By Paul Honda
This wasn’t the prettiest of Farrington’s wins, but they Governors are happy just the same.
None more than Charles Tauaefa. The 5-foot-9, 210-pound junior linebacker had six tackles, blocked a punt and recovered a fumble for a touchdown in Saturday’s 42-26 win over Castle.
The Govs sealed a state-tournament berth with the win at breezy Kaiser Stadium, using a their patented recipe for success: physical, punishing defense and a steady, run-first offense.
While the Govs racked up five sacks of Castle quarterback Jaymason Lee, the secondary came up with two picks. One was returned by Alvin Faamausili for a touchdown at a pivotal point in the game, opening a 15-point lead in the final quarter.
Lee finished with 275 passing yards (28-for-45) and three touchdowns, including one in the final 10 seconds.
“The way they fought against Kahuku, we were concerned,” Farrington coach Randall Okimoto said. “They did a better job with pass protection.”
Five sacks wasn’t enough?
“A team like this, you need eight,” he added.”
Kehano was covered tight in the early going, but eventually finished with 11 receptions for 150 yards, including two touchdowns. One came on a 38-yard screen play. In the clutch, Faamausili came through.
“Alvin made a big play. That’s what we needed,” Okimoto said. “Now we have new life, an opportunity to play in the big one.”
Farrington’s offensive line, the “Bamboolas”, worked hard in the trenches, paving the way for Harry Tuimaseve (178 yards, 36 carries).
“Tuimaseve is such a physical running back behind a very good offensive line,” Maeda said. “They mix it up just enough to keep you honest.”
Mixing is one way to look at it. Farrington didn’t complete a pass all night.
“They grinded it out and ate up lots of time,” Maeda said.
Castle’s defense allowed only one run of more than 10 yards all night. Linebacker Cy Pana had 10 tackles, including a sack, and blocked a punt. Kehano was in on 11 tackles and also pulled punt and kickoff return duties.
Defensive back Jacob Martin, a sophomore, had nine tackles, including a sack. Ryan Ramirez had six tackles.
Three players were ejected from the game, including two from Farrington. One of them was ironman linebacker/running back Garrett Paredes of Castle, who had four tackles, four receptions (for 25 yards) and provided extra pass protection for Lee.
Now, Farrington prepares for a rare neighbor-island road trip. The Governors will play Honokaa on Nov. 20 at Kealakehe’s field.