Sports Notebook

Ilaoa another
Hawaii casualty

Unlucky 18th hole keeps Mast out of playoff

By Dave Reardon

BOISE, Idaho >> Hawaii's streak of losing a key player to injury in every game this season continued, as inside receiver Nate Ilaoa suffered a subluxation to his right shoulder.

It may be the most painful injury the offense has suffered yet this season.

It was not known if Ilaoa, who missed the Brigham Young game last month with a hamstring injury suffered in practice, will be able to play in Saturday's game against Nevada at Aloha Stadium. Hawaii coach June Jones says that even that could be optimistic.

"He could be out for 3-4 weeks," Jones said. "We're not sure yet."

Ilaoa has played four games, catching nine passes for 119 yards and two touchdowns.

Safety Leonard Peters, who was slated to start before a preseason abdominal injury, returned to action in the Southern Methodist game. On Saturday, he was in on two tackles.

Defensive tackle Lui Fuga (ankle), special teams standout Jonathan Kauka (knee), cornerback Abraham Elimimian (hamstring) and running back Mike Bass (knee) are the other starters or key reserves who have missed playing time due to injuries suffered in games.

Jones was obviously displeased with the outcome of Saturday's 58-31 loss at Boise State.

There were some questionable calls by the officials, but Jones stopped short of blaming them for UH's worst loss in two years.

"I can't comment on the referees," he said, when asked about a 44-yard pass play in the third quarter from Tim Chang to Britton Komine that turned into a fumble recovery for BSU. The officials ruled Komine coughed up the ball before he hit the ground.

Komine did talk about the play. But the only blame he placed was on himself.

"It was too close, period. If I secured it better there wouldn't have been any thought by anyone of it being a fumble and it could have turned the drive into a score," he said.

The Broncos had just improved their lead to 38-10 after a 10-minute, 22-second drive to open the second half. So it's debatable if a score by UH would have gotten the Warriors back into the game at that point.

But the turnover certainly didn't help; BSU safety Wes Nurse's 36-yard return of the fumble forced by rover Quintin Mikell set up another Broncos score that made it 45-10.

A call with the score 21-3 might have been more pivotal. From some angles, it appeared that a diving Chad Owens cradled a fourth-down pass from Tim Chang that would have kept a UH drive alive at the Boise State 10. But an official ruled an incomplete pass. TV replays appeared to indicate Owens did not have control of the ball.

Penalties were not a factor in the outcome: UH was flagged six times for 39 yards, while BSU got called 10 times for 93 yards.

No place like ... : There's only one way to describe Boise State's Bronco Stadium. It's unique.

The blue turf stood out in stark contrast to a beautiful backdrop of evergreen trees and mountains in the distance. A horse circled the field and one of those leftover-from-the-'70s bullpen carts, with a big BSU helmet, did the same.

The 25,857 fans made up for their lack of numbers with noisemakers and enthusiasm. One fan painted his face in the style of UH mascot Vili Fehoko, but wore a Boise State T-shirt and taunted the Warriors throughout the game.

"This crowd was totally anti-Warrior and so into it. The weather, the turf. It's a whole different place," UH middle linebacker Chris Brown said. "It kind of threw us off, but it shouldn't have bothered us at all."

Actually, the weather was pretty good -- a crisp 66 degrees with sunny and clear skies and a 15-mph wind. But the other factors did give BSU a home-field edge.

The Broncos have won eight straight games and 22 of their last 23 at home. They host Fresno State in two weeks after traveling to Tulsa on Saturday.

Might have done the same: Jones said he didn't have a problem with BSU trying a halfback pass from Brock Forsey to quarterback B.J. Rhode with a little more than 10 minutes left and a 45-17 lead. The pass, which could have gone for a 13-yard touchdown, fell incomplete as Forsey's throw led Rhode too far.

BSU settled for a 29-yard field goal.

Broncos coach Dan Hawkins said the game wasn't over when he tried the Forsey to Rhode pass.

"If you want to be a winner, you play hard and smart and have fun for 60 minutes," Hawkins said.

"They have a very explosive team and can come back, but my only focus was on our team to finish the game and not have water in the gas and keep going for 60 minutes."

Hale Irwin emerged from a four-way tie for first place after two rounds to win the Turtle Bay Championship yesterday.

Unlucky 18th hole keeps
Mast out of playoff

By Paul Arnett

Dick Mast knew he needed a win, not just a big paycheck, to keep from having to go back to qualifying school.

