Warriors and the Vikings dominate week 8
This past weekend hosted only two matches for Week No. 8 of ASHSAA Football. The games were only at the Junior Varsity level, and led to Leone High School, undefeated from the beginning of the season, being no longer undefeated, after the Vikings punished them last Saturday with a time consuming attack that Leone never expected; and on Thursday, the Warriors dominated the Crusaders with a blow out game, which had the Mercy Rule in affect.
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Warriors vs. Crusaders
Frank Mauigoa, the Freshmen Quarterback for the Warriors has been putting out outstanding performances from the beginning of the season, and Thursday’s delivery was no different.
He scored the first touchdown of the game against the Crusaders with 7:44 remaining in the first quarter, with a quarterback keep into the end zone on a third down situation from the Crusaders 3-yard line.
In the same quarter, 7 seconds remaining, and Tafuna found their way back to Marist’s red zone, for a second down conversion on the Crusaders 2-yard line. A hand off to the middle featured Travis Seui in the end zone, celebrating his first touchdown of the game. Their two point conversion was a pass play out to Lyle Siu that had the Warriors on top of the Crusaders 14 - 0.
9:32 in the second quarter, and the Warriors struck early taking advantage of Marist’s mistakes inside their own territory. A third down possession of the Warriors on the Crusaders 3- yard line, another inside hand off to Seui to the middle, sent six more points to the scoreboard for Tafuna. Their two point attempt out to Ray Siaulaiga, had Tafuna locked on top 22 - 0 to head into half time.
The second half still favored the Warriors, as Marist continued to try and solve the mystery of how to reach the end zone, and the Mercy Rule goes in to affect.
In the meantime, Tafuna anchored their way to Marist’s 20-yard line, where Mauigoa ran a second down conversion pass play out to Siu for Siu’s second end zone entrance and his first TD of the day that extended Tafuna’s lead 28 - 0.
5:29 in the 3rd quarter, Tafuna again runs a threatening third down possession from Marist’s 20-yard line — again. Mauigoa patiently looking for an open receiver, turned to hook up with Siu for another TD conversion. Siaulaiga inside the end zone for the two point attempt, Tafuna dominated 36 - 0.
9:15 in the fourth quarter, first down of Tafuna of the Crusaders 2-yard line, a counter hand off to Tupufia Shalhout extended the Warriors lead 44 - 0 after the two point conversion by Tei.
Closing minutes of the ball game, and Tafuna continues with their dominating pace down field. Tafuna plays a second down situation from their own 35-yard line, the first threatening possession of Tafuna from their own territory, a pitch play from Mauigoa out to Siaulaiga, and Siaulaiga took it all the way to the house for a 75-yard touchdown reception that balled out the Warriors on top 50 - 0.
Victory ultimately belonged to the Warriors, but the Crusaders did have the last word.
As the Crusaders side of the field started to leave their seats and were heading down from the grandstand, fans and supporters saw a surprising come back from their Crusaders team that never crossed their minds.
27 seconds remaining in the ball game and Marist had possession of the ball that everyone determined to be another turnover. But turnover wasn’t in Gabriel Meredith’s mind when he aired out the ball to Paul Collins on a fourth down situation from the Warriors 14-yard line, scoring Marist’s first and only touchdown of the game.
SAMOA NEWS JV PLAYER OF THE GAME: Frank Mauigoa
Samoa News selected for the second time, Tafuna High School’s Freshman quarterback, Frank Mauigoa to be the SN Player of the Game, after leading the Warriors over the Crusaders with a 50 - 6 victory. Mauigoa recorded 1 TD, 4 passing end zone conversion, he averaged 6 out of 10 completed passes per series, and 4 end zone hand offs.
Saturday Football Breakfast
Leone 16 - Fagaitua 36
Junior Varsity Division
Leone’s Folasa Vili is the most talked about JV player that has literally dominated the league with touchdown conversions and rushing yardage this year. Vili, the leader of the Lions team assured Leone’s lead after he put in the first six points of the game with an 89-yard touchdown reception. Their two point conversion hand off to Quinn Solo Chanel was good enough to have the Lions leading 8 - 0.
Still in the first quarter, Tavai Tuitasi intercepted what could have been a Fagaitua TD pass from Gus Napoleone, as Tuitasi brought that one back to bring in “Frost” and the Lions offense. But throughout the remaining time of the first half, Head Coach Sua’ese Pooch Ta’ase worked non-stop with his defense, on trying to figure out a way to stop Leone.
It was early in the third quarter, and still Pooch was adjusting.
The opening kick off of the second half ends up in the hands of “Frost” who returned it and was finally caught and forced out of bounds at the Vikings 3-yard line by Aleipata Fereti. Leone’s first down possession there and Eddie Tagaleo’o sent Quinn Solo Chanel up the middle with his first touchdown of the game extending the Lion’s lead to 16 - 0 after a good two point conversion by Silimusa Solomona.
And then it all came together for the Vikings — with luck and beautiful plays, they showed why they are considered one of the premier teams of the ASHSAA football league.
It begins with Leone sending the kick off over to the Vikings, right after the LHS touchdown, and Fagaitua’s Sa’ilele returned it in a 70-yard touchdown. Their two point conversion was good in the hands of Tuasivi Makalio.
5:11 in the third, Head Coach Ta’ase was working on a nuclear strategy with his offensive linemen.
Fagaitua having possession of the ball from their own 28-yard line, managed to ground and pound the ball straight up the middle, and with the help of the Vikings O-Line, they were able to muscle their ‘non stop no huddle counter attacks’ to the Lions 4-yard line, where Leone expected another mid field attack by the Vikings, but instead saw Napoleone rolling out to chase the corner of the goal line to record his first touchdown of the game, tying it up 16 - 16 after the good two point conversion by Tuasivi.
It’s now 2:12 remaining in the same quarter of the half, and the Vikings make it to the Lions 15-yard line with the help of their offensive linemen, pounding their gaps wide open for their running backs ground attack, and they were still running the clock down. Napoleone handed off the ball to Makalio who fumbled the ball right on the Lions 1-yard line, but it was luckily picked up immediately by Lafaele Simanu who was right behind him for Simanu’s first touchdown of the game to take the Vikings to their first lead against the Lions this season 16 - 22.
During the last quarter of the game 7:15 remaining in the ball game, the Lions fans expected “Frost” to be the hero of this game for Leone. But Folasa was in no condition to take on the Vikings with Fagaitua offensive line continuously pounding Vili who also played middle linebacker on defense, and not once was able to stop the Vikings counter attacks. From the Lions 3 yard line, Napoleone hands the ball out to Mose Salatielu who scored the closing touchdown of the game, as the Vikings went back to the Eastern Side very proud to be able to bring down the “was” No.1 team in the league.
Now that the the Lions have lost for the first time this season in the JV Division, Leone, Tafuna, and Fagaitua are all tied up at first place, with one loss each to their record.
SAMOA NEWS JV PLAYER OF THE GAME: Fagaitua’s O-Line
Samoa News selected Fagaitua High School’s starting Offensive Linemen, as they were the ones who continuously worked hard to create running gaps for their counter ground attacks, and they came through strong in the second half to pull the Vikings through to defeat Leone for the first time this season.