OIA Football: Kahuku vs. Moanalua

OIA Football: Kahuku vs. Moanalua


For visiting Kahuku, it was a tune-up for things to come. For Moanalua, it was a litmus test against the state’s No. 1 team.

The result was hardly a surprise, with the defending Open state champion Red Raiders upending Na Menehune 60-7 on Friday night.

A long line of lock-down defensive efforts by the Red Raiders, gave the North Shore boys great field position all night. With the short field, quarterback Waika Crawford took advantage with five TD passes, including three to Kache Kaio.

“That defense is special,” said Na Menehune coach Vince Nihipali, who, when asked, ranked that Red Raiders’ unit a notch higher than the 2015 state title team version.

Mana Carvalho (four tackles, interception), Stansyn Pula (in on two sacks), and Madden Soliai (four tackles) were at the forefront defensively for Kahuku. Carvalho also contributed offensively with an 11-yard receiving TD, and Soliai found the end zone from 43 yards out after taking a lateral from Carvalho after the latter’s pick.

Nihipali’s Na Menehune (2-5-1, 1-4) wrap up their season next Friday at Waianae (2-5, 1-4) in a battle for fifth place.

“That would put us just outside of the (four-team) playoffs,” Nihipali said. “We want to go from being a D-I team to just missing the playoffs our first year in the Open. If we had been able to hold on after taking a 17-0 lead against Kapolei (a 42-17 loss on Sept. 17), this game would be for a playoff spot.”

Defensively for Moanalua, Ruben Chavez had a solid night with four tackles, including a sack.

“When the lights come on, Ruben gets better,” Nihipali said. “He has the intelligence and drive to make it, so we hope he can hook up with somebody (a D-I FBS college).”

Joshua Acidera made six tackles for Moanalua, and Keenan Ulu caught three passes for 55 yards.

Now, when Kahuku (7-2, 5-0) plays at home against Mililani (5-2), 4-0) next Saturday, the OIA Open regular-season title will be on the line. After that, in November, the Red Raiders and Trojans will compete at states.

“Mililani, it’s always us and them,” Crawford said. “I know they’re doing whatever they can to prepare for us. They have a lot of athletes and we have a lot of athletes. Both teams are going to play fast and it’s going to be a big game. We’ve just got to stick to the game plan.”

OIA Football: Leilehua vs. Mililani

OIA Football: Leilehua vs. Mililani


The Trojans opened the scoring early and never looked back, routing the Mules 49-14. It was a night of celebration for both schools as it was Homecoming for Leilehua and Senior Night for Mililani.

  1Q 2Q 3Q 4Q  FINAL
Mililani (5-2-0) 28 7 7 7 49
Leilehua (0-6-1) 0 7 0 7 14

Nanakuli Powerhouse Nathan Pele-Tukumoeatu Brings Positive Vibes

Nanakuli Powerhouse Nathan Pele-Tukumoeatu Brings Positive Vibes

Nanakuli Powerhouse Nathan Pele-Tukumoeatu Brings Positive Vibes

When last Friday’s OIA Division II first-place football game turned Nanakuli’s way in the second half, running back/tight end Nathan Pele-Tukumoeatu was a big reason why.

And by big, we’re talking really big. This Pele-Tukumoeatu kid, a Golden Hawks senior, is 6-foot-3 and 240 pounds. Used sparingly in the first two quarters, he proved to be incredibly tough to bring down on the drive that put Nanakuli ahead for good with 2:33 left in the third quarter of what became a 21-3 victory over Pearl City.

Playing high school football, however, was not really on Pele-Tukumoeatu’s radar until the offseason, when he started to work out in the sport for the first time since his U-12 youth football days in 2017.

“Nate showed up at our first team meeting,” Nanakuli coach Kili Watson told Hawaii Sports Radio Network on Thursday. “I had heard about him a little bit, and he’s been committed from the start — in the weight room and during summer workouts. I remember some of the players were asking if he could come out last year, but it was already in the middle of the season and a little too late. And, oh man, has he grown so much and improved tremendously.”

