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Javar's first game for Menes one to remember




Athlete of the Week: RJ Javar, Moanalua football
A new school year in some new surroundings provided just the opportunity that RJ Javar needed and it's one that he has met head on.

After serving as the backup to record-breaking quarterback Dillon Gabriel at Mililani in 2018, Javar opted to transfer over the summer to Moanalua, where has fit in nicely thus far.

Javar, a 5-foot-9, 150-pound senior, threw for 318 yards and two touchdowns on 33-of-41 passing (80.5 percent completion rate) in his first varsity start Saturday night to help Na Menehune to a 21-20 win over then-No. 8 Iolani.

It was the season debut for Moanalua and Javar's first game with the program.

"I think he did good, but do I think he can do way better? Heck yeah and he knows it, too," Na Menehune coach Savaii Eselu said. "I shared it with him. He missed a bunch of reads that could have vaulted his (passing) yardage, but all in all he did well. He took care of the ball, except for one scramble, but for technically a new guy in a new system and playing his first game under the lights, I think he did pretty good."

Javar completed 14 of 16 passes in the first half for 156 yards, including a 23-yard TD pass to Lawsen Lee for the game's first score late in the opening quarter.

Eselu said Javar's accuracy is critical for Na Menehune to operate efficiently on offense.

"We're doing the ‘Air Raid' (offense) and RJ is pinpoint accurate, which is perfect because when you run the air raid, everything is below eight yards and you've got to be spot on," Eselu said.

The lone interception Javar was saddled with Saturday came on a Hail Mary pass for the final play of the first half.

"That was my fault," Eselu noted. "I told him, ‘Dude, just throw it. It's fine (because) either we're gonna catch it or they're gonna catch it, but they probably won't be able to return it."

Javar impressed not only with his arm, but his feet as well. He rushed for a team-high 82 yards — perhaps not quite as eye-opening when you consider he had 21 carries — however, the was sacked six times. All of his 15 other rush attempts were Javar ad-libbing and scrambling out of the pocket.

"I didn't call one designed run for him, so he just kind of made it happen with his feet," Eselu said. "He was doing some spins and hurdles and I had to be like, ‘You're not a running back, bro. You gotta slide.' But he can handle. He's kind of a freakish athlete; he throws up some weight in the weight room. For his size, he's very strong. He surprised me."

Eselu said it was Javar's ability to run that impressed him the most Saturday night, when he accounted for five first downs by rush.

"I had an idea he could run, but he never ran really in practice, but his awareness is what also stands out to me. No matter how much pressure was brought, no matter how many breakdowns we had on the o-line, he was still focused, he didn't let that rattle him or faze him at all," Eselu said. "His eyes are always looking downfield, even when he's getting pressured and moving around he's looking down the field for someone to pop open, but against Iolani he made it happen when he ran."

Despite being pestered by rushing Iolani defenders all game, Javar reassured his teammates on the offensive line to keep at it.

"It was kind of funny because the o-line kept apologizing, but RJ being RJ, was saying, ‘We'll be good, don't worry. We'll be OK, no pressure,' " Eselu said. "I'm just standing there like, ‘Wow,' because rarely does that come out from a quarterback, let alone high school kids."

Eselu said Javar's transition into the program has been a smooth one in a couple of ways.

"For RJ it was kind of a natural attraction for the boys," Eselu said. "I think his delivery, his zip on the ball and his performance on the field is one thing, but even off the field I think that the boys gravitate toward him. … They're all vying for his passes now and having a competition between each other, who owes who lunch, so it's fun because what I see is the boys not just accepted him, but felt like he could definitely bring them through games."

Javar was a perfect 7-for-7 passing on Moanalua first drive of the second half. He capped the 11-play, 80-yard drive with a 1-yard TD pass to Dacyres Domingo to give his team a 16-7 lead. In all, Javar accounted for 19 first downs by pass.

