HANAPEPE — Milana Schaefer, a former Kaua‘i Pop Warner Football League and current Waimea High School cheerleader, was recognized Sunday as a Pop Warner Academic All-American scholar-athlete during the KPWFL games at Hanapepe Stadium.
Along with the certificate acknowledging her Academic All-American status, Schaefer earns an $850 scholarship upon her graduation from Waimea High and acceptance into college.
Her grandfather, Francis DeCosta, represented Schaefer’s ‘ohana in placing a head lei on the honoree as Wescon Regional Director Teddy Arroyo made the announcement between one of the many games being played and presenting Schaefer with her certificate.
“Each year, the most academically accomplished Pop Warner kids compete for Academic All-American status,” Arroyo said.
“This process starts at the association level and upwards through each of the eight Pop Warner regions to the national level. Pop Warner recognizes and awards scholar athletes from across the nation for their outstanding performance in the classroom, on the field and in the community. Being recognized as an All-American means you are amongst the top 1 percent of all Pop Warner participants,” said Arroyo.
KPWFL officials said Schaefer started cheering for the Kekaha Titans Pop Warner Association at 9 years old, and today is a member of the defending Kaua‘i Interscholastic Federation cheer champion Waimea High program that will be defending its KIF crown on Oct. 25 starting at 7:30 p.m. at the Clem Gomes Gym on the Waimea High campus.
“Academics and community service has always been important to Milana,” Arroyo said. “Every year during her time with Pop Warner she has been awarded for her scholastic achievements. Earlier this year, she earned the prestigious award of Pop Warner All American Senior Scholar, representing the top 1 percent for spirit and football in the nation.”
Schaefer hopes to inspire the young student athletes of the Kekaha Titans and all the Kaua‘i Pop Warner associations to continue to work hard on the field and in the classrooms.
The KPWFL changes the competition from the gridiron to the cheer and dance floor Sunday, Oct. 16, as the league hosts its island-wide cheer competition at the Bernice Hundley Gym on the Kapa‘a High campus. Doors open at 11 a.m. for the first in-person competition following the alternative formats held during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 808-245-0453 or email@example.com.
Source: The Garden Island