By Paul Honda
When the aerial circus of Campbell descends on Kailua’s ground attack tonight, there will be at least one standout on the field who has scored 10 touchdowns.
And his name isn’t Samson Anguay.
Kailua running back Clinton Aina’s steady, consistent season looks downright spectacular from a numbers perspective. The Kailua-Campbell matchup is the lone Oahu Interscholastic Association playoff matchup tonight.
Here’s a look at today’s games.
Campbell at Kailua
Aina finished the regular season with 647 rushing yards (9.5 yards per carry) and 10 touchdowns. That ranks Aina second in yardage and first in touchdowns by a wide margin. An improving offense was a reason why the loss of stud linebacker Calen Friel to a midseason knee injury didn’t stop the Surfriders (3-5, 2-4 OIA Red East) from eking out a playoff berth.
Campbell’s run-and-shoot offense has been up and down; Mike Ulufale threw four touchdowns and five interceptions in league play. Anguay, who has committed to play for UH, ranks second in the Red West in receiving yardage and sixth in rushing, scoring six touchdowns.
As for styles, the Sabers (3-5, 2-4 OIA Red West) fared better against a good passing team, losing 29-26 to Leilehua, than a good rushing team like Waianae, which beat Campbell 27-0.
Other top rushers have racked up big numbers on Campbell. Farrington’s Harry Tuimaseve had 172 yards and Waipahu’s Victor Moananu had 147 yards. Yet, no running back has rushed for more than 100 yards against Campbell in the past three games.
Aina will see a lot of Tyson Tynanes-Perez, a linebacker who is also a wrestling champion. Tynanes-Perez racked up 16 tackles in the loss to Kapolei.
No. 4 Saint Louis vs. No. 10 Punahou, Aloha Stadium
This is essentially an elimination game for the two teams trailing Kamehameha in the ILH D-I standings.
Saint Louis (6-2, 3-2) was riding atop the league until a 23-21 loss to Punahou four weeks ago. The Buffanblu (3-4, 3-2) turned to a run-heavy attack — 27 carries for 108 yards — in a drastic change from their usual pass-oriented approach.
Saint Louis has stuck with its run-and-shoot through thick and thin, gaining momentum with last week’s 28-0 win over ‘Iolani. Jeremy Higgins ranks second in the league in passing yardage (1,137 yards) and is tied for second in touchdown passes (11).
No. 7 ‘Iolani vs. Pac-Five, Aloha Stadium
The Wolfpack (5-3, 2-3) could shake up the ILH Division II race with a win over the Raiders.
Quarterback P.J. Minaya leads the league with 1,352 yards and 12 touchdown passes, but receiver Everett Kim is done for the season after suffering a fractured jaw and grade-three concussion against Kamehameha last week.
Kim, who ranks fourth in receiving yardage, had already been filling in for injured senior Darin Kamealoha. Minaya still has London Amorin (33 catches, 558 yards), the league’s leader in receiving yardage.
‘Iolani (7-2, 5-1) won the first meeting with Pac-Five 31-3 four weeks ago in a game that was 10-3 at the half. The Raiders offense was truly balanced that night with 25 pass attempts and 25 rushes.
Anuenue vs. Kalani, Kaiser Stadium
The two East Honolulu teams are out of the playoff picture, but the Falcons (0-8) have a large junior class that would gain some confidence for next season by beating Anuenue (2-6, 1-6).
Na Koa have been competitive in nearly every contest despite having one of the state’s smallest enrollments and no regulation home field to practice on.
Lahainaluna at King Kekaulike
A win by King Kekaulike (5-2, 4-1 MIL) would keep it in first place of the D-I division. It’ll be tough against the Lunas (3-3, 2-3), which beat King Kekaulike 26-14 five weeks ago.
Ka‘u at Hawaii Prep
Ka Makani (6-0, 4-0 BIIF) are the only remaining unbeaten team in the league, and with Kohala and Kamehameha-Hawaii struggling, HPA could run the table without much resistance.
HPA won its nonconference games with Honokaa and Waimea, while Ka‘u is winless so far.
Kohala at Kamehameha-Hawaii
The second round brings renewed hope for both teams. The Warriors struggled early, shut out by Division I squads Kapolei and Waiakea in nonconference matchups, and then blanked by Hawaii Prep. They’ve won three in a row since, though.
Kohala (1-4) lost to KS-Hawaii 31-12 in the first round.