Pele-Tukumoeatu is just one of the Golden Hawks’ offensive threats. Running backs Christian Asinsin and Allen Mahoe III carry a big load, and receiver David Kalili (29 receptions, 482 yards, 7 TDs) is another force.

Those three running backs along with quarterback Hansen Salausa-Kaawa have combined for 1,074 yards rushing in six games.

And although Pele-Tukumoeatu is not a captain, he is a born leader, according to Watson.

“During huddle or practice breaks that we call out together, whenever Nate does it, he will say, ‘Lead on 3. … 1, 2, 3 lead!’ ” the coach said. “He has a real presence about him and it’s infectious. He brings positive energy to practice, and in every game he’s had some pivotal plays. What’s great about these three running backs is that they support whoever has the hot hand and they all do such a great job.”

Photo credit: Nikki Kalima

The Golden Hawks (5-1, 5-0) hold first place in OIA D-II, but a great start does not guarantee a great finish, especially with plenty of good teams chasing them.

“Our coaches tell us that no matter where we are or no matter who we are playing to always have that championship mind-set, and for us to look at every opponent as if they are champions,” Pele-Tukumoeatu said.

Along those same lines of Nanakuli’s overall mentality, Watson added, “A lot of our players will tell you today that they’re not concentrating on winning on Friday. First, they’ll say, they have to win today, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday before they start thinking about Friday.”

The Golden Hawks are looking for their first OIA D-II title since 2014, when Kili’s brother Keala was the head man. They meet a solid Kaimuki (3-3, 3-2) squad on Saturday at the Roosevelt High field.

Pele-Tukumoeatu’s leadership abilities are also evident at Alofa Tunoa, the Christian church his father Tavita started when the family moved back to Oahu after a temporary move to Washington state.

“It started at our house, where we were for a solid two months,” Nate said. “And all glory to God, we now have a place in Kunia and people are starting to come. It’s getting crowded.”

Football is always something Pele-Tukumoeatu — one of Tavita and mom Tina’s eight children — has loved to do.

“I get out of the house and free my mind when I’m on that field,” he added.

And, according to Watson, the senior running back has been more and more curious about what it takes to move on to the next level.

At a recent practice, former Pittsburgh Steelers star running back Chris Fuamatu-Maafala was an invited guest who gave some advice to the Golden Hawks.

“Nate asked a lot of great questions, trying to pick his brain,” Watson said.

The best technical advice Fuamatu-Maafala gave, according to Pele-Tukumoeatu, was for the big back to lower his pad level when running.

“He said I was a very strong runner and to lower my body,” the Nanakuli senior said. “I do believe I run a little too high. He said that I can become a dominant running back. I take those words as wise and coming from a man who has done it all. Whatever he said, I tried to take it all in. He also said that we gotta play with discipline and that it all starts with God and ends with God.”

Looking ahead, Pele-Tukumoeatu feels confident in not only Nanakuli’s offensive teammates, but also the boys on the other side of the ball.

“The defense, those guys are ready for anyone in this division,” he said. “They’ve most definitely upped their game.”

Photo credit: TakoEye Sports Photography

Photo credit: TakoEye Sports Photography

Ah You Family’s Legendary Lineage

Ah You Family’s Legendary Lineage


If you think about it long enough, it might make perfect sense for the Ah You football family on the North Shore to change their name to “And You.”

As in: Who plays football in your clan? … You and you and you and you is the answer.

The latest of the bunch to make his mark is doing it in high-flying fashion for the Kahuku Red Raiders this fall.

His name is Manulele Ah You, and the receiver and kick returner is one of the only players from the family’s legendary lineage who plays on offense.

