Entering weekend No. 2 of ILH football, Wade Inn is stoked for his Kamehameha squad.
The team formerly known as the junior varsity is now a I-AA team — the ‘B’ squad of one of the league’s premier, powerhouse programs. The Warriors are on schedule to face Damien on Friday afternoon, 5 p.m., at Aloha Stadium.
“We are just excited for the opportunity to play football after all this time because of COVID,” Inn said.
His team had a bye through the first week, when ‘Iolani blanked Damien, 28-0, and Punahou rallied past Kamehameha’s Open Division squad, 33-28. This week, the Saint Louis-Punahou game has already been postponed due to protocols.
“I’m trying to keep my feelings neutral since things can change at the drop of a dime,” Inn said. “But I’m positively optimistic for the season.”
Early September, and not a single game yet, but it certainly beats the alternative of no football at all.
“We are very grateful that in the preseason we were able to scrimmage three teams, Kailua, Castle and Pac-Five, to get meaningful reps and film for evaluation of our team,” Inn said. “The speed of the game will be an adjustment for our sophomores and freshmen. It was awesome to be able to scrimmage Pac-Five’s varsity team to get a measure of where we are at. They’re a tough matchup in terms of size and speed, but our kids had the courage to compete. We are hitting the weight room a little extra to add some beef to our players.”
Inn and his staff have leadership on the young roster.
“Right now, a player that sticks out from our offense is (lineman) Hudson Lee. He lifts the people around him in the trenches and sets the tone for the team,” Inn said. “On defense, there’s a bunch of solid leaders, one of which is sophomore Tristan Colby Waiamau-Galindo. He’s always on time and is the last one to leave to make sure things are in order. He gives his best effort day in and day out.”
The I-AA Warriors will play D-I Damien and ‘Iolani one time, and Saint Louis I-AA twice.
“It’s always a tough battle in the ILH no matter the division level, so it’s very competitive. We know that our team is like David from the Bible going up against giants in our league, so it’s definitely time to imua,” Inn added.
The coach also credited parents, families who have endured the drastic, necessary changes to high school football culture.
“Shout out to all the families that sacrifice to have their child play without any fans in the stands at this time. I’m hoping we can get some spectators to support all the players at some point in the season.”