HALL PASS: Kahuku’s Kesi Ah-Hoy
Kesi Ah-Hoy helped Kahuku win state titles in football and basketball.
Over the next 24 hours, Hawaii Prep World and the Star-Advertiser will release 12 small features on the 2017 inductees into the Hall of Honor ahead of Sunday’s ceremony.
All Kesi Ah-Hoy does is deliver state championships.
For all of his accolades in football, where the Oregon State commit’s future resides, Ah-Hoy’s varsity career began in basketball where he was Kahuku’s best defensive player as a freshman. He joined the varsity for football for Lee Leslie as a sophomore and was immediately tabbed by the new coach as a player to build around, earning team MVP honors as a running back in a run to the state semifinals. He tasted the state semis again in basketball, where he repeated as Kahuku’s best defensive player.
Ah-Hoy’s junior season brought a new football coach in Vavae Tata, and he joined Leslie in trying to put the ball in his best athlete’s hands as often as possible with a position switch to wildcat quarterback. Ah-Hoy led the Red Raiders to their first state championship in three years, which is an eternity on the North Shore. He enjoyed his first mention on the Star-Advertiser’s All-State team and was named the OIA Offensive Player of the Year. A football injury after 70 carries in two state games knocked him out of the basketball season but he stayed around to support a team that reached the state semifinals.
Tata switched Ah-Hoy to defense for his senior year of football, and all the player did was deliver another dominating performance. Ah-Hoy teamed with Stokes Botelho and fellow Hall of Honor inductee Kekaula Kaniho to run roughshod over the OIA and a second-straight appearance in the state final. He came up with an interception but the Red Raiders lost to Saint Louis.
Ah-Hoy was first-team all state as a quarterback as a junior and defensive back as a senior. Only two other guys in history have moved from one side of the ball to the other and made first team for a newspaper. Kahuku’s Pisa Finai went from offensive end in 1972 to defensive back in 1973 and Wayne Apuna of Saint Louis went from defensive line in 1977 to tight end in 1978. Ah-Hoy did it off of the line, making him a one of a kind talent not seen since old-school legends like Kurt Gouveia.
Kahuku loaded up for the basketball season with a number of new starters, but Ah-Hoy’s role from his sophomore year didn’t change. He was the defensive stopper, voted to the all-defensive team by the Star-Advertiser, and held captain duties for Kahuku’s first state title in basketball since taking the A division in 1974.
Ah-Hoy is one of six players in the Hall of Honor to participate on state championship football and basketball teams, joining Kamehameha’s Chaz Bajet and Punahou trio Manti Teo, Kanawai Noa and Micah Ma’a.