Posted: September 29, 2012 - 6:41pm
No. 1 Kahuku rolls to 31-6 win over No. 3 Farrington
Despite all the hype that went to the O'ahu Interscholastic Association's showcase of the season, the result was anti-climatic.
Kahuku dominated all phases en route to a 31-6 win against Farrington Saturday night at Hawaiian Airlines Field at Aloha Stadium.
"It was good to play a good team like this and come out with a big 'W,'" Kahuku's fourth-year all-purpose player Kawehena Johnson said. "It's always a great feeling when you beat a great team."
"We just didn't execute," Farrington's sophomore QB Montana Liana said. "This was a wake up call for us to get our heads on straight."
The Red Raiders, first in the ScoringLive/OC 16 Power Rankings, moved a step closer to clinching the OIA Red East title by improving to 5-0 with a crucial battle at Moanalua (4-1) next week. Na Menehune need to win to force a possible three-way tie for first with a coin toss to determine seeding. That happens if the No. 3 Governors (4-1) beat Kailua next week to close the regular season.
The three have clinched the top three seeds for the 12-team OIA Red tournament. Other East teams clinching berths are McKinley, Kailua and Castle, which eliminated Kaimuki (0-6) Saturday night.
Kahuku's defense set the tone, limiting Farrington to 167 yards of offense, 84 coming late with the game out of reach on a touchdown pass from Montana Liana to Francis Evangelia.
"They were quicker," Farrington coach Randall Okimoto said of Kahuku. "Fundamentally, they were sound tackling. We couldn't out-quick them. We couldn't adjust to their quickness."
Farrington's vaunted running back tandem of Tyler Taumua (46 yards on 12 carries) and Abraham Silva (16 yards on seven carries) were virtually held in check by Kahuku's defense. Liana was 5 of 11 for 25 yards with two interceptions before his TD pass to Evangelia.
Kahuku limited Farrington to just six first downs and 36 plays. The Red Raiders had 38 rushing plays alone and 16 pass attempts.
"All the mistake we made," Okimoto said. "With penalties and turnovers, we shouldn't be doing these things by now."
The Red Raiders jumped on the Governors early when Johnson intercepted Liana's pass nine yards for a touchdown with six minutes, 15 seconds in the first quarter. On the series before that, Johnson forced a fumble on Farrington's first play from scrimmage.
It was the first of two interceptions by the Red Raiders; the other was by Laselle Thompson. Also, LB Matai Paselio sacked Liana twice.
The turnovers were costly, as Farrington did a reasonable job itself of containing RB Aofaga Wily to just 61 yards on 19 carries with no scores. But 5-foot-9, 222-pound FB Polikapu Liua pounded the turf for 92 yards on just nine rushes, including TDs of 11 and 33 yards.
"Honestly, if you look at the stats, their defense did a good job against our offense," Kahuku coach Reggie Torres said. "We had some critical turnovers in the first half. We had that pick-six and another that gave us good field position. Those turnovers helped us."
Kahuku passed effectively, as Lasi Livai was 10 of 16 for 126 yards, including a 16-yard TD pass to Johnson. He was intercepted by Setefano Lavatai early in the game, but that was negated by Johnson's interception return.
After Johnson's interception return, the Red Raiders added another score on Liua's 46-yard TD run that capped an 11-play, 65-yard drive to make it 14-0 with 11:54 left in the half.
Following a fumble by Taumua that was recovered by Lamone Williams at the Farrington 24, the Red Raiders scored on Jake Samsel's 37-yard field goal to make it 17-0 with 4:29 in the half.
It stayed that way until the fourth quarter when Livai hit Johnson on a slant for a 16-yard TD pass with 10:32 left in the game to make it 24-0.
Kahuku then scored with 4:56 left in the game on Liua's 33-yard run to make it 31-0 before Farrington got on the board on Liana's short pass to Evangelia, who ran a good portion of the 84-yard play.
> Liua Jr. runs for two touchdowns in Red Raiders' win
September 29, 2012
Palikapu Liua, 33 yard touchdown run.
Francis Evangelia, 84 yard touchdown pass from Montana Liana.
> more video highlights
Kahuku quarterback Lasi Livai throws the ball against Farrington. Eugene Tanner | SL
Kahuku's Kawe Johnson was a key contributor on both sides of the football against Farrington, with 8 tackles, a forced fumble and an interception for TD to go along with a receiving score. Eugene Tanner | SL
Farrington lineback Syndreck Dsio was a force on defense against Kahuku, posting a game-high nine tackles. Eugene Tanner | SL
Farrington's Francis Evangelia ran 86 yards for the Govs only score against Kahuku. Greg Yamamoto | SL