During yesterday's final round of the Turtle Bay Championship, the 51-year-old held the lead for six holes, before back-to-back bogeys dropped him into a tie for third behind eventual winner Hale Irwin and Gary McCord.

Still, coming up the 18th, Mast had a chance to draw even with the talented twosome. He had a wonderful drive, only to see his second shot hit the rocks that line the water in front of the green and ricochet right into the rough.

"I was over somewhere not a lot of golfers expect to be," Mast said of his third shot.

He knocked it to within 18 feet of the hole, only to watch the birdie putt twist right of the hole.

"I didn't hit it high enough up on that slope of the green," Mast said.

He settled for par and a tie for third with John Bland and Mike Smith. The $90,000 paycheck that accompanies that finish moves him near the top 40 money winners this year, but is still 10 spots shy of an automatic exemption for 2003.

"I can't complain," Mast said. "I kind of lived in the rough for about 11 holes, but really stayed in there with some good shots. I putted just great, then I three-putted two in a row from about 30 feet (for bogeys on Nos. 13 and 14).

"The speed was difficult because the greens were drying out. Some were a little quicker. Some were still on the slow side. A little nervy maybe. But I had a chance coming in and I was happy. I hit the second shot at 18 right like I thought I should, but a gust of wind did something there and knocked it out of the air. I was fortunate it didn't go into the water."

Gilder falters: After shooting 32 on the back nine Saturday and another 32 on the front side yesterday, Bob Gilder was suddenly 8-under and only one shot in back of Mast. But then the wheels fell off for the 2001 Senior PGA Tour Rookie of the Year.

He bogeyed three of the final four holes coming in for a woeful 41 on the back nine to finish at 1-over 73 for the round. Gilder tied for 11th with a 3-under 213, but lost any chance of overtaking Irwin for the Charles Schwab Cup. Still, with four Senior Tour victories in 2002, Gilder has a shot to win player of the year.

"I didn't play very well on the back side," Gilder said. "I got a couple of bad breaks and a couple of bad lies. But that's no excuse. I could have handled them better. I don't know, I kind of lost my rhythm out there and played a bad back side."

Local ties: Steve Veriato went out on a high note yesterday with an eagle on the final hole. The Hilo-born golfer, who now resides in Buda, Texas, sank a 15-footer on the par-5 539-yard 18th.

The putt was worth about $25,000 after moving him up the leader board. He finished in a tie for sixth with a three-day total of 210. The 6-under-par effort was two shots off the winning pace set by Irwin. It was the 56-year-old's best finish of the season.

He tied for seventh at the RJR Championship on Sept. 15 to earn a paycheck of $51,200. He pocketed $54,000 this week to move into the top 60 on the money list. The top 31 finishers earn a full exemption.

Larry Stubblefield struggled a bit over the last 18 holes. He fired a final-round 78 for a three-day total of 225. The 9-over-par effort earned him $3,150. Fellow Oahu Country Club member Dave Eichelberger finished one stroke better overall. He earned $3,525 and is still among the top 31 money winners this year.

Cameras don't blink: It was reported in yesterday's paper that Steve Stull and R.W. Eaks weren't on CNBC-TV when they managed two eagles to finish up an otherwise inauspicious second round.

Not so, according to CNBC commentator Mark Rohlfing.

"We were still on the air," Rohlfing said. "I even mentioned how Eaks' shot put him back into the tournament."

Stull and Eaks led after the first round. Eaks finished tied for 18th with a final-round 74. Stull had a 79 and was tied for 35th.

Off the green: Walter Morgan was disqualified following his round for returning a scorecard without two signatures. ... Chi Chi Rodriguez withdrew from the event after becoming ill at the 11th hole. ... Yesterday's playoff was the third in tournament history and first since Bob Charles defeated Dave Stockton in overtime at the 1995 Kaanapali Classic. ... Isao Aoki finished among the top 10 at Turtle Bay for a second consecutive season. The 60-year-old tied for seventh last year and finished in a tie for sixth this season. ... The Palmer Course played to a stroke average of 73.461, just slightly more difficult than it played last year (73,254). For the second straight year, the most difficult hole was the par-4 11th. There were only 11 birdies. The stroke average was 4.297. The easiest hole was the par-5 ninth. There were three eagles and 73 birdies for a stroke average of 4.776.

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