Determination is carrying the Waiakea boys soccer team a long way.
Timely goals from John Grover are helping, too.
The Warriors beat Kalaheo 2-1 in overtime on a goal by Grover in the quarterfinals of the HHSAA Division I state soccer tournament on Thursday on Oahu.
No. 3 seed and BIIF champion Waiakea (11-2-1) plays Mililani (12-2-1) in the semifinals at 5 p.m. Friday at the Waipio Peninsula Soccer Complex. The Trojans edged No. 2 seed Kapolei 1-0.
According to coach David Urakami, Waiakea is in the semifinals for the first time since finishing third in 1999.
Grover, who had a hat trick and golden goal against Hilo in BIIF final, scored in OT off a cross from Kai Biegler.
“It feels good but was just focused on winning and trying to get to the next game,” Grover said.
Waiakea’s first goal was by Biegler off a cross from Tevin Atwal.
“The boys dug deep. They are doing it for themselves, their team, their school and their families,” said Urakami, who noted the biggest difference between the team now and midseason is “determination and wanting to win.”
HPA 4, Waipahu 0: Daniel Vidal Gayoso had a hat trick and Benjamin Kubo scored for Ka Makani.
Zane Willman and Kawehi Cabuzel combined on the shut out for BIIF champion and second-seeded HPA (11-3), which will face league rival Kamehameha in a 1 p.m. semifinal Friday.
“The boys had a hard time finding their feet in the first half, but in the second half all the boys got on the same wavelength and worked as a solid unit out there,” HPA coach James Berry said. “Their work to help each other on and off the ball won us the game. A definite team effort today.”
Kamehameha 1, Pac-Five 0: Buddy Bettts scored on a penlty kick with with three minutes left as the Warriors won their third consecutive make-or-break game since losing in the BIIF semifinals.
“The key was constant pressure,” coach Kevin Waltjen said. “The team stayed focused and the defensive unit did well against Pac-5’s counterattack.”
During the regular season, the Warriors (11-4-1) beat HPA in Waimea 1-0.
Kapaa 3, Makua Lani 1: Ka’eleleokahaku Fernandez scored for the Lions at the 31-minute mark.
“They had good speed up top and finished their shots,” Makua Lani coach Teva Beatty said about the top seeded Wariors from Kauai. “Did well to press our mid. Defensively strong and organized.
“Our team worked hard and gave it everything. We had lots of opportunities. Just couldn’t get the ball in the back of the net. Not our day. Hats off to Kapaa.”
Nahoa Davis, Kellen O’Rourke, and Laa Gonsalves scored for the yhe top-seeded Warriors.