Konawaena scored five second-half goals — four in a five-minute span — en route to a 6-1 victory over Makua Lani on Thursday night at Julian R. Yates Field in Kealakekua.
Chris Higuchi and Michael Gusman each had a pair of goals for the Wildcats (7-2-2) and Gerardo Meneses scored a goal and had two assists in the Big Island Interscholastic Federation boys soccer match.
“We definitely came out stronger in the second half; played together,” said Higuchi. “We talked about how we needed to start building momentum at midfield and finishing our shots.”
Makua Lani (5-4-1) played a very quick and aggressive first half, and struck first when the speedy Kolby Martin blew past Konawaena defenders in the 24th minute to drill the ball into the net and give the Lions a 1-0 lead.
The Wildcats answered shortly thereafter, when Meneses connected on a wide-open shot from the right side to tie the game between what appeared to be evenly matched teams going into halftime.
But Konawaena took over early in the second half and didn’t look back.
In the 48th minute, Gerardo crossed the ball to Logan Takizawa, who was perfectly positioned near the left side of the goal, enabling him to tap the ball into the far right side of the net, past the diving goalkeeper.
In the 53rd minute, Gerardo crossed to Gusman in front of the goal to make it 3-1, and that’s when Konawaena really took control. Gusman scored again two minutes later on a pass from John Replogle. Higuchi scored his two goals within one-minute span, just two minutes later.
“I thought we were really close in the first half,” Konawaena assistant coach Phil Fukushima said. “We just needed to connect a few more passes offensively. … And then obviously we needed to tighten up a few things defensively, and not give up the counter attack.
“We asked them to take more shots at halftime, and they did. We did a good job in the first half of passing the ball around, we were just missing that last connection to get a shot.”
Christian Liberty 10, Parker 1
Louis Moylan scored four goals and Nakaiya Kerr netted his sixth hat trick of the season in Keaau as the Canefire increased their lead atop Division II.
Sequoya Kerr added two goals and Koa Caceres also found the back of the net for Christian Liberty, which is four points ahead of Honokaa and Kamehameha in the standings.
Kosuke Kume scored a goal for the Bulls (0-10-1). Parker’s loss gives Ka‘u the sixth and final playoff spot in the Division II playoffs.
The Trojans, whose regular season is done at 3-10, will visit the still-to-be-determined No. 3 seed in the first round Feb. 4.
HPA 9, Honokaa 1
Two goals apiece by Bri Vallente and Nanea Tavares in Waimea helped Ka Makani wrap up the outright regular-season championship in Division II and an automatic berth at the Hawaii High School Athletic Association tournament.
Gabbie Ewing, Erin Evans, Haley Dow, Teia Knoll and Emma Taylor also contributed goals for HPA (8-1-1). Seeking its fifth straight Division II title, top-seeded Ka Makani will host either East-Pac or Makua Lani on Tuesday in the BIIF semifinals.
Allie Shiraki registered a goal for the Dragons (4-6), who have lost four straight matches.
In Tuesday’s semifinal, Honokaa visits Kamehameha.
Pahoa 45, St. Joseph 41, OT
Tolby Saito scored 20 points — five in overtime — as the Daggers’ boys basketball team survived a scare to win at home.
Keinan Agonias added 12 points for Pahoa (2-5).
Three players scored in double figures for the Cardinals (0-6), who fought back in the fourth quarter to extend the game.
Cole DeSilva finished with 13 points, and Ben Uhlmann and Edgar Barclay scored 12 and 11, respectively.
By Stephens Media Hawaii sources