Weekend Prospects For West Oahu Wins At Mid-season

Below is a look at this weekend’ s matchups of West Oahu football teams.

Waipahu at Aiea, 7 p.m. Friday The Marauders have moved the ball on every opponent and are among the most balanced units in the OIA Red West, averaging 148 yards on the ground and 139 yards per game through the air in four games. Its ultimate challenge could be against what may be the league’s best defense. Aiea defensive coordinator Mika Li‘ili‘i’s unit is giving up only 70 total yards a game and just seven on the ground. Aiea’s task will be to minimize self-inflicted miscues, as its offense has been plagued by turnovers.

Leilehua at Kapolei, 7 p.m. Friday This contest is akin to a statement game for Kapolei, which has returned to the OIA’s Red West following two injury-plagued seasons. With a loss to Waipahu in week one, it needs this win to stay in the mix. Kapolei rebounded nicely from that game to beat Waianae, so it’s all lined up for Mililani, Campbell and Aiea. Kapolei’s best attributes to date have been the ability to run the ball on offense (192 yards per game) and stop the run on defense.

Waianae at Campbell, 7 p.m. Friday This looks like a favorable matchup for Campbell on paper, but Waianae’s rough start was in large part because of its rash of turnovers, so the Sabers should be on “upset alert.” They control their own destiny with games ahead against Leilehua and Kapolei as well as last weekend against Mililani. Campbell’s ability to win the close ones bodes well for its post-season prospects. A balanced offense and stellar run defense (giving up only 74 yards per game on the ground) have carried them so far. Quarterback Justin Tago-Su’e, running back Paul-Andrew Rhoden and receiver Brannon Bantolina all are among the Red West’s best.

Pearl City vs. Anuenue at 6 p.m. Saturday at Waialua The defensive game plan when playing Anuenue is to slow down running back Kainalu Kaleo. Na Koa’s 5-9, 190-pound senior already has rushed for 775 yards a month into the season. Pearl City has been strong against the run so far, so its defense matches up well. Its best bet may be to control the game with its receivers and quarterbacks should put the team on top.