Colleges

St. Aug football has Hawaiin flair

Posted September 15, 2012

— Christian Kelii-Kama and Joseph Pelesasa are freshmen football players at St . Augustine's University in Raleigh. Given their backgrounds, it is no surprise they had a little culture shock when they arrived on campus this summer

"Everything. Everything is the biggest change,” said offensive lineman Kelii-Kama. “Culture-wise, temperature-wise, almost everything."

Keli-Kama and Pelesasa came to North Carolina from Hawaii – roughly 4,700 miles. That is quite the distance to travel to play college football.

St. Aug has Hawaiian influence on gridiron St. Aug has Hawaiian influence on gridiron

"They showed us they were very interested in coming to the mainland,” head football coach Michael Costa said. “They were good football players."

Hawaii isn't exactly in the recruiting budget for St. Aug, so the coaches used some creativity to get out to the island and find some talent.

"Our basketball team was playing in Hawaii and a few of our administrators couldn't attend,” Costa said. “Our president (Dr. Dianne Suber ) decided we could do some recruiting."

So the coaches visited every school they could and found two guys who would agree to take a on a small school thousands of miles from home.

"I gave my life into the coach's hands,” Pelesasa said. “He said he was going to take care of me. School has been great. I thank them for that. I thank the Lord."

And now the two Hawaiins are sharing some culture with their teammates.

"Manah...It means power.” Pelesasa, a linebacker, said. “Hawain power. Also swag. The island feeling."

"Over there, they are very disciplined about what they do,” Costa said. “They were coached old-school. Not a lot of nonsense."

The two freshmen are quickly becoming leaders for the Falcon team. Their only complaint so far? North Carolina is too humid.

1 Comment

Please with your WRAL.com account to comment on this story. You also will need a Facebook account to comment.

Oldest First
View all
  • hawaiigirl2nc Sep 21, 2012

    Um im sorry but at least you can do a little research on the spelling on the HAWAIIAN words... And it is not manah.. Its MANA... Sorry but im from Hawaii and reading this article from boys from Hawai'i I was very proud and happy. But have taken back from a news article to have miss spelled words... Very disappointed.

TV
  • PGA Tour: Hero World Challenge

    Today at 1:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Carolina at Seattle

    Tonight at 8:20 on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Oakland at Kansas City

    Thursday at 8:30 pm on WRAL-TV

NFL Scoreboard
Thursday, Dec. 1
Dallas17Final
Minnesota15
Sunday, Dec. 4
Kansas City 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET18:00 GMT2:00 北京时间11:00 MST1:00 EST12:00 CT22:00 UAE13:00 ETNaN:�
Preview
Atlanta 
Miami 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET18:00 GMT2:00 北京时间11:00 MST1:00 EST12:00 CT22:00 UAE13:00 ETNaN:�
Preview
Baltimore 
San Francisco 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET18:00 GMT2:00 北京时间11:00 MST1:00 EST12:00 CT22:00 UAE13:00 ETNaN:�
Preview
Chicago 
Philadelphia 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET18:00 GMT2:00 北京时间11:00 MST1:00 EST12:00 CT22:00 UAE13:00 ETNaN:�
Preview
Cincinnati 
Houston 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET18:00 GMT2:00 北京时间11:00 MST1:00 EST12:00 CT22:00 UAE13:00 ETNaN:�
Preview
Green Bay 
Denver 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET18:00 GMT2:00 北京时间11:00 MST1:00 EST12:00 CT22:00 UAE13:00 ETNaN:�
Preview
Jacksonville 
Los Angeles 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET18:00 GMT2:00 北京时间11:00 MST1:00 EST12:00 CT22:00 UAE13:00 ETNaN:�
Preview
New England 
Detroit 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET18:00 GMT2:00 北京时间11:00 MST1:00 EST12:00 CT22:00 UAE13:00 ETNaN:�
Preview
New Orleans 
Buffalo 1:05 PT2:05 MT3:05 CT4:05 ET21:05 GMT5:05 北京时间2:05 MST4:05 EST3:05 CT1:05 UAE (+1)16:05 ETNaN:�
Preview
Oakland 
Washington 1:25 PT2:25 MT3:25 CT4:25 ET21:25 GMT5:25 北京时间2:25 MST4:25 EST3:25 CT1:25 UAE (+1)16:25 ETNaN:�
Preview
Arizona 
NY Giants 1:25 PT2:25 MT3:25 CT4:25 ET21:25 GMT5:25 北京时间2:25 MST4:25 EST3:25 CT1:25 UAE (+1)16:25 ETNaN:�
Preview
Pittsburgh 
Tampa Bay 1:25 PT2:25 MT3:25 CT4:25 ET21:25 GMT5:25 北京时间2:25 MST4:25 EST3:25 CT1:25 UAE (+1)16:25 ETNaN:�
Preview
San Diego 
Carolina 5:30 PT6:30 MT7:30 CT8:30 ET1:30 GMT9:30 北京时间6:30 MST8:30 EST7:30 CT5:30 UAE (+1)20:30 ETNaN:�
Preview
Seattle 
Monday, Dec. 5
Indianapolis 5:30 PT6:30 MT7:30 CT8:30 ET1:30 GMT9:30 北京时间6:30 MST8:30 EST7:30 CT5:30 UAE (+1)20:30 ETNaN:�
Preview
NY Jets 
Minor League Baseball
International League
El Paso 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET12:05 GMT
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre