KEAAU — Kamehameha-Hawaii looked like a different team after halftime, locking down on defense and exploding on offense to repel Hawaii Prep to hold a share of first place.
The Warriors scored 21 unanswered points in the second half to storm past Ka Makai 24-6 in a Big Island Interscholastic Federation Division II game Friday night at Paiea Stadium.
Kamehameha (3-0 BIIF, 6-0 overall) couldn’t muster much of a passing offense in the first half, going 2-for-7 for minus-7 yards. Then Brandon Howes started the second half at quarterback and made the most of his opportunity.
HPA (2-1, 2-3) seemed to be in control in a first half that was a defensive struggle for both teams, each trying with moderate success to run the other over.
The Warriors took a 3-0 lead on a 36-yard field goal by Logan Uyetake, set up by Ina Teofilo’s burst up the middle for 46 yards.
That was most of Kamehameha’s offense in the first half. The rushing attack went pretty much nowhere, carrying 17 times for 83 yards, a deceptive 4.8-yard per rush average. Teofilo had 69 yards on 10 carries, but he was held in check after his big run.
The Warriors opened their first series with a wildcat offense, featuring Shaun Kagawa at quarterback. He was 2 of 3 for minus-7 yards in passing. He ran four times for 21 yards. Micah Kanehailua went 0-for-4.
Meanwhile, HPA went three-and-out on its first series, then started moving the ball behind Bobby Lum, who bulldozed for 77 yards on 15 carries in the first half.
In the second quarter, Koa Ellis threw a 24-yard strike to Kellen Gillens to hand Ka Makani a red-zone opportunity. Three plays later, they duo hooked up again for an 11-yard TD reception, giving HPA a 6-3 lead after the PAT failed.
Then the second half kicked off, and the Warriors accumulated big play after big play, starting with Adri Castro’s second fumble recovery on a botched Ka Makani punt return.
Five plays later, Howes, who was 3-for-3 for 26 yards in the second half, fired a 10-yard touchdown pass to Castro for a 10-6 lead.
In the fourth quarter, on Kamehameha’s first play from its 37, Kagawa was trapped in the backfield, spun out of trouble and raced down the sideline for a 63-yard touchdown and a 17-6 lead.
Kagawa finished with 97 yards on eight carries. Teofilo led the way with 114 yards on 22 attempts.
Bobby Lum mauled his way for 133 yards on 22 carries. Ellis completed 10 of 18 passes for 96 yards.
Late in the fourth quarter, Lum fumbled a punt at the HPA 2. The ball rolled into the end zone, where Kamehameha’s Timmy Burke fell on it for a touchdown, making it 24-6 with 4:41 left.
He was part of an all-around defensive effort. Burke had two tackles for loss, Castro had two fumble recoveries and Kama Vincent had a pair of sacks.
In the junior varsity, it was Kamehameha 40, Waiakea 0.
HPA 0 6 0 0 — 6
Kamehameha 3 0 7 14 — 24
Kam — FG 36 Logan Uyetake, 3:18
HPA — Michael Nakahara 11 pass from Koa Ellis (kick failed), 10:16
Kam — Adri Castro 10 pass from Brandon Howes (Uyetake kick), 33.7
HPA — Fourth quarter
Kam — Shaun Kagawa 63 run (Uyetake kick), 10:54
Kam — Timmy Burke fumble recovery end zone (Uyetake kick), 4:40