Relaxed and ready
WAIMEA — After Hawaii Prep thoroughly outplayed Kapaa in the first half Saturday, Warriors midfielder Cassie Wilson said Kapaa girls soccer coach Gwen Tamura instructed her team to “relax and go for everything.’’
Tamura received the increased aggression she wanted, and much of it came in the form of accurate long-range shooting in the second half.
Wilson buried a goal from 35 yards out, Chloe Fredericksen buried a 30-yarder, and Kapaa held on to beat HPA 2-1 in the semifinals of the Ka Makani Soccer Classic.
“We had to calm down and play how we practice,’’ Wilson said of Kauai Interscholastic Federation school Kapaa, which will play King Kekaulike at 9:45 a.m. today for the tournament title.
HPA will play Hilo at 8 a.m. in the third-place match.
In the first half, Ka Makani, displaying strong possession skills, virtually camped out on Kapaa’s half of the field and outshot the Warriors 16-2.
Tamura, wanting to get more “energy” on the field, inserted Taylor Ochoa and Jamie Brun, who helped create more scoring chances.
Eventually, the Warriors found the back of the net, with Wilson rifling a shot just below the crossbar and over the outstretched fingers of HPA goalkeeper Morgan Monahan in the 54th minute.
Nine minutes later, Fredericksen pumped a shot into the upper right corner of the net.
“I’m really proud of them,’’ Tamura said of the Warriors. “We have to polish more, but this team has a lot of heart.’’
Tamura said both Wilson and Fredericksen, who have displayed accurate shooting in the past, always have the green light to shoot from long range at any time.
“They earn their way to that,’’ said Tamura, who also credited Eryka Keoho for strong play at sweeper while filling in for the injured Mia Cabulisan.
Madeline Rausch also stood tall in goal, making four saves.
HPA got within 2-1 in the 75th minute when Nanea Tavares knocked in a rebound off a shot from Marlie Mandaguit.
Ka Makani coach Steve Perry said his team got away from the ball-control style of play that created several scoring chances in the first half.
“We got the ball in the air too much, and we had to keep it on the ground,’’ Perry said. “(Kapaa) played a little deeper (defensively), so they couldn’t give up the throughball or breakaway. We needed to look for other options.’’
For the game, HPA outshot Kapaa 22-7 for the match.
“We left too many (opportunities on the field) in the first half,’’ Perry said.
c Kealakehe 1, Hawaii Prep 0: Senior forward Kapono Berard’s goal off a pass from senior midfielder Avery Hardie-Jordan landed the Waveriders in today’s 11:30 a.m. championship match against two-time defending Hawaii High School Athletic Association Division II champion Honokaa.
Kealakehe coach Urs Leuenberger credited his team’s defense, which featured midfielder Keoni Yates starting at sweeper.
Yates filled in for Jason Kuwada, who missed the contest with an illness.
Freshman keeper Greyson Moore recorded the shutout in goal.
“We’re getting better every game, and we have four freshmen on the field,’’ Leuenberger said. “It’s very encouraging.’’