The Raiders clung to a 20-18 lead for much of the fourth quarter until Na Menehune drove to the Iolani 10-yard line to set-up a game-winning 27-yard field goal by Griffin Motas as time expired.

It was Moanalua's first win over Iolani and the first time the teams met since the quarterfinals of the 2016 Division I state tournament.

"When I played them, we couldn't beat ‘em, finally when I became head coach here, we couldn't beat ‘em, so this was huge, especially being at our house," Eselu said.

Na Menehune (1-0) appear at No. 14 in this week's ScoringLive/Hawaiian Electric Power Rankings. They open up league play Friday when they visit Kailua in an Oahu Interscholastic Association game at Alex Kane Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for approximately 7:30 p.m.

ScoringLive reporter Brandon Ching contributed to this report.


FOOTBALL
Cy Acohido, Leilehua — Had one sack and a forced fumble in a win over Kailua

Teancum Aiwohi, Kamehameha-Maui — Caught a touchdown pass and also scored on a 38-yard punt return in a win over Molokai

Chase Akana, Roosevelt — Caught six passes for 138 yards and a touchdown in a win over McKinley

Apu Alfiche, Kamehameha-Hawaii — Rushed for 126 yards and two touchdowns on in a win over Waiakea

Naomas Asuega-Fualaau, Kaimuki — Rushed for 128 yards with a touchdown on 16 carries and recovered a fumble in a win over PAC-5

Titus Atimalala, Campbell — Caught five passes for 178 yards and two touchdowns in a loss to Mililani

Noa Bailey, Kapolei — Threw for 245 yards and four touchdowns on 20-of-28 passing without an interception in a win over Waianae

Nathaniel Balangitao, Kalani — Rushed for 57 yards and two touchdowns on 20 carries in a win over Kalaheo

Laitin Bradley, PAC-5 — Recovered a fumble in the end zone for a touchdown in a loss to Kaimuki

Savion Brown, Leilehua — Had one sack and forced a fumble in a win over Kailua

Josh Canosa, Aiea — Caught four passes for 165 yards and a touchdown in a win over Radford

Kawika Clemente, Kamehameha — Rushed for 141 yards and two touchdowns on 14 carries in a loss to Kahuku

Kevin Davis, Roosevelt — Scored on a 3-yard fumble return in a win over McKinley

Kainoa Doctor, Kamehameha — Had one tackle, forced a fumble and recovered a fumble in a loss to Kahuku

Ethan Domen, Kaiser — Scored on a 41-yard interception return in a win over Pearl City

Kaipo Enos-Ho, Campbell — Made 9/12 tackles, forced a fumble and recovered a fumble in a loss to Mililani

Alfred Failauga, Waipahu — Rushed for 338 yards and five touchdowns on 39 carries in a win over Castle

Kanoa Gibson, Mililani — Caught 10 passes for 144 yards in a win over Campbell

Brock Hedani, Iolani — Rushed for 97 yards and two touchdowns on 13 carries in a loss to Moanalua

Wynden Hoohuli, Mililani — Intercepted two passes in a win over Campbell

Muelu Iosefa, Mililani — Had 4 1/2 tackles, including one for a loss, forced a fumble and recovered a fumble in a win over Campbell

Sean Ivy, Pearl City — Had one sack, forced a fumble and recovered a fumble in a loss to Kaiser

Mana Kahoopii, Castle — Threw for 186 yards and three touchdowns on 10-of-13 passing in a loss to Waipahu

Kaulana Kaluna, Kaimuki — Made 13 tackles, including two sacks, and forced a fumble in a win over PAC-5

Rudy Kealohi, Moanalua — Caught 14 passes for 147 yards in a win over Iolani

Rayden Kiaaina-Caires, Punahou — Caught four passes for 106 yards and a touchdown in a win over Farrington

Puatasi Komiti, Kaimuki — Had five tackles, including two sacks, in a win over PAC-5

