The standards have changed at Kalani and the Falcons want to keep it that way.
Sean Silas rushed for three touchdowns and Kalani avoided an 0-3 start to the season with a 28-6 win over Kalaheo on Friday night at Kaiser.
Silas, who missed last week’s game with an injury after rushing for 159 yards in a season-opening loss to Pac-Five, carried 19 times for 89 yards.
The Falcons (1-2, 1-1), who have made the OIA D-II playoffs each of the past two seasons, ended a five-game losing streak dating back to last season.
"No matter if you’ve been or haven’t been, I think the goal for a team every season is to make the playoffs and get to the championship game," Kalani coach Greg Taguchi said. "I think over the years we try to stick to building toward getting better every day and letting those other things fall into place."
Tyson Tagami added a 15-yard touchdown reception for the Falcons, who have won four of the past five meetings against the Mustangs (0-3, 0-2).
Kalaheo dropped to 0-3 (0-2 D-II) for the first time since 2005 and was held to six points for the second time in three weeks.
Kalani senior Sione Vea was a big reason why, totaling five tackles for loss, three sacks and a pass breakup.
"We’ve been working hard focusing on our responsibilities to get better every day," Vea said.
Kalani scored a touchdown in each of the four quarters and was balanced on offense with 265 total yards. Sophomore quarterback Seth Tina finished 11-for-22 for 128 yards.
The Falcons forced a three-and-out on Kalaheo’s opening drive and took advantage of a bad punt, needing just three plays to find the end zone.
Silas took his first carry into the end zone for 6 yards and added a 2-yard scoring run just before the half.
He sealed Kalani’s win with a 4-yard run midway through the fourth quarter for the final margin.
"Overall as a team we’re working pretty good and our (offensive) line is starting to pick it up," Silas said. "Our defense is doing a helluva job. I’ve got to give them credit."
The teams traded interceptions on consecutive possessions and were at a standstill until late in the first half.
The Mustangs moved the ball inside the Kalani 20, but had to punt after two holding penalties and sacks by Vea and junior Scout Benson.
A 36-yard punt return by David Dennis gave the Falcons good field position near midfield.
They marched 51 yards in 12 plays, with a 16-yard pass from quarterback Tina to Kai Reed setting up Silas’ 2-yard touchdown run.
Kalani sacked Kalaheo quarterback Mark Lehrner six times. Lehrner threw a 21-yard touchdown pass to Kamani Ah Yat for the Mustangs’ only score and finished 14-for-28 for 111 yards.
Waipahu 47, McKinley 2
Blaise De Asis passed for three touchdowns and ran for another as the Marauders beat the Tigers.
De Asis scored on a 13-yard run.
De Asis, who passed for 266 yards, completed a pair of scoring passes to Andrew Simanu and one to Kamakani Kahalewai.
Moanalua 40, Aiea 19
Michael Feliciano ran in four touchdowns in the first half as Na Menehune defeated Na Alii.
Moanalua’s Alakai Yuen completed 15 of 26 passes for 223 yards in the win.
Aiea’s Kobe Kato led the third-quarter rally with three passing touchdowns within six minutes. He completed 18 passes for 190 yards.