Mililani And Waialua Hope To Make Noise In OIA Tourney
At long last, the “second season” has arrived for both the Mililani and Waialua girls soccer teams. As the Division I Trojans and the Bulldogs (Division II) compete in their respective OIA Tournaments this week, State Tournaments berths for both will also be on the line. Central Oahu Islander takes a look at Mililani and Waialua’s post-season prospects.
Record: 9-0-1 in the OIA West – first place
Wins: Over Leilehua (6-0) Dec. 5; Waianae (2-0) Dec. 11; Nanakuli (4-1) Dec. 16; Radford (7-0) Dec. 19; Waialua (12-0) Dec. 23; Waipahu (3-0) Dec. 30; Kapolei (1-0) Jan. 6; Campbell (3-0) Jan. 9; Pearl City (2-1) Jan. 20.
Ties: With Aiea (1-all) Dec. 16
Trojans at a Glance: Stellar defensive play has once again paved the way for the Trojans, who shut out eight of their 10 regular-season opponents and yielded only three goals in all.
On the offensive side, Mililani has also come through in a big away, led by Tia Furuta, whose 17 goals led the state heading into last weekend. Teammate Kailana Kaeo also has had a big impact for the Trojans, with seven goals to date.
A 2-1 win over Pearl City in their regular-season finale Jan. 20 was the Trojans’ best outing, and should give them some momentum for this week’s OIA Red Conference Tournament.
As the top seed out of the West, Mililani had a first-round bye when tournament play opened Monday. The Trojans were to meet either Castle or Kapolei in a quarterfinal Tuesday at Mililani. The semifinals and championship game will be played Thursday and Saturday, respectively, at Castle High School.
The Trojans and coach Ray Akiona are seeking their fifth OIA Division I Title in the last seven years.
The top six finishers at this week’s OIA Tournament will earn the league’s berths in the Division I State Soccer Tournament next month.
Record: 1-6-2 overall in the OIA West
Key Win: Over Leilehua (4-1) Jan. 16
Bulldogs at a Glance:
Will Waialua’s experience playing against the elite Division I teams Mililani, Kapolei and Pearl City pay off now that the Bulldogs will be grouped solely with their fellow DII foes for the post-season?
The Bulldogs, who are seeded third out of the West for this week’s OIA White Tournament, will meet McKinley Wednesday in a first-round game at 7 p.m. at Kaiser High School.
A win would not only lift the Bulldogs into Thursday’s semifinals, but will guarantee Waialua one of the league’s four berths for next month’s Division II State Soccer Tournament.
The OIA White Championship Game is set for 5 p.m. Saturday (at Castle High School) and will be televised by OC Sports.
For its part, Waialua will look to increase its scoring opportunities, having scored only nine goals in as many games during the regular season. The good news is that the Bulldogs tallied seven of those over the past four games.
McKinley finished its regular season 2-7-1 overall, with its wins coming in their first game (over Farrington Dec. 6) and last game (over Kaimuki Jan. 21). The Tigers’ tie came with Kalaheo.