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Saturday, September 14, 2002


[ HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL ]



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GEORGE F. LEE / GLEE@STARBULLETIN.COM
McKinley running back Michael Vasconcellos was taken down by a Kahuku defender after a run last night.




Kahuku escapes McKinley
with 14-13 win

De La Salle, Poly win
Surfriders easily survive Governors
Sabers go airborne to beat Radford


By Jason Kaneshiro
jkaneshiro@starbulletin.com

It has been nearly two years since Kahuku lost a game, but the Red Raiders have rarely faced a test as stern as the one McKinley presented last night at Aloha Stadium.

Kahuku survived a persistent McKinley attack to escape with a 14-13 victory over the Tigers in an Oahu Interscholastic Association Red Conference battle before a crowd of 2,978.

The Red Raiders improved to 3-0 in the OIA Red-East Division and extended their winning streak to 26 games heading into next week's showdown with Long Beach Poly in the HHSAA Football Classic. McKinley fell to 1-1 in league play.

"Honestly, you can't keep focused on where you're supposed to be focused," Kahuku coach Siuaki Livai said, referring to the effects of the much-anticipated game with Poly.

"It's a big relief right now. Right now I can honestly say it will be week to week. We're not looking past next week and after that we're just going to truly focus. But no excuses, McKinley played great. They're going to be tough down the road."

The Tigers controlled much of the game, outgaining Kahuku 327-250 in total offense. McKinley junior quarterback Abel Werner completed 17 of 27 passes for 165 yards and one interception and carried the ball 21 times for 37 yards.

But the Kahuku defense came up with big plays at crucial moments in the red zone, none bigger than Juliano's 90-yard interception return for a touchdown late in the first half.

"We could move the ball from the 20 to the 20, we just didn't do a good enough job where it counted in the red zone, we didn't finish it," McKinley coach David Tanuvasa said. "A lot of it is Kahuku just plays tough in the red zone."

McKinley took a 7-6 lead into halftime, but matter could have been much worse for Kahuku. The Tigers drove into Kahuku territory on five of its six possessions in the first half, breaking inside the 20 three times.

The Red Raiders were able to deny the Tigers on three occasions, thanks in part to three sacks, two by David Alisa.

The Tigers took the lead with 1:29 left in the first quarter on Michael Vasconcellos' 34-yard dash on a draw play for a touchdown.

McKinley was driving again late in the second quarter when Werner lofted a pass down the left side that Juliano intercepted at the Kahuku 10. Juliano found open field along the Kahuku sideline and Afa Garrigan's block on Werner cleared the way to the end zone.

Kahuku elected to go for the two-point conversion, but Seth Cravens was stopped short of the goal line and McKinley took a one-point lead into the locker room.

The Tigers drove to the Kahuku 2 on its first possession of the second half, but the Red Raiders turned them away again forcing an incompletion on fourth-and-goal.

The Kahuku offense responded by driving 93 yards in 11 plays to take the lead.

At Aloha Stadium

Kahuku (2-0, 2-0) 0 6 8 0 -- 14

McKinley (1-0, 2-0) 7 0 0 6 -- 13

McK--Michael Vasconcellos 35 run (John Mai kick)
Kah--Kyle Juliano 90 interception return (run failed)
Kah--Juliano 34 run (Robert Tuifua pass from Waika Carvalho)
McK--Vasconcellos 1 run (run failed)

RUSHING -- Kah: Sione Fotu 5-30, Cy Naki 3-19, Spencer Hafoka 11-42, Tuifua 2-8, Carvalho 4-22, Juliano 6-55, George Perry 3-23, Michael Garcia 3-23. McK: Vasconcellos 14-59, Abel Werner 21-37, Joshua Bumanglag 3-45.

PASSING -- Kah: Hafoka 1-1-0-7, Carvalho 3-7-0-20. McK: Werner 17-27-1-165, Anapuni Coleman 1-2-0-21.

RECEIVING -- Kah: Kelii Kahananui 1-7, Fotu 1-2, Hafoka 2-18. McK: Isaiah Iaea 8-96, Iakopo Taumua 2-21, Golden Lawrence 3-12, Vasconcellos 2-14, Bumanglag 3-43.

Junior varsity -- Kahuku 32, McKinley 13


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De La Salle, Poly win



The two California teams headed to Hawaii next week for a historic high school football doubleheader will be coming off shutout wins.

De La Salle (Concord, Calif.) defeated Archbishop Mitty (San Jose, Calif.) 24-0 last night. The season-opening win is the Spartans' 126th in a row.

De La Salle, No. 1 in the national Student Sports Fab 50 poll, will play No. 13 St. Louis in the feature game of the HHSAA/First Hawaiian Bank Football Classic at 8 p.m. next Saturday at Aloha Stadium.

Long Beach Poly, No. 7 in the nation, beat Westchester (Calif.) 45-0, also last night. The Jackrabbits will face two-time defending state champion Kahuku at 5 p.m. next Saturday.

For ticket information, call 484-1122 or 1-877-750-4400.


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