Nanakuli, Kaimuki play for state berth

Kaimuki is a different team with Billy Masima carrying the rock. Bruce Asato / Star-Advertiser
Kaimuki is a different team with Billy Masima carrying the rock. Bruce Asato / Star-Advertiser

Nanakuli finally returned to its renovated home field after a long stretch on the road, and the Golden Hawks hope to get another win in their new digs when they host dangerous Kaimuki in a playoff game.

They lost to eventual regular-season, first-place finisher Radford 28-7, then beat Kalani 22-6, ending the Falcons’ playoff hopes.

Nanakuli’s exemplary road success was rewarded.

They get to play at home in this make-or-break playoff game. A win puts the Golden Hawks into the state tourney with one of the OIA’s two D-II state berths. Nanakuli walloped Kaimuki 41-6 back on Sept. 29. Nainoa Banks (1,576 passing yards, 16 TDs) has trusted returnees Isain Wong-Lonzanida (35 receptions, 388 yards, four TDs), Keanu Momoa (34, 481, five) and Clifford Cunningham (31, 454, six).

Kaimuki hasn’t been the same since the early season. The Bulldogs have won five in a row since moving DE Billy Masima to running back. Masima has rushed for 661 yards and seven TDs.

QB Keanu Pratt has gone to Andrew Neves (22 catches, 444 yards, five TDs) for big plays and Torey Faimealelei has been another playmaking receiver.

Kaimuki reached the D-II state final in 2010, beating Kamehameha-Hawaii and Lahainaluna on the road before falling to ‘Iolani in the final. Chester Sua, who went on to play for Washington State, rushed for 423 yards in the state tourney.


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