Hilo holds off Waiakea in playoff tuneup
Leave it to the Hilo boys soccer team to always make things interesting.
The Vikings’ final match of the regular season played out like many of its predecessors: nothing came all that easy.
Senior Keola Miller and sophomore Rayce Takayesu each scored twice Thursday as Hilo held on for 5-3 victory against Waiakea in a Big Island Interscholastic Federation match at Hilo Bayfront.
Senior Justin Shiigi also scored for the Vikings (7-4-2), who jumped out to a four-goal lead than withstood a charge by the Warriors (3-10) while playing a man down because of a red card,
“Kind of sketchy at the end, but we got to let the boys have fun,” said first-year coach Buddy Betts, who let his seniors have their day in the first half and at the end of the match, even as the match tightened
Junior Hajime Hayano converted twice on penalty kicks for Waiakea. Tyler Kerr capped the scoring with about 10 minutes remaining.
With the loss, the Warriors are relegated to the fourth seed and will take a trip to face top-seeded Kealakehe (12-0-1) at 3 p.m. Wednesday in the BIIF Division I semifinals. At the same time, Hilo takes on Keaau (3-8-2) in the other semifinal at Hilo Bayfront.
Senior Dane Miyata garnered an assist for Hilo, which needed a victory on Senior Day to head to the postseason on a high note. The Vikings entered the match winless in five of their past six matches.
Still, Betts said Hilo’s slate has been wiped clean — the real season is about to begin.
“Looking forward to being healthy, that’s the main thing,” he said. “I’d rather go (7-4-2) and win in the BIIF championship, then go (13-0) and lose in the final game.
“I told the boys: never give, keep trying and at the end of the day we might pull through.”
Kamehameha 7, Hawaii Academy of Arts & Science: Kawika Finley, Ikaika Villanueva and Logan Uyetake each scored twice as the Warriors got the win they needed at home to surpass Parker and secure the final berth in the six-team Division II BIIF playoffs.
On Tuesday at 3 p.m. in the first round, Kamehameha (4-6-3) will face the loser of today’s match between Honokaa and Christian Liberty. Pono Brown also scored for Kamehameha.
The home team did not identify the goal-scorer for Na Naia, which ended their season 0-13.
Kealakehe 0, Konawaena 0: The defending Division I champion Waveriders, who have already earned an automatic berth in the Hawaii High School Athletic Association tournament, ended their regular season 12-0-1 after their draw at Julian Yates Field.
Konawaena (8-3-2), the No. 4 seed in the BIIF Division II playoffs, will host Makua Lani (7-4-2) at 3 p.m. Tuesday in a first-round match.
The Waveriders’ Greyson Moore and the Wildcats’ Coran Yamamoto earned shutouts in goal.
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