HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The regular season is in the books and kickoff for the 2018 First Hawaiian Bank State Football Championships is set for this Friday.
Elsewhere on the same night, Maui will travel to Hilo for the second-straight year looking to take down the Vikings, the defending DI champions.
Maui may have lost to Hilo last season, but head coach James Kammerer feels that this team has learned from its mistakes and is more prepared to play on the big stage this season.
“Offensively, we’re going to have to move the ball. Last year, we ran up against their defense and they were aggressive. They shut us down,” Kammerer said. “And this year, we’re preparing our offense (for) what they bring us at us to see if we can run the ball, throw the ball, we've been implementing our offense to spread it wide and get the ball out to our playmakers tomake plays.”
While Kammerer and his team are looking to the past for answers, Hilo head coach Kaeo Drummondo is taking the opposite approach and instead having his players forget about last year’s title run altogether.
“With this group, we told them from Day 1 is you guys gotta create your own character, create you guys are this year, the 2018 team. We cannot dwell on what it was last year. You guys got to be hungry for this year, go out and create your own journey.”
Maui will take on Hilo this Friday at Keaau High School. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.
Later in the evening back on Oahu, Waipahu will host Iolani on Friday at 7:30 p.m. and will be looking for the upset over the Raiders.
“I think we’re really kinda coming together, playing our best football right now, really just kind of on the rise,” said Waipahu head coach Bryson Carvalho.
Iolani head coach Wendell Look was not available for comment.
On Saturday, Roosevelt will play host to PAC-5 at 6:30 p.m. while Kaimuki travels to the Big Island to take on Kamehameha-Hawaii.
After losing to Roosevelt in the OIA DII title game, Kaimuki comes into this weekend with a chip on its shoulder after its undefeated season was taken from them by the Rough Riders.
“In every adversity and every challenge we have, even in our own personal lives, there’s always something good to take from it. This, for us, we were very fortunate that we have two games to be able to make it to states,” said Kaimuki head coach It sucks to feel a loss in a big game like that, but at the same time it’s a blessing to know that we have a shot at a bigger title.”
Kamehameha-Hawaii head coach Dan Lyon told Hawaii News Now that having the home field advantage in this game will be crucial to the team’s success on Saturday, but knows that his team will have to perform to its potential to defeat the Bulldogs.
“It’s been a few years since we’ve been back here and I think they’re really excited, ready to go and really looking for a challenge with Kaimuki. I think it’s kind of opposing forces kind of thing: We got some speed, they got some size. They’re ready, watching a lot of film, studying; I think they’re ready for Saturday to come."
Friday, Nov. 9
Hilo vs. Maui at Keaau - 7 p.m.
Iolani at Waipahu - 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 10
PAC-5 at Roosevelt - 6:30 p.m.
Kaimuki at KS-Hawaii - 7 p.m.