Lahaina Chiefs thriving with new Unlimited Division
LAHAINA – After a sluggish couple of years, Lahaina Chiefs Pop Warner Football has gained the traction the organization had traditionally known for decades.
Led by Commissioner Athena Cajudoy and Lahaina Chiefs Division Presidents Jennifer Casper for the Junior Peewees, Melissa Ancheta representing the Peewees and Lani Kane leading the new Unlimited Program, the West Side youth football effort has once again become a force in Maui Pop Warner.
Commissioner Cajudoy also recognized the division coaches – JPW mentor Hoku Gonzales, PW head coach Charles Ancheta and unlimited leader Kai Keahi – as integral forces that helped revive Chiefs football.
“The formation of the Unlimited Division to replace the Midgets (that capped the weight limit for players at 155 pounds) has allowed the bigger boys in this age group to participate. Many of the kids came from the flag football program as well,” she explained last week as the teams prepared for the annual Turkey Bowl that took place last Friday.
“We also opened up registration in March instead of in the summertime, and the usual support of the Lahaina community really helped,” Cajudoy said. “This season, we had 70 kids in the three divisions to compete with the Kahului, Wailuku, Kulamalu, and Kihei teams.”
She also had high praise for the West Side community as a whole for the successes on the gridiron for the Chiefs and the Lahainaluna High School program. “This is such a tight football community and feels really good to see so many of the kids from Pop Warner move up and play for the Lunas.
“Our thanks goes out to the board members, coaches, families, friends, and the entire community for supporting Lahaina Chiefs Pop Warner. Special thanks to Big Al’s Barbecue Pit, Plantation House Restaurant, Island Grocery Depot, the Lahaina Recreation Center, Lahainaluna and the Imu (Sue D. Cooley Stadium) staff for all of the support and cooperation for helping get Lahaina Chiefs Pop Warner football moving forward once again,” Cajudoy concluded.