not*

  12. Loca1boiAnonymous August 25, 2018 9:21 pm

    @Riders808 You would give, for example, a player from Iolani or SFS over studs in the open division who have to grind out games during the season against the likes of St Louis, Kahuku, Punahou, Mililani, etc.? I’m talking about the most prestigious individual award whether you consider that the Gatorade award or sumn else.

  13. One for the gipper August 27, 2018 10:45 pm

    HS football fan dont understand what you’re saying by broken financial promises by who?
    I also heard they got new coaches up there as well they must be doing something right even if they are in D2 they look promising this year

  14. One for the gipper August 27, 2018 10:55 pm

    HS football fan after reading your post it sounds like you have something personal against SF you’re hoping they are not running up the score yet I dont see you including St Louis and Mililani when they practically had similar scores what’s good for one is good for all RR4L

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