Waianae learns lessons in loss to No. 1 Saint Louis

Waianae linebacker Kana‘i Mauga ran back an interception against Saint Louis during the first half on Saturday. Photo by Jamm Aquino/jaquino@staradvertiser.com.

They’re not clones by any means, but the Waianae Seariders aren’t a whole lot different from the Farrington Governors at this point.

Both teams, ranked in the Star-Advertiser top 10, are relatively young. Each has a massive number of first-year starters. Farrington lost to an ILH powerhouse, Kamehameha, 24 hours before Waianae took on ILH and state defending champion Saint Louis. Waianae, though, does have more returnees with experience. There just wasn’t much the Seariders could do when Saint Louis’ first-year starting quarterback, Chevan Cordeiro, went to Plan Z.

On several occasions, with his passing options denied, the pin-point passer found gaps and turned them into chunks of yardage during the Crusaders’ 49-7 victory at Raymond Torii Field. On one hand, Waianae’s secondary did a fairly solid job of coverage. Nobody really expected Cordeiro’s instincts and speed to be major factors.

“Yeah, he surprised me a lot,” Waianae All-State defensive end Kana‘i Mauga said. “That touchdown he got in the first quarter, we’d been working on the running-back runs and the passing, so it was a shocker to us.”

That score, on a 16-yard scramble, came after he couldn’t find an open receiver. Later in the first half, Cordeiro added an option keeper for a TD. It wasn’t a dominant play. He lunged just far enough on fourth-and-goal to get the nose of the pigskin across the goal line. But it was also the first time Saint Louis offensive coordinator Ron Lee called the speed option in the game, and now, perhaps every defensive coordinator on Saint Louis’ schedule will have to keep a spy on the senior slinger.

Both Cordeiro and backup Maika Bonner went through their progressions and had little hesitation about their next option by air or land. Meanwhile, the defensive unit protecting Waianae’s end zone showed signs of resistance against the Crusaders. It wasn’t enough to stop Saint Louis, but Mauga, who is lining up all over the field as a senior, knows his young teammates need to persevere.

“It gets really tough. You see the scoreboard and we’re losing, and everybody starts to drop their heads,” said Mauga, who never stopped sprinting from sideline to sideline.

Even during possession changes, he raced on and off the field. He had Waianae’s only takeaway, picking off a Cordeiro pass and returning it deep into the red zone.

“It’s not just my job, but all of us as captains. It’s 100 percent mental. It’s a learning process,” he said. “It’s not about losing. It’s how you bounce back and how you respond to a loss.”

Seariders coach Walter Young doesn’t think twice about scheduling powerhouses in preseason. Last year, it was Kamehameha that came to the Leeward side.

“It’s great learning. That’s why we want to play these teams. You’ll go through some trials and tribulations, and we’ll get better as we go,” the third-year head coach said. “The defense flew around and gave maximum effort. From there, we can teach things. I like our chances. You see all the potential we have. We just have to keep the kids’ spirits up and get better together.”

Saint Louis has been through the rough patches, and now there are experienced returnees at key positions, including the receiving corps. The Crusaders looked like a team in mid-season form. Waianae, like Farrington, is in an experimental lab of sorts as players figure things out.

“Right now, it’s preseason and we’re still trying to get out the bugs. You can see there’s a couple of errors, brain farts in there,” Young said. “Everything that happened, we can learn from it and get better. We’ll evaluate the film and see where we can get better as coaches to help these kids get better are reach their maximum potential.”


  1. Whhy August 6, 2017 7:11 am

    Actually anyone who saw the QB’s huddle highlights would have had a pretty good idea the kids a runner.

  2. Coach C August 6, 2017 7:53 am

    What’s the story with Rosario? Is he with Liberty?? Waianae has a killer schedule. With a Farrington blow out,Castle blow out, Waianae blow out and Leileihua struggle with St.F, how can anyone talk about specific teams being in a Premier Open league. OIA doesn’t have the luxury or the money of the ILH (plus the recruiting). Plus with Iolani claiming D2 status? I’m mean even St.Louis got more trainers and coaching staff the Kaiser got players.

  3. Choloropicrin August 6, 2017 8:22 am

    Rosario is at Waianae, but I don’t think it would have made a difference because he still needs linemen to block.

  4. Leeboy August 6, 2017 8:34 am

    I am looking for my braddah 88. He been quiet since states. Chehuuu

  5. BG Grad August 6, 2017 8:39 am

    Overall, the OIA seems pretty weak this year, with the exception of Kahuku, who is always elite

  6. BG Grad August 6, 2017 8:40 am

    As far as iolani being in D-II this year, they only have 37 players. They should be in D-II

  7. Knation August 6, 2017 9:46 am

    @bg grad mililani is also tough. Kapolei seems to have a good defense but needs to improve on offense.