On Sept. 3 in a back-and-forth showdown against Punahou, Ah You gave his Red Raiders a desperately needed spark by returning a kickoff 97 yards for a touchdown to make it a 13-13 game. That play stole some of the thunder from the Buff ’N Blue, who had just gone ahead 13-6, and it proved to be not only the turning point in the eventual 27-20 win but it also saved reigning state champion Kahuku from an unexpected bleak ending.

Amazingly, Ah You’s gallop was reminiscent of two moments from the past.

One is his uncle Tori Taulogo’s 62-yard punt return that led to the winning touchdown with 19 seconds left in Kahuku’s 27-26 victory over Saint Louis for the 2003 top-tier state championship.

“That is the sentiment we got from a lot of people,” Manulele’s dad, Kingsley Ah You, told Hawaii Sports Radio Network. “It was reminding them of his uncle’s punt return. To them, it had the same feeling.”

Kingsley, a proud father who works in the Kamehameha athletic department, was wearing Kahuku colors for the win over Punahou, a luxury that was not available to him earlier this season when he donned Kamehameha blue to watch the Red Raiders defeat the Warriors 49-0 in the season-opening game on Kahuku’s brand-new artificial turf field.

Another of Manulele’s serendipitous moments was recorded on video Aug. 15, 2014, and it is out there on social media now. In it, a younger Manulele Ah You, sprints during a workout down that same Kahuku (grass at the time) field to the end zone with his dad’s voice announcing, “At the 50, the 40, the 30, the 20, the 10, touchdown Manulele Ah You, whoo!”

Attached to the end of that clip from eight years ago is a newer clip of Ah You’s kickoff return TD, with Spectrum’s Felipe Ojastro’s voice staying with the pace, “From around the 3 … Ah You … Ah You! Gotta beat Agenhart Ellis. He cuts it back. Ah You! 97 yards, touchdown!”

Only a junior, Manulele Ah You received his first Division I, FBS college football offer from Hawaii a year ago, and there may be more of those offers on the way.

“He’s such a humble kid,” his dad said. “Many kids say, ‘I want to do this or that and voice their opinion on the field.’ He’s not made that way. But he is bred to be red. Gratefully, my parents taught us that using your God-given talents to get an education is the way to help our family be successful and to be of service.”

Big football plays by the Ah You family have been happening for a long, long time on the North Shore and elsewhere.

Basically, it starts with Junior Ah You, a star defensive end at Kahuku, in college and at the pro level in the CFL and USFL.

After that, there are almost too many football “And Yous” to keep track of, but we’re going to give it the best shot:

JUNIOR AH YOU, a much feared defensive end at Kahuku and Arizona State and then for the Montreal Alouettes, three USFL teams and on into the Canadian Football League Hall of Fame, Polynesian Football Hall of Fame, Hawaii Hall of Fame, Arizona State University Hall of Fame and Hula Bowl Hall of Fame.

• Sale Ah You (also known as Charles), Kahuku’s first 1,000-yard rusher, according to Kingsley Ah You

• Kingsley Ah You, a former Kahuku and BYU cornerback
• Harland Ah You, a former defensive lineman for Kahuku, Punahou, BYU and who won a Grey Cup with the Calgary Stampeders in 1998
• June-Boy Ah You (also known as Miki), a Kahuku defensive end
• Joshua Ah You, a former Kahuku and Mesa linebacker
• Quin Ah You, a former Kahuku and Dixie State defensive lineman
• Manny Crawford, (hanai son), a former Kahuku player

• Jason Ah You, currently the assistant athletic director for football academics at BYU
• Matthew Ah You, a former BYU linebacker now a linebackers coach at Weber State
• CJ Ah You, a former defensive end at BYU and Oklahoma who went on to play for the Buffalo Bills and Saint Louis Rams and went on to coach linebacker at Oklahoma, Vanderbilt, USC and now Texas Tech

• Manulele Ah You, a Kahuku wide receiver and kick returner
• Quayd Ah You, a former Kahuku running back

