Hawaii youth tackle football team prepares for West Coast Preseason Invitational

A group of 11 and under Hawaii boys are headed to Seattle for the West Coast Preseason Invitational.
Published: Jul. 3, 2022 at 5:50 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - A group of 11 and under Hawaii boys are headed to Seattle for the West Coast Preseason Invitational.

The Metro Tigers are a Honolulu based tackle football team and one of the first Hawaii teams to receive an invitation to the tournament.

With teams hailing from Las Vegas, El Paso, and San Diego, the invite only tournament provides these local athletes a platform on the mainland.

“This is a first in a long time for a Hawaii program to get an invitation on a national stage I know All Blacks Crusaders coach Frank Lacaden has done it to get an invitation to go to the U.S. mainland and I believe this is one of the first ones in quite some time,” Metro Tigers coach Mark Veneri told Hawaii News Now.

Playing in tournaments on the mainland provides many Hawaii athletes with the one thing they need – exposure.

“It says a lot about the competition, says a lot about the athletes that we have here in the islands for me my main focus is to get these kids exposure I tell everybody it’s not about the wins and the losses, it’s about getting these kids that opportunity to play at the next level,” said Veneri.

The big game awaits for the Tigers but before the touchdown celebrations begin, the players have more training to do.

“Very special because a lot of people like teams don’t get to have this privilege so it’s really a privilege to go up there and show who we are,” said Metro Tigers wide receiver and defensive back, Kanoa Kameehonua.

“It takes pride and it’s like a blessing,” said offensive and defensive linemen, Thor Palimo’no.

“It’s like an honor to go up there and represent Oahu,” said running back and linebacker, Titan Teo.

The West Coast Preseason Invitational starts on August 5 in Seattle, Washington.

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