Homecoming games are usually held in the fall, but this winter two local boys get to come back home to celebrate their storied prep football careers.
Bishop Gorman (NV) stars Palaie Gaoteote and Jacob Isaia are playing this week at the Polynesian Bowl.
Gaoteote, who is on team Makai, is rated as the top linebacker in the nation by the 247 Sports composite rankings. The USC signee was a also Trojan when he last suited up in Hawai’i.
“‘Ie” was a starting linebacker as a freshman for Mililani High School in 2014 when the Trojans beat Punahou for the Division 1 state championship.
“All good things come to an end; so what better to just come home and finish it here?” Gaoteote said.
“You know coming home and playing back where you’re from. Just knowing that you’re representing your people, your Polynesian culture it’s always fun to come back and relax, kick it back and just refresh being at home. It’s always fun.”
Isaia, an offensive guard playing for team Mauka, played his freshman and sophomore years at ‘Iolani before transferring to Bishop Gorman.
The Michigan State commit felt a calling to come home and grow the Polynesian Bowl in it’s second year.
“It feels like I need to do this.” Isaia said.
“Its really special. I have a ton of family here, this is where it all started for me and playing in Aloha Stadium for my last game, it feels great.”
For the duo, the torch is being past from the recent wave of Polynesian football stars that have become team captains for the game.
“We got guys like Danny Shelton and DeForest Buckner.” Gaoteote said.
“They kind of just started the trend of the Polynesian bloodline and kind of just trailblazed everything so I find it in myself to trailblaze myself and to make it the way that they did for the other Polynesian kids. To have this game, I know that they didn’t get the opportunity to have that, but for me to have this opportunity it’s an importance for me to represent them and show them that they can do it.”
Cordeiro Gets the Call
University of Hawai’i signee Chevan Cordeiro was told by team Mauka head coach Dick Vermeil that he will get the start at quarterback tomorrow.
The 2017 Marcus Mariota state player of the year was listed by 247 Sports as a top performer in Friday’s final practice.
The Polynesian Bowl is scheduled for Saturday at 6 p.m. at Aloha Stadium. Click here for more information.