OIA Boys Soccer
Kalaheo races by Waialua for OIA D2 title


   



Sat, Jan 26, 2019 @ Kaiser


Final 1st 2nd OT 2OT PK Tot
Waialua (4-10-0) 1 0 - - - 1
Kalaheo (12-3-0) 0 3 - - - 3
K. Takahashi, KHEO, J. Amasiu, KHEO, E. Sheridan, WLUA

HAWAII KAI — The Kalaheo boys soccer team has waited a long year for what they felt was their chance at redemption after a heartbreaking loss in last season's championship game.

Senior Haden Brown assisted on all of the Mustangs' goals to help Kalaheo race by Waialua, 3-1, to capture the Oahu Interscholastic Association Division II title at Kaiser High School.

Kai Takahashi, Jack Lemonds and Jaden "Pudge" Amasiu were the beneficiaries of Brown's set-up-passes as each netted goals in the second half after a 1-0 deficit at halftime.

It was a windy Saturday evening in Hawaii Kai with mauka to makai gusts so strong that players often had to have a teammate temporarily hold the ball in place for free kicks.

"It was a big factor. It was just hard to get it up," Brown said. "When we had the wind going our way, it was much better. Wind was bad, it slowed down the game a lot."

Waialua started the game with the wind in its favor as they took advantage with a 25th-minute goal. Goalkeeper Likeke Lacar corralled a shot from Kalaheo's Lorenzo Hernandez about 25 yards out and then launched a punt nearly down the entire length of the field. After a brief back-and-forth scuffle, Manae Yerxa snuck a quick shot to Lawrence Moiha, who ricocheted the pass through six Kalaheo defenders to Ezra Sheridan where he found the back of the net across from about 12 yards out.

"First half, we tried to keep it on the ground but obviously it wasn't working out," Brown said. "Second half it just all came into play."

Kalaheo got the equalizer in the 59th minute with a cross-field pass from Brown to Takahashi. Off a corner kick from the left side, Teo Stohler rebounded the pass back to Haden, who sent it flying across the field for Takahashi to tap it in from nearly the same spot Waialua's Sheridan scored his goal.

"We needed a goal and the pressure was on," Takahashi said. "Eventually one of the crosses worked and I tapped it in. But credit to the team for delivering it."

Ten minutes later off another corner kick — this time from the right side — Brown again fielded a rebounded pass and lofted it up toward the goal for Lemonds to head it in from five yards directly in front of the net.

For insurance, Amasiu headed in another goal just four minutes later again with help from Brown off another rebound — this time, after a throw-in from the right corner.

"It's definitely redemption. After last year's loss, we were devastated," Takahashi said, referring to last year's 6-5 loss in penalty kicks to McKinley. "We needed this, for sure."

Amasiu, Lemonds and Takahashi also netted the Mustangs' last three PKs in the championship match a year ago.

Saturday's win marks Kalaheo's seventh OIA title in school history and the first since 2013. This all comes a week after the Mustangs girls team captured their third league plaque with a win over Waianae.

"It feels great," Takahashi said. "We're ready for states too. Look out for us."

Both Kalaheo and Waialua will be joined by Waipahu — who defeated Aiea in the third place game earlier Saturday — as the three OIA representatives in next month's The Queen's Medical Center/HHSAA Boys Soccer Division II State Championships at the Waipio Peninsula Soccer Complex.

No OIA team has won a state title since the two-division split started for the 2007–08 season.

The Mustangs are seeking a third state championship while it would be the first one in school history for either Waialua or Waipahu.



Reach Spencer Honda at [email protected].


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