Riding a 28-game win-streak as three-time defending state champions, the Saint Louis Crusaders will hit the field Friday night playing for much more than “The Brotherhood” in the Aloha Football Classic.
Ranked No. 1 in the latest Cover2 state rankings, the Crusaders are ranked No. 10 in the country per MaxPreps and will face-off against No. 16 Bishop Gorman of Las Vegas.
After a 2-0 start to the season, Saint Louis has been dialed in at practice this, shifting its focus to not only representing the slopes of Kalaepohaku, but the football-playing state of Hawaii.
“This is not just for Saint Louis, this is for the whole state of Hawaii, and it feels great that we have this opportunity,” said Saint Louis linebacker Nick Herbig. “It’s on us to make it happen. It’s a great feeling to be able to play a great team like Bishop Gorman. They’re a national powerhouse and we’ve all wanted this opportunity since last year.
“We wanted a chance to play a powerhouse and really show everybody that Hawaii has talent, but we’re really excited. I can’t wait. I hope it’s pumping. I hope it’s more than the state championship to be honest. I want the whole state to be there, and just support us and rally behind us.”
Bishop Gorman, three-time national champions, have been a national powerhouse for quite some time. An impressive showing by the Crusaders on Saturday would change the landscape of Hawaii high school football.
“We have the opportunity this week to show that the Hawaii teams can compete with the mainland teams,” said quarterback Jayden De Laura. “We’ve been waiting for this since we found out that we had this game scheduled. We’ve been preparing before practice, after practice, watching film on our own, and I think we’re all just excited.”
Kickoff between the Crusaders and Gaels is set for 7:30 p.m. HST at Aloha Stadium. Earlier in the evening, Mililani will face Liberty at Kauinana Stadium. Neither game will be televised. For ticket and game information, click here.