Chaysen Lopez, Aiea — Had 4 1/2 tackles, including one for a loss, forced a fumble and recovered a fumble in a win over Radford

Micah Mahiai, Kamehameha-Hawaii — Rushed for two touchdowns in a win over Waiakea

Jayden Maiava, Kaimuki — Threw for 200 yards and three touchdown passes on 15-of-29 passing with one interception and rushed for another score in a win over PAC-5

Peter Manuma, Campbell — Had six tackles and two sacks in a loss to Mililani

Cody Marques, Waipahu — Threw for 217 yards and two touchdowns on 9-of-15 passing without an interception in a win over Castle

Kala Matthews, Castle — Caught six passes for 122 yards and a touchdown in a loss to Waipahu

Javon Miller, Aiea — Rushed for 130 yards and two touchdowns on 16 carries in a win over Radford

Koby Moananu, Kaimuki — Caught six passes for 89 yards with two touchdown and added three tackles and an interception on defense in a win over PAC-5

Tamatoa Mokiao-Atimalala, Campbell — Scored on a 61-yard interception return in a loss to Mililani

Shayden Molina, Iolani — Had two sacks and recovered a fumble in a loss to Moanalua

Griffin Motas, Moanalua — Converted two field goals, including a game-winning 27-yard kick as time expired in a win over Iolani

Kaulana Navares, Mililani — Kicked field goals of 44, 30 and 36 yards and made all three PAT attempts in a win over Campbell

Damon Nelson, Radford — Scored on a 95-yard kickoff return in a loss to Aiea

Sky Ogata, Roosevelt — Threw for 400 yards and three touchdowns on 27-of-35 passing with one interception in a win over McKinley

Masi Pasi, Kahuku — Intercepted two passes in a win over Kamehameha

Michael Perry, Kamehameha-Hawaii — Threw for 148 yards and three touchdown passes on 16-of-22 passing in a win over Waiakea

Alvin Quisquirin-Sabagala, Waianae — Rushed for 115 yards and a touchdown on 15 carries in a loss to Kapolei

Malosi Sam, Mililani — Rushed for 257 yards and three touchdowns on 42 carries in a win over Campbell

Jacob Saole-Sue, Kapolei — Had 11 tackles, including four for losses, and two sacks in a win over Waianae

Andrew Saole, Waipahu — Had two sacks in a win over Castle

Solofa Setu, Waipahu — Caught four passes for 127 yards and two touchdowns in a win over Castle

Dylan Soberano, Aiea — Intercepted two passes, recorded three tackles and recovered a fumble in a win over Aiea

De'Zhaun Stribling, Kapolei — Caught 13 passes for 134 yards and two touchdowns in a win over Waianae

Jesse Stroede, Kaiser — Intercepted two passes in a win over Pearl City

Menise Sunia-Pase, Radford — Had four tackles, including three for losses and two sacks in a loss to Aiea

Iosefa Tapeni, Kapolei — Had three tackles, including two sacks in a win over Waianae

Anthony Tolentino, Kamehameha-Maui — Threw for 224 yards and three touchdowns on 17-of-25 passing without an interception and ran in another score in a win over Molokai

Cayd Tollefson-Oili, Kamehameha — Had two tackles, forced a fumble and recovered a fumble in a loss to Kahuku

Arnel Valdez, Waianae — Had eight tackles, including five for losses, and two sacks in a loss to Kapolei

Aaron Velasco, McKinley — Scored on an 85-yard kickoff return in a loss to Roosevelt

Jashawn Wakefield, Leilehua — Had three tackles for losses, including two sacks, in a win over Kailua

Bula White, Kapolei — Caught four passes for 110 yards and two touchdowns in a win over Waianae

Austin Wilson, Kamehameha-Hawaii — Caught two touchdown passes in a win over Waiakea

Mana Young-Tavai, Aiea — Scored on a 44-yard interception return in a win over Radford



Reach Kalani Takase at [email protected].


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