by Hannah Bartlett
The last league championship victory for Waialua was 61 years ago in 1955. For the team, the school, and the community, playing for an OIA title is a huge accomplishment. Junior Tevesi Toia says that he was mind-blown when he found out it was 61 years since the last championship and said, “We made History!” Going to the championships is a goal that every player has, and in 2016,that has been achieved.
Some players on the team say that it didn’t sink in that they were going to the championships until a few days after the game. Since Waialua is such
a small school, many people don’t know where it is – when things happen in Waialua, it doesn’t get a lot of attention because the community is small, so when something as big as a championship game happens; “It brings a lot of attention to the community and the school. Waialua doesn’t get a lot of recognition since it’s not as big as the other schools on the island; so now that we’re going to the championship, everyone is paying attention to us,” says senior defensive tackle Gabriel Maples. The team also said going to the championship is for the coaches because they have never been to a championship game and the victories mean just as much to them as to the players.
Everyone is excited for the game, however, with all the excitement comes the nerves. The stadium is a much bigger audience then so Waialua has to make sure they’re giving their all. “It’s a huge stadium, there’s way more people watching us play this game than any other game we’ve played.” said junior Dayton Supebidia. The teammates keep an eye out for each other and make sure that everyone is doing their best and is focused for the game this Friday – and not surprisingly, they became a family.
Every teammate watches out for one another and supports each other through it all. Dayton says that the team trains
themselves mentally by watching videos of the other teams play so they know their strengths and weaknesses. For many of the team members, this is their last year at Waialua – and they want to graduate from Waialua saying that we won the championship. As senior Gabriel Maples said, “As a senior, I want to make my last year, my best year!” By winning the championship game, every senior on the team can say they left with a bang and hold their heads high. Their families are involved and proud, to support the team as they make their journey to the championship . Knowing that they have the support of an entire community, the team’s expectations for the game are high to finally end a 61 year wait.