  8. Alohachef August 6, 2017 9:47 am

    Rumors are that Rosario is contemplating relocating to Las Vegas and attend Liberty. As of yet, no solid decision. It would be a huge loss for Waianae if he does transfer.

  9. anywaaaays!! August 6, 2017 10:45 am

    Lose money. Everyone knows Kahuku is where it’s at!

  10. anywaaaays!! August 6, 2017 12:56 pm

    ^ Took a while for the edufirst troll to copy my name…it doesnt matter because the original Anywaaays always speaks truth and makes excellent points all the trolls only talk ish which makes them look stupid.

    Anyway, I been telling you all for years that when the ILH, specifically Cal Lee after his 2015 title loss to Kahuku….says…”It would be nice to join leagues so we can get used to playing the OIA in the regular season”…. BS!! All he is saying that Kahuku is the only team he wants to play during the season because he cry baby when he lose to them in the title game. Look at the blow outs STL put on Waianae two years in a row.



  11. Just a Parent August 6, 2017 1:55 pm

    A lot of kids didn’t make the minimum GPA from last years 4th quarter report card. You need it in order to play the upcoming football season ever player knows this. I think it falls on the parents and child to maintain grades after football season. Your a STUDENT ATHLETE not ATHLETE STUDENT!!!

  12. Choloropicrin August 6, 2017 2:42 pm

    There’s a reason why Rosario finest have any offers is because he can’t do it in the classroom. Going to Liberty won’t be any different, if you can’t make it in the classroom. Waianae should just play like they don’t have him already, focus on who they have that can do it in the class and on the field.

  13. anywaaaays!! August 6, 2017 7:35 pm

    Look at this wannabe. Everyone knows who I am. Why you might ask? Cuz I am the smartest guy on here. We shouldn’t even play out the season. Everyone knows Kahuku is the best. We bang on the North Shore. Everyone wishes they were me. I won 3 state titles. St. Louis couldn’t touch me. That’s why Cal had to come back and recruit. Like DJ Khaled says, “We da best!”

  14. GetAGrip August 6, 2017 10:07 pm

    Rosario has grades. He infact has had a Cum GPA of 3.5 for the past 3 years. Just because a player doesn’t play @Cholorpicrin it sure doesn’t mean He doesn’t have grades!! You should get Your facts straight before assuming anything!!

  15. Hyn August 6, 2017 10:46 pm

    Whyy- if you saw the way Waianae was blitzing I think you would be running too.

  16. rrforlfiebaby August 7, 2017 7:49 am

    Tough loss for a young Searider team; they’ll get better as the season rolls along. Crusader D looks really good…looking forward to see the Crusaders bang with the mainland teams.


  17. Mason August 7, 2017 10:50 am

    Rosario can’t play this year because he played in the All- star game last year. He’s ineligible and probably going to go play in Vegas.

  18. anywaaaays!! August 7, 2017 1:23 pm

    I hope the Waianae community realize that they got the talent to win a State title but they need to keep it all in Waianae, the more local kids stay in their own district the weaker the ILH will become, I know its wishful thinking because the ILH have resources and money to lure any kid and I think its wise to get a private school education.

    But blood is thicker then money and Kahuku is an example that you can stay in a public school and still excel in college.

    Farrington, Waianae, Kapolei are 3 schools with fan bases that are waiting for a title, I bet those fan bases will rival or even surpass Red Raider nation once they start playing Championship football. It all starts with keeping your talent in your home district.

  19. Former OIA insider August 7, 2017 2:49 pm

    Rosario has the grades, should probably pick it up in the classroom as well, but grades aren’t the issue. It’s a matter of fulfilling off season requirements asked of each returning player by the head coach. Waianae doesn’t have enough pieces to make a run at a title. Bench is weak and don’t push starters. It’s the majority of kids now days, LAZY! Kapolei has been working hard in the off season recruiting. A lot of transfers, find ways to circumvent the transfer rule. It don’t matter they aren’t winning a title either. There is no parity, ILH just wants more teams on its schedule when talking about the merger. In the end its St. Louis vs Kahuku again.

  20. Choloropicrin August 7, 2017 10:31 pm

    One just needed to see how Rosario was acting on the sideline during Waianae’s scrimmages, throwing his pads down, his body language to agree with @formeroiainsiders statement of not fulfilling off-season requirements, and perhaps putting himself before team.

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