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Sunday, December 8, 2002


[ UH FOOTBALL ]



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GEORGE F. LEE / GLEE@STARBULLETIN.COM
Hawaii's Nate Ilaoa picked up some yardage against San Diego State defenders Ricky Sharpe, Beau Trickey and Josh Dean last night. The Warriors won by one point.




UH rallies
past Aztecs

The Warriors overcome an 11-point
fourth-quarter deficit to get their 10th win

Scoring drives
Sidelines
UH seniors enjoy last regular-season game
Aztecs put on an air show


By Dave Reardon
dreardon@starbulletin.com

Another Saturday and another demon cast aside for the Hawaii football team.

The spirit of Marshall Faulk seemed to possess the San Diego State Aztecs most of last night, as they zipped across the Aloha Stadium turf at their leisure.

The Sheriff (SDSU quarterback Lon) picked up where the Marshall left off a decade ago. But when this 1,332-yard shootout was over, the Warriors finished with the ball and a 41-40 win -- the first victory against San Diego State after nine consecutive losses, and another notch to add to the Mountain West-buster belt.

Hawaii is 3-1 against Western Athletic Conference defectors.

"Hawaii has an awfully good football team," SDSU coach Tom Craft said, after some grousing about penalties. "They're quick and big up front."

And pretty good late in games.

UH tackle Uriah Moenoa said he wasn't worried when the Warriors trailed 40-29 in the fourth quarter, and no one among the 32,892 in the house should have been.

"I had no doubt whatsoever that we would win," he said. "Fans should know by now that this team executes late in games and always has the will to go on. This team does not give up."

Nate Ilaoa scored on a 2-yard run with 4 minutes, 45 seconds left, and Travis LaBoy's fourth-down sack of Sheriff with 2:20 left helped lock it up.

"It's just great to be able to contribute like that," Ilaoa said. "I was just playing my part."

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GEORGE F. LEE / GLEE@STARBULLETIN.COM
Hawaii's Shawn Withy-Allen easily ran into the end zone in Hawaii's close win last night.




A senior-night crowd saw the Warriors withstand 632 yards of offense by the Aztecs. The Warriors, who put up 610 yards of offense, were at their big-play yielding and big-play producing best.

Hawaii advances to the Dec. 25 ConAgra Foods Hawaii Bowl with a 10-3 mark, while San Diego State ends its season at 4-9.

"We didn't quit. It was pretty incredible," Warriors coach June Jones said. "Big players make big plays in big games, and that's what our guys did."

UH, a 14-point favorite, was hurt by five turnovers. Quarterback Tim Chang was intercepted four times for the second game in a row.

But Chang, who completed 33 of 54 passes for 437 yards, also threw for three touchdowns.

Sheriff and his posse of receivers J.R. Tolver and Kassim Osgood -- who had the best season as a duo in NCAA history -- and kicker Tommy Kirovski almost did in the Warriors.

Tolver caught 18 passes for 283 yards (a UH opponents record for receiving yards) and two TDs. He passed Greg Primus of Colorado State, who had 256 yards receiving against Hawaii on Sept. 28, 1991.

Osgood caught five passes for 116 yards.

Sheriff completed 31 of 47 passes with no interceptions and three touchdowns for 420 yards.

San Diego State scored 23 consecutive points after the Warriors had built a 22-3 lead. But UH went back in front when a 3-yard Chang-to-Britton Komine touchdown pass capped a 14-play, 79-yard drive that took 5 minutes, 52 seconds of the third quarter. The Warriors led 29-26 after the second Chang-Komine TD of the game.

The Aztecs came right back. Tolver and Sheriff burned the Hawaii secondary for a 69-yard touchdown pass, making it 33-29 with under a minute left in the third quarter.

After UH's Neal Gossett fumbled in the SDSU end zone and the Aztecs Kirk Morrison recovered, San Diego State went 80 yards in six plays. The drive included a 60 yard pass from Sheriff to Tolver and was completed with a 6-yard TD from Sheriff to Osgood. That made it 40-29.

Then Hawaii rallied.

Thero Mitchell scored on a 2-yard run, and UH's defense stiffened on the next series. LaBoy had a tackle for loss and Pisa Tinoisamoa's 8-yard sack on third down forced an Aztecs punt.

