OIA PLAYOFF PREVIEW: Moanalua at Kapolei

Moanalua quarterback Kawika Keama-Jacobe dodged a heavy rain along with Kapolei defenders in a 2014 game. (Honolulu Star-Advertiser/Jamm Aquino.
Moanalua quarterback Kawika Keama-Jacobe dodged a heavy rain along with Kapolei defenders in a 2014 game. (Honolulu Star-Advertiser/Jamm Aquino.

OIA D-I Quarterfinals

The matchup: Moanalua (5-4) vs. Kapolei (7-1)
Location/Time: Kapolei, Friday, 7:30 p.m.
Head-to-head: Kapolei leads 4-1
Last meeting: Kapolei 33, Moanalua 21 (9/5/2015)

Moanalua’s offensive statistics

Updated: Nov. 5, 2016
Alakai Yuen11208-371-162,39127
Ezra Grace68-16-0650
Kea Rodrigues100-3-000
Wyatt McMillan10-1-000
Kea Rodrigues10693112
Alakai Yuen11811504
Bronson Louis-Merry726762
Brandon Bender107462
Jeremy Rodriguez1380
Rasheen Green11160
Chad Shiraishi4350
Mikey Williams2210
Wyatt McMillan11-10
Rylan Miguel101-30
Ryan Ramones101-70
Ezra Grace65-220
Ryan Ramones11841,18016
Rylan Miguel10454425
Brandon Bender10414293
Charles Reed8141110
Darrius Smith25790
Kea Rodrigues86611
Keala Feguis-Perry34501
Ezra Grace65490
Chad Shiraishi45360
Bronson Louis-Merry73140
Idris Thomas II1180
Rasheen Green1110
Kylan Iwamasa22-40

Kapolei’s offensive statistics

Updated: Nov. 11, 2016
Taulia Tagovailoa13320-526-93,91942
Leonard Lee134-12-2580
Nainoa Afong11-1-0-70
Leighton Rosa13582945
Josh Kansana7462895
Antoneo Brown8372494
Solomon Suan714880
Dreyden-Steele Kawewehi712662
Wyatt Perez123270
Isaiah Ahana121170
Tamatoa Mokiao-Atimalala87120
Peni Naulu26110
Kukea Emmsley1150
Riley Asuncion1110
Vai Kamakele13-20
Taulia Tagovailoa1335-1360
Jaymin Sarono121131,13322
Wyatt Perez126891913
Kaeo Alvarez-Ranan12345872
Isaiah Ahana12415683
Tamatoa Mokiao-Atimalala8202141
Josh Kansana7132060
Sam You6141420
Marquis Montgomery44740
Leighton Rosa135581
Antoneo Brown85380
Peni Naulu23270
Solomon Suan7360
Dreyden-Steele Kawewehi7150
Blaze Ortiz11-70

A monumental game for Kapolei takes place Friday night when the Hurricanes attempt to reach the semifinals of the OIA Division I playoffs for just the second time in school history with a victory over Moanalua.

Two offense that love to throw it around go at it with Kapolei quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa, who leads the state with 2,393 passing yards and 26 touchdowns, going up against Moanalua senior QB Alakai Yuen, who has thrown for 1,953 yards and 24 touchdowns.

Tagovailoa, who owns the top seven single-game passing marks in school history, has thrown for more than 400 yards in a game three times. One of those games was in Kapolei’s last meeting over Moanalua, a 33-21 victory last season, when Tagovailoa was 42-for-67 for 448 yards and four TDs.

The Hurricanes are on a six-game winning streak and have scored at least 28 points in each game since suffering their only loss of the season to Waianae, 35-14.

Moanalua made quick work of Castle last week in the first round of the OIA D-I playoffs with a 49-7 win. Na Menehune is 5-1 this season when scoring at least 14 points and 0-3 when held under two touchdowns.

First-year coach Savai’i Eselu has won as many games as any Moanalua team has won since 2012 already. A victory over the Hurricanes would launch Na Menehune into the OIA semifinals for the first time.

Kapolei is considered by many to be the team with the best chance to upset defending champion Kahuku, but this is also uncharted territory for the Hurricanes. Kapolei had nothing to lose when it knocked off Kahuku in the quarterfinals in 2007. This year, it has a lot to lose, most notably a spot in the Open Division of the state tournament.

If you’re looking for two skill position players to watch, check out Moanalua senior receiver Ryan Ramones and Kapolei senior receiver Jaymin Sarono, who both are putting together first team all-state caliber seasons. Ramones is the only player in the state to top 1,000 receiving yards this season (71 receptions, 1,068 yards, 16 TDs) while Sarono has caught 70 balls for 774 yards and 14 TDs.

The difference here is Ramones handles the bulk of Moanalua’s passing offense. Brandon Bender is second on the team with half as many catches (35) for nearly three times as fewer yards (377) than Ramones and three TDs. Sarono has Wyatt Perez (29-501-8) to work off of and junior Kaeo Alvarez-Ranan (22-398-1) has started to come alive in recent weeks.

The winner of this game gets the winner between Campbell and Farrington in the semifinals next week.


  1. east side est October 13, 2016 12:02 pm

    kapolei probly going win but when they reach the kahuku red raiders and them open division teams the kapolei hurricanes will end up getting crush cause they big and soft.all that june jones stuff can go out the door.no qb protection no run game……….#BIG&SOFTFROMDAY1#

  2. ilh October 13, 2016 12:36 pm

    Kapolei going to beat Kahuku this time, be prepared, remember Kaiser beat Kahuku a few years ago, I’m sure it was a long ride back home for Kahuku.

  3. east side est October 13, 2016 1:43 pm

    dream on be real…no bs no games here….big and soft

  4. Chloropicrin October 13, 2016 8:36 pm

    I wouldn’t be suprised to see Moanalua winning this one. These two teams could get into a shootout with the winner being the ram who possesses the ball last. Kapolei will not beat Kahuku of they make it to the OIA. They beat Farrington because Farrington is one dimensional; riding the back #13, they lost to a physical Waianae team and gave up 300+ yards on the ground, imagine what the Big Red will do with an even stiffer/ athletic defense then Waianae, a physical offensive line and a more competent passing game then Farrigton. This is all new for Kapolei, I think they’ll fold under the pressure.

  5. OHHREALLY October 14, 2016 12:10 am

    ilh- I remeber the last prediction you made.. lol

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