LAS VEGAS, NV – It was a very special moment for four Lahainaluna High School football captains as they represented Lahaina and the entire state of Hawaii as honorary coin toss captains at Super Bowl LVIII on Sunday.
Players Morgan “Bula” Montgomery, Teva Loft, Kaulana Tihada, and Kuola Watson were joined on the field by Lahainaluna football coaches Dean Rickard (co-head coach), Garret Tihada (associate head coach) and Bobby Watson (former head coach).
The news of their invitation to the Super Bowl came a little over six months after the Aug. 8 disaster that claimed at least 100 lives.
Before the coin toss, a video tribute documenting the devastating wildfire played before the audience. This video showcased the resilient team members, many of whom have lost their homes during the fires.
Last year, tickets for the homecoming game sold out in minutes, an indication of how badly Lahaina residents needed a glimmer of hope amid a tragedy that claimed at least 100 lives.
Through additional support from USA Football and Riddell, the NFL is replacing all football equipment, including helmets, shoulder pads, girdles, jerseys, and pants, for the Lahainaluna High School and Lahaina Intermediate School football teams.
The NFL will also provide footballs, mouthpieces, cleats, blocking pads, and tackling sleds to the Lahaina Chiefs Pop Warner team.
The NFL Films team recently released a documentary on the Lunas to highlight their journey from the tragedy on Maui to their season-opening game.
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