The good news is Kapolei and Mililani got to play a long, nearly 90-minute first half in a football scrimmage Saturday night.
But there was bad news, too. After a 10-minute break, the teams came onto the field for the second half and the referees were gone. According to bystanders, the referees thought the game was over.
Darren Hernandez, the Kapolei coach, was not happy about the referees’ disappearance. He wanted to get some work in for his other quarterbacks on the depth chart.
The Hurricanes’ Christian Rapis, who had a tough time at the start against Mililani’s defense, took all the snaps for his team. He finally got the ball rolling later against the Trojans’ subs and spearheaded a scoring drive.
Ezekiel Waiolama finished a drive off with a TD run.
More on Kapolei later.
Mililani’s offense, for the most part, was in midseason form, moving the ball at will. However, a total of three interceptions were thrown by three-year starter Dillon Gabriel and backup R.J. Javar. The Trojans also fumbled it away once.
Kilifi Malepeai and Jevon Miller scored rushing TDs for Mililani, while Reichel Vegas and Maka Hill caught scoring passes.
In addition, Asher Pilanca scored on a fumble recovery for the Trojans. Teammate Charm Lomibao and Cyrus DeRego made some hard-nosed plays on the defensive side.
“We got a lot of reps, everybody got to play, It was productive,” Mililani coach Rod York said. “Four turnovers and one to the house. The offense needs a lot of work. It doesn’t matter what 11 are on the field, we’ve got to execute better. We saw a lot of good things, too. The defense played good, but overall, we’ve got a lot of work to do as a team.”
Vegas thinks the Trojans will find their way.
“I was expecting a physical game and we were prepared for it,” he said. “We were in our zone heading here. It was definitely a physical game. I’m smaller (5-foot-6, 149 pounds), but I’m not going to back down from anyone. Honestly, I think we’re going to do well (this season). You look back at the past season, we want to do way better (OIA runner-up and a loss in the state Open Division semifinals). When it comes down to the wire, we need to lean on one another.”
For the Hurricanes, Peni Naulu had a sack and Liam McMoore and Destyn White made interceptions. White took his pick in for a touchdown.
“Mililani is a great program,” Kapolei’s Hernandez said. “You saw that tonight. Efficient. Dillon Gabriel, I will say this, is the best QB in the state. He delivered some dimes out there. They have a great chemistry with the receiving corps. They have all their ducks in a row.
“There’s some things we did well. We rushed the passer pretty good and came away with three interceptions. We did other things well on defense, including some tackles for loss. We just gotta be more consistent, and offensively, we haven’t jelled yet.”