Saturday’s Open Division championship game in the First Hawaiian Bank/HHSAA Football State Championship will pit No. 1 Saint Louis and No. 2 Kahuku in a battle between the top two teams in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser Football Top 10.
Since the debut of the Star-Advertiser rankings in 2010, there have been 15 meetings between the No. 1 and No. 2 teams in the state. The No. 1 team is 9-6 in those meetings.
TEAM RECORDS IN THESE GAMES:
Saint Louis (3-3)
Here’s a look at all 15 games:
No. 2 Saint Louis 30, No. 1 Kahuku 14
>> Kahuku failed to score a touchdown on either special teams or defense for the first time all year against a Hawaii opponent as Saint Louis quarterback Tua Tagovailoa broke Timmy Chang‘s career passing mark in the win. Tagovailoa’s “Heisman moment” came when he ran for a 30-yard touchdown to put the Crusaders up two possessions late in the fourth quarter. Kahuku had the ball at the Saint Louis 1 but fumbled at the goal line and Saint Louis’ Isaiah Tufaga recovered it in the end zone. The Crusaders shut out Kahuku 17-0 in the second half.
No. 2 Kahuku 39, No. 1 Saint Louis 14
>> Kahuku gave up a 15-yard penalty to start the game doing the haka at midfield while glaring at the Saint Louis sideline. The Crusaders scored on a blocked punt return for a touchdown before giving up 39 of the next 46 points. The 14 points were a season-low by the Crusaders, who fumbled on offense the first two times Kahuku put a hit on a Saint Louis player. Kahuku DB Keala Santiago had one of the Red Raiders’ three interceptions on defense and had seven picks in his final four games. Saint Louis was held to 139 total yards. Kahuku QB Kesi Ah-Hoy carried