• Ted Ah You, played high school football at Middleton, Idaho
• Payton Ah You, played high school football at Middleton, Idaho
• Miki Ah You, played high school football at Middleton, Idaho

• Miki Ah You, a former Kahuku linebacker who went on to play at the University of Washington
• Zion Ah You, a former Kahuku defensive lineman
• Leonard Ah You, a Kahuku senior linebacker
• Noah Ah You, a Kahuku JV player

• Jayden Ah You, a linebacker at Weber State

• Waika Crawford, a Kahuku senior quarterback

TAMARA’S (Junior’s sister) SON:
• Kingsley Suamataia, a BYU offensive lineman

KELEISE’S (Junior’s sister) SONS:
• Tauati Taulogo, a former Kahuku defensive lineman
• Tori Taulogo, a former Kahuku and Utah State cornerback

ANE’S (Junior’s sister) GRANDSONS:
• JT Mapu, a former Kahuku and University of Tennessee defensive lineman
• Daniel Mapu, a former Kahuku defensive tackle
• EJ Reid, a former Kahuku and Utah State defensive lineman
• Eldon Tuiasosopo, a former Dixie State linebacker
• Isaiah Tuiasosopo, a former Austin Peay State offensive lineman

• Chaz Ah You, a linebacker and defensive back at BYU

IRENE’S (Sale’s daughter) SON:
• Gabe Summers, Sale’s grandson, a defensive lineman at BYU

Manulele Ah You and his father Kingsley Ah You. (Photo courtesy of Kingsley Ah You)

OIA Girls Volleyball: Leilehua vs. Aiea Recap

OIA Girls Volleyball: Leilehua vs. Aiea Recap


Leilehua is finding its groove in OIA girls volleyball.

The Mules went on the road and won their fourth straight match, sweeping Aiea 25-15, 26-24, 25-19 on Tuesday night.

Now 5-1 in the OIA West, Leilehua and junior setter Sharla Domingo spread the wealth around on the attack against Na Alii, who were missing a handful of players due to COVID-19 precautions.

At the forefront were sophomore middle Priscilla Machuca with seven kills and three blocks, senior Hannah Feleti with seven kills and an ace, and junior Anniversary Filisi with six kills.

For coach Jerry Keola, the Mules didn’t really get rolling until the third set. That’s when three of his veteran players, who didn’t see action in the first two sets, came in to make their mark.

“We started a younger, more experienced lineup,” Keola told Hawaii Sports Radio Network. “For them, it was about getting past the nerves because they’re not usually on the court all the time.”

In that third set, Filisi, who had been playing middle, moved to the outside and junior Sela Atualevao entered the game and immediately made her presence felt at the net.

“That’s what opened it up for us,” said Keola, who watched his team barely get by in the second set.

Atualevao put down two kills in that clinching set.

With five kills, sophomore Zoe Shinall was another player who had a big night for Leilehua.

“I feel this team struggled in the beginning of the season, but are starting to find each other, trust each other,” Keola said. “And the younger players are beginning to understand that you are going to make mistakes and they’re remembering that’s it’s important to go out there and have fun.”

Aiea senior Ana Liiliii had a match-high 10 kills and added two aces. Fellow senior Sayde Souza contributed with two aces and a kill, and junior Falikipaame Taufa finished with three kills.

In the first set, the Mules led 12-10 and finished it out with a 13-5 run.

After 13 ties in the second set, Filisi put down the winner.

A late rally by Na Alii that included two Liilii kills got Na Alii to within five at 24-19 in the third set before Feleti’s kill ended the match for Leilehua.

“Filisi played a big role, keeping us in the game with her hitting and playing smart on the court, looking for and finding pockets (to hit),” Keola said. “And Machuca had some big blocks.”

The Mules are tied for third place in the OIA West with Waianae and trail only Kapolei and Mililani, both 5-0. They host Waipahu (1-4) on Thursday.

Aiea (0-5) has a home match against Waianae on Thursday.