SSince a shutout loss to Maui, Baldwin has scored at least 30 points every night out in a six-game win streak, including last week’s 56-7 rout of Maui in the MIL D-I championship game. The Bears ran the ball more than 71 percent of the time in the title game, but also limited the Sabers to 170 yards of total offense.
Cruise Ah Chan (6-2, 225) anchors the offensive line and Kamaki Gouveia (5-9, 170) leads the ball-carrying corps. Former QB Jonovan-Taje Akaka, current quarterback Chayce Akaka’s brother, has been a steady contributor as a DB and WR.
Bringing the Bears back to the throne hasn’t been easy. After years of establishing and maintaining a dynasty in the MIL, they hadn’t been quite the same since Keelan Ewaliko, now with the University of Hawaii, was a breathtaking playmaker at quarterback.
The haymaking numbers produced by the run-and-shoot attack in the years of QB Jordan Helle and then-coach Chad Kauhaahaa may never be approached again. But the Bears are making do with tough defense — not entirely different from the Maui squad that represented the MIL last fall.
Baldwin has allowed just 55 points during the six-game win streak, but its defense will be tested by an explosive Waianae offense. The Bears’ offense will have a stiff challenge from a battle-tested Waianae defense. The Seariders saw everything from smashmouth football (Kahuku) to aerial bomb squads (Mililani).