News Article


A last-second field goal by sophomore kicker Nakoa Ige sealed the win for the Konawaena High School Wildcats in Saturday’s HHSAA Division I semifinal.

With the 27-24 win over the Aiea Na Alii at Julian R. Yates Field, Konawaena secured its spot in the Hawaii High School Athletic Association’s Division I Championship. The No. 2-seeded Wildcats will face No. 4-seeded Waipahu at 7 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 26, at Mililani High School on Oahu. Waipahu defeated Iolani School 35-10 on Saturday.

In Saturday’s game in Kealakekua, Aiea took the lead with a touchdown and a field goal in the first quarter. However, with just a minute left in the period, Konawaena recorded a touchdown on a 45-yard run by Kawelu Kaiawe.

In the second quarter, neither team put points on the board until Aiea’s Elijah Nahoopii-Makakona ran the ball in with 4:29 left. Just over a minute later, on a fourth down and three, quarterback Keoki Alani passed to Zedekiah Anahu-Ambrosio who ran 47 yards for the touchdown, bringing Konawaena to within in three at 17-14.

Konawaena then forced a turnover in the red zone when sacking Aiea quarterback Ezekiel Olie. The Wildcats were unable to convert a touchdown, instead settling for a 22-yard field goal by Ige, tying the score at 17-17 with 31 seconds left in the half.

Following half-time, Aiea’s Kaimana Lale-Sole recovered a blocked punt and ran it in for a touchdown to give the Na Alii a 24-17 lead.

Through the third and half of the fourth quarter, neither team. However, numerous flags were thrown with penalties enforced against both teams, including against an Aiea coach on the sideline.

However, an interception by Konawaena’s Austin Takaki with about 6 minutes left in the game got the momentum rolling for the Wildcats. After gaining possession of the ball, Alani threw a 4-yard touchdown to Anahu-Ambrosio to the game at 24-24 with 5:30 left in the fourth to tie the game.

After kicking the ball to Aiea, Konawaena regained possession of ball with 2:51 left after a fumble by Lale-Saole on the 41-yard line. The team managed to hold the ball and run down the clock, with Ige sending the ball through the uprights for the 27-24 win with just 1 second remaining on the clock.

In Division II semifinal play, Kauai’s Waimea High School defeated Honokaa 17-0, ending the Dragons season.