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Heading to CA to play some football

Makavelli and Manaia Novera, of Avaio, with their proud parents Suluape Riccy Lamositele and Lilia Fonoimoana. The Novera boys have been recognized as one of the Top 56 players in the nation, in the 7- 8 grade level, hence their selection to play in the upcoming Freedom All American Game set to be held in California, July 5-8.   [photo: courtesy]

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — Brothers Manaia and Makavelli Novera have been selected to play in the Freedom All American Game, powered by National Sports Report (NSR), set to be held July 5-8 at Oceanview High School in Huntington Beach, CA

The boys have certainly come a long way and their parents Suluape Riccy Lamositele and Lilia Fonoimoana are determined to see that their only children succeed both on and off the field.

Throughout their young lives, Manaia and Makavelli relocated more than once. They spent several years in American Samoa, at $2 Dollar Beach in Avaio village with their grandparents Riccy and Kelesia but the bulk of their upbringing was in Hawai’i though, where they were part of the Laie Park Red Raiders family.

Two years ago, Riccy and Lia made the ultimate sacrifice of leaving behind island life for the hot, humid air of Sin City, so their boys can play for Bishop Gorman, a sought after Catholic school with a distinguished football program and academic curriculum.

Slowly but surely, the decision is paying off. Both Makavelli and Manaia have been selected to play in the Freedom All American Game, among other football camps, clinics, and games they have been part of over the past year.

Founder and Chief Executive Officer of the Freedom All American Game, Jayson Barron, in response to Samoa News inquiries, said that as of yesterday, they received just over 1,600 nominations from across the country; but they are only accepting the Top 56 players per grade level.

The event is open to players in grades 3-8.

Manaia, a middle linebacker, will be playing in the 7th grade division while older brother Makavelli, a quarterback, will be playing in the 8th grade bracket.

Other outstanding football players from Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, New York, Hawaii, Utah, Nevada, Arizona, Kentucky, Washington, Indiana and a few more will join the two.

"Very excited for this game," wrote Barron in a message to Samoa News yesterday.

Selection of players for the upcoming game included a review of not only the nominations, but also hours of film. Scouts and a board of directors made the final decision.

"Here at Freedom All American Game, we take pride in setting the new standard for All American Games," reads the flyer announcing the event.

Congratulations to the Novera boys.

Ia manuia le taumafaiga.