"The defense knows if they hang in and get the ball, we can win, no matter the score," Jones said. "That attitude has prevailed."

UH started at its own 8 when Chad Owens fumbled for a 22-yard loss.

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GEORGE F. LEE / GLEE@STARBULLETIN.COM
Hawaii's Uriah Moenoa and Wayne Hunter hugged Nate Ilaoa after Ilaoa scored a 2-point conversion last night.




But Chang drove the Warriors down the field in eight plays, including a 42-yard run by Ilaoa and a 23-yard pass to Komine to the 2, setting up Ilaoa's game-winning TD.

San Diego State then drove steadily from its 20, but the drive stalled at UH's 37, and LaBoy -- who had five tackles for loss among his seven stops -- made his big play on fourth down.

"All that was was No. 1 making a play that he can make," UH defensive coordinator Kevin Lempa said. "That's all that was. He told me before that series he was going to make the play to win the game.

"We tried about five different defenses tonight," Lempa said. "That worked."

Said LaBoy: "We were all out there pretty much trying to make a huge play. It just so happened it was me this time."

Kirovski's third of four field goals, a 36-yarder, gave the Aztecs a 23-22 lead 2 minutes, 26 seconds into the second half. A 54-yard run by Michael Franklin set it up.

Kirovski knocked a 21-yarder through just 2:28 later, after Tim Chang was intercepted for the third time, this time by LaVance Ray at the Hawaii 32.

Early on, it was apparent this would be a shootout as advertised.

Hawaii was stopped on its first possession, and Josiah Cravalho downed Mat McBriar's punt at the SDSU 1, but the Aztecs' first play brought back bad memories for Hawaii fans. Osgood caught a screen pass in his own end zone and sprinted for an 87-yard gain to the Hawaii 12. He looked like a 6-foot-5 version of Faulk, the back who ran wild at Aloha Stadium when he played for SDSU.

After the longest gain of the season against the Warriors, Kelvin Millhouse and Abraham Elimimian knocked down passes into the end zone, and the Aztecs settled for a 23-yard field goal by Kirovski and a 3-0 lead.

Hawaii tied on its next possession, as Justin Ayat hit his 15th field goal of the season from 31 yards.

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GEORGE F. LEE / GLEE@STARBULLETIN.COM
UH's Keani Alapa blocked a Brian Simnjanovski punt last night.




UH took a 9-3 lead the next time it got the ball. Shawn Withy-Allen ran for a 3-yard TD. The Warriors began the drive on the SDSU 40-yard line thanks to a key stop on third-and-two by Houston Ala and Chad Kapanui's block of the Aztecs' punt.

The second blocked punt, this one by Keani Alapa, gave UH the ball in San Diego State territory again. Tim Chang hit Jeremiah Cockheran for a 48-yard touchdown pass on the next play and the Warriors lead was 15-3 after a failed 2-point conversion try.

Things continued to fall apart for SDSU. David Gilmore stripped the ball after a Tolver reception and Chris Brown recovered at the Aztecs' 39.

Chang cashed in five plays later on an 18-yard TD pass to Komine. Hawaii led 22-3 at 13:32 of the second quarter.

Sheriff passed 2 yards to Tolver for SDSU's first touchdown, capping a 10-play, 80-yard drive, closing the score to 22-10 at 9:17 before halftime.

Marviel Underwood intercepted Chang two plays later, and the Aztecs mounted another TD drive from their 49. Fred Collins ran in from 1 yard out. The score came three plays after Gilmore recovered an apparent fumble, but Tolver was ruled down before Pisa Tinoisamoa knocked the ball out of his hands. The Warriors' lead was cut to 22-17 at 5:35 prior to the break.

Hawaii went three-and-out, and a bad bounce on McBriar's 31-yard punt set SDSU up at its 44. Kirovski's second field goal, for 32 yards, made it 22-20 with 1:20 remaining.

Beau Trickey's interception of Chang's pass that bounced off Justin Colbert's hands and Sheriff's 19-yard pass to Ronnie Davenport gave the Aztecs a chance to go into the locker room with a lead. But Kirovski's 53-yard field goal try went wide left on the last play of the half.


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[ SCORING DRIVES ]

FIRST QUARTER

SAN DIEGO STATE

1-10-S-1: Kassim Osgood 87 pass from J.R. Tolver.

1-10-H-12: James Truvillion 7 run.

2-3-H-5: Incomplete pass.

3-3-H-5: Incomplete pass.

4-3-H-5: Tommy Kirovski 23 field goal -- GOOD.

5 plays, 94 yards, 1:34

9:41 left in the first quarter.

SAN DIEGO STATE 3, HAWAII 0

Notes: Osgood's 87-yard reception was the Aztecs' longest play from scrimmage this season. He caught the pass in the end zone and sprinted up the middle of the field before being caught by Kelvin Millhouse. ... Kirovski's 13th field goal of the season.

HAWAII

1-10-H-21: Incomplete pass.

2-10-H-21: Incomplete pass.

3-10-H-21: Justin Colbert 11 pass from Tim Chang.

1-10-H-32: Nate Ilaoa 25 pass from Tim Chang.

1-10-S-43: Mike Bass 1 run. Penalty -- deadball personal foul, SDSU.

1-10-S-29: Mike Bass 4 run.

2-6-S-25: Incomplete pass.

3-6-S-25: Jeremiah Cockheran 9 pass from Tim Chang.

1-10-S-16: Incomplete pass.

2-10-S-16: Penalty -- false start, UH.

2-15-S-21: Justin Colbert 7 pass from Tim Chang.

3-8-S-14: Incomplete pass.

4-8-S-14: Justin Ayat 31 field goal -- GOOD.

12 plays, 65 yards, 3:22.

6:19 left in the first quarter.

HAWAII 3, SAN DIEGO STATE 3

Notes: Ayat now 15-for-23 in field goals this season and increased his scoring total to a team-high 94 points.

HAWAII

1-10-S-39: Mike Bass 9 run.

2-1-S-30: Chad Owens 18 pass from Tim Chang.

1-10-S-12: Incomplete pass.

2-10-S-12: John West 9 run.

3-1-S-3: Shawn Withy-Allen 3 run -- TOUCHDOWN.

PAT: Justin Ayat run failed.

5 plays, 39 yards, 1:56.

2:30 left in the first quarter.

HAWAII 9, SAN DIEGO STATE 3.

Notes: Withy-Allen's third rushing touchdown this season. ... The drive was set up by Chad Kapanui's block of a Brian Simnjanovski punt. The kick traveled 10 yards.

HAWAII

1-10-S-48: Jeremiah Cockheran 48 pass from Tim Chang -- TOUCHDOWN.

PAT: Shawn Withy-Allen pass failed.

1 play, 48 yards, :07.

0:44 left in the first quarter.

HAWAII 15, SAN DIEGO STATE 3.

Notes: Cockheran's fifth touchdown reception of the season. Chang's 23rd TD pass. ... Chang has thrown a touchdown pass in 11 consecutive games. ... The drive was set up by Keani Alapa's block of a Brian Simnjanovski punt, the second block in as many attempts.



SECOND QUARTER

HAWAII

1-10-S-39: Justin Colbert 12 pass from Tim Chang.

End of the first quarter.

1-10-S-27: John West 2 run.

2-8-S-25: Incomplete pass.

3-8-S-25: John West 7 run.

4-1-S-18: Britton Komine 18 pass from Tim Chang -- TOUCHDOWN.

PAT: Justin Ayat kick -- GOOD.

5 plays, 39 yards, 1:52.

13:32 left in the second quarter.

HAWAII 22, SAN DIEGO STATE 3.

Notes: Hawaii gained possession when David Gilmore forced a fumble by SDSU's J.R. Tolver and Chris Brown recovered for the Warriors. ... Komine's team-high ninth touchdown catch. ... Hawaii now 13-for-25 on fourth down this season.

SAN DIEGO STATE

1-10-S-20: Lon Sheriff 19 run.

1-10-S-39: J.R. Tolver 2 pass from Lon Sheriff.

2-8-S-41: Ronnie Davenport 7 pass from Lon Sheriff.

3-1-S-48: Fred Collins 16 run.

1-10-H-36: J.R. Tolver 6 pass from Lon Sheriff. Penalty -- facemask, UH.

1-10-H-25: Ronnie Davenport 12 pass from Lon Sheriff.

Timeout -- SDSU (second).

1-10-H-13: Fred Collins (-3) run.

2-13-H-16: Kassim Osgood 5 pass from Lon Sheriff.

3-8-H-11: J.R. Tolver pass 9 from Lon Sheriff.

1-G-H-2: J.R. Tolver 2 pass from Lon Sheriff -- TOUCHDOWN.

PAT: Tommy Kirovski kick -- GOOD.

10 plays, 80 yards, 4:15.

9:17 left in the second quarter.

HAWAII 22, SAN DIEGO STATE 10.

Notes: Tolver's 12th touchdown catch of the season. ... Sheriff's fifth scoring pass, all coming in the last three games.

SAN DIEGO STATE

1-10-S-49: Ronnie Davenport 8 pass from Lon Sheriff.

2-2-H-43: J.R. Tolver 10 pass from Lon Sheriff.

1-10-H-33: Fred Collins 9 run.

2-1-H-24: Kassim Osgood 9 pass from Lon Sheriff.

1-10-H-15: Fred Collins 8 run.

2-2-H-7: J.R. Tolver 6 pass from Lon Sheriff.

1-G-H-1: Fred Collins 1 run -- TOUCHDOWN.

PAT:Tommy Kirovski kick -- GOOD.

7 plays, 51 yards, 2:34.

5:35 left in the second quarter.

HAWAII 22, SAN DIEGO STATE 17.

Notes: Collins' second touchdown run of the season. ... The Aztecs gained possession on Marviel Underwood's interception of a Tim Chang pass.

SAN DIEGO STATE

1-10-S-44: Ronnie Davenport 22 pass from Lon Sheriff.

1-10-H-34: J.R. Tolver 12 pass from Lon Sheriff.

1-10-H-22: Lon Sheriff sacked by Travis LaBoy (-2).

2-12-H-24: Ronnie Davenport 9 pass from Lon Sheriff.

3-3-H-15: Incomplete pass.

4-3-H-15: Tommy Kirovski 32 field goal -- GOOD.

6 plays, 41 yards, 2:17.

1:20 left in the second quarter.

HAWAII 22, SAN DIEGO STATE 20.

Notes: Kirovski's second field goal of the game gives San Diego State 17 unanswered points. .... The incomplete pass snapped Sheriff's string of 15 consecutive completions. ... LaBoy recorded his fifth sack of the season, good for second on the team.



THIRD QUARTER

SAN DIEGO STATE

1-10-S-20: J.R. Tolver 11 pass from Lon Sheriff.

1-10-S-31: Ronnie Davenport 10 pass from Lon Sheriff.

1-10-S-41: Michael Franklin 55 run.

1-G-H-4: Incomplete pass.

2-G-H-4: James Truvillion (-5) run. Penalty -- deadball personal foul, SDSU.

3-G-H-24: Michael Franklin 5 run.

4-G-H-19: Tommy Kirovski field goal 36 -- GOOD.

7 plays, 61 yards, 1:36.

13:24 left in the third quarter.

SAN DIEGO STATE 23, HAWAII 22.

Notes: Opening drive of the second half. ... San Diego extends its run to 20 unanswered points with Kirovski's third field goal of the night.

SAN DIEGO STATE

1-10-H-32: Kassim Osgood 19 pass from Lon Sheriff.

1-10-H-13: Michael Franklin 2 run.

2-8-H-11: Incomplete pass.

3-8-H-11: J.R. Tolver 7 pass from Lon Sheriff.

4-1-H-4: Tommy Kirovski 22 field goal -- GOOD.

5 plays, 28 yards, 1:56.

11:06 left in the third quarter.

SAN DIEGO STATE 26, HAWAII 22

Notes: The drive was set up by LaVance Ray's interception of a Tim Chang pass. Chang's third interception of the night. ... Four field goals is a season high for Kirovski.

HAWAII

1-10-H-21: Justin Colbert 7 pass from Tim Chang.

2-3-H-28: Incomplete pass.

3-3-H-28: Neal Gossett 11 pass from Tim Chang.

1-10-H-39: Neal Gossett 10 pass from Tim Chang.

1-10-H-49: Incomplete pass.

2-10-H-49: John West 12 run.

1-10-S-39: Tim Chang 6 run.

2-4-S-33: Penalty -- false start, UH.

2-9-S-38: Neal Gossett 7 pass from Tim Chang.

3-2-S-31: Britton Komine 6 pass from Tim Chang.

1-10-S-25: John West 4 run.

2-6-S-21: John West 11 run.

1-G-S-10: Justin Colbert 3 pass from Tim Chang.

2-G-S-7: John West 4 run.

3-G-S-3: Britton Komine 3 pass from Tim Chang -- TOUCHDOWN.

PAT: Justin Ayat kick -- GOOD.

14 plays, 79 yards, 5:52.

1:41 left in the third quarter.

HAWAII 29, SAN DIEGO STATE 26.

Notes: Komine's second touchdown catch of the game and his 10th of the season. ... West accounted for 31 yards on four carries on the drive.

SAN DIEGO STATE

1-10-S-27: J.R. Tolver 4 pass from Lon Sheriff.

2-6-S-33: Incomplete pass.

3-6-S-33: J.R. Tolver 69 pass from Lon Sheriff -- TOUCHDOWN.

PAT: Tommy Kirovski kick -- GOOD.

3 plays, 73 yards, 1:03.

0:38 left in the third quarter.

SAN DIEGO STATE 33, HAWAII 29.

Notes: Tolver's second touchdown of the night. After three quarters he had 13 catches for 188 yards, giving him his eighth 100-yard performance of the season. ... The 69-yard TD pass was the second longest scoring pass surrendered by Hawaii this season. The longest was a 90-yarder against San Jose State.



FOURTH QUARTER

SAN DIEGO STATE

1-10-S-20: J.R. Tolver 12 pass from Lon Sheriff.

1-10-S-32: Incomplete pass.

2-10-S-32: Incomplete pass.

3-10-S-32: J.R. Tolver 60 pass from Lon Sheriff.

1-G-H-8: Michael Franklin 2 run.

2-G-H-6: Kassim Osgood 6 pass from Lon Sheriff -- TOUCHDOWN.

PAT: Tommy Kirovski kick -- GOOD.

6 plays, 80 yards, 1:04.

12:46 left in the fourth quarter.

SAN DIEGO STATE 40, HAWAII 29.

Notes: Osgood's eighth touchdown reception of the season. Sheriff's third TD pass of the game. ... SDSU gained possession when Kirk Morrison recovered a fumble by Hawaii's Neal Gossett in the end zone.

HAWAII

1-10-S-48: John West 17 pass from Tim Chang.

1-10-S-31: John West 15 run. Penalty -- personal foul, SDSU.

1-G-S-8: Incomplete pass.

2-G-S-8: Incomplete pass.

3-G-S-8: Penalty -- pass interference in the end zone, SDSU.

1-G-S-2: Thero Mitchell 2 run -- TOUCHDOWN.

PAT: Penalty -- offside, SDSU. Tim Chang pass failed.

5 plays, 48 yards, 0:44.

10:57 left in the fourth quarter.

SAN DIEGO STATE 40, HAWAII 35.

Notes: Mitchell's 10th touchdown run of the season. He averages a score every five carries.

HAWAII

1-10-H-7: Thero Mitchell 13 pass from Tim Chang.

1-10-H-20: Tim Chang 3 run.

2-7-H-23: Justin Colbert 13 pass from Tim Chang.

1-10-H-36: Nate Ilaoa 42 run.

1-10-S-22: Tim Chang sacked by Heath Farwell (-11).

2-21-S-32: John West 8 run.

3-13-S-25: Britton Komine 23 pass from Tim Chang.

1-G-S-2: Nate Ilaoa 2 run -- TOUCHDOWN.

Timeout -- UH (first).

PAT: Penalty -- false start, UH. John West run failed.

8 plays, 93 yards, 3:50.

4:45 left in the fourth quarter.

HAWAII 41, SAN DIEGO STATE 40.

Notes: Ilaoa's first rushing touchdown of the season and his fourth overall. ... His 42-yard run was his longest of the season. ... Komine extended the drive with a diving catch at the SDSU 2 on third-and-13. ... Hawaii got the ball at its own 7 after Brian Simnjanovski booted a 56-yard punt and Chad Owens mishandled it for a 22-yard loss.



UH Athletics



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