KAILUA-KONA — In a BIIF heavyweight battle of traditional powers, Hawaii Preparatory Academy (3-0) delivered the first blow against Kealakehe, coming away with a 2-0 victory at Waverider Stadium on Wednesday.
Tage Boyette and Jake Schneider scored first half goals to lead the way in the victory for Ka Makani.
It was the first meeting of the D-I squads, which have combined for 10 of the last 11 BIIF D-I titles.
The BIIF’s Division I belonged to Kealakehe (1-1-1) for the better part of the last decade, which included a near five-year winning streak and nine league titles. But when Hawaii Prep came on the scene last season — making the jump to D-I after a pair of D-II state titles — Ka Makani planted their flag. Hawaii Prep outscored the Waveriders 17-4 in three victories last season, including a dominant 10-1 win over Kealakehe in the league semifinals.
Hawaii Prep would go on to win the BIIF championship over Waiakea and a share of the D-I state title in a game against Baldwin that was called due to inclement weather.
Ka Makani have many of the same pieces from that history making squad, who made their presence known early against the ‘Riders.
Just two minutes in, Hawaii Prep found the back of the net when Schneider crossed a ball into the box and Boyette finished it.
Teddy Rubenstein had the best chance of the half for Kealakehe, but despite a loud cheer from the good-sized weekday crowd, he was declared offside.
Just seconds later, Schneider scored on the other end, stymieing any momentum that the Waveriders were conjuring up and giving Hawaii Prep a 2-0 advantage.
Kealakehe had its moments in the second half, but a sturdy Hawaii Prep back line — led by Colorado Mines commit Sihkea Jim — calmly turned the chances away.
The Waveriders nearly broke the shutout on a free kick with four seconds left, but the goal was waived off by the referee.
The teams will meet up again on Jan. 17, when much more will be known about the season with playoffs just around the corner.
Makua Lani 3, Kamehameha 1
The Lions pounced on the defending Division II BIIF and state champions, making an early statement as a top contender.
Makua Lani has a chance to make it three in a row against Division II foes on Saturday when Honokaa comes to town. The Lions knocked off Konawaena in its season opener last week, 2-1.
Stevan Perrino, Isaiah Easley and Kai Van Bergan scored for the Lions.
Kamanakai Paikuli scored the lone goal for the Warriors.
Kamehameha 6, Makua Lani 0
Raeshalyn Respicio notched a hat trick as the Warriors coasted to victory and a 3-0 record.
Kamehameha has outscored its opponents 32-0 in its wins this season.
Kaila Ambrosio, Jaden Dinkel and Chenoa Frederick were the other goal scorers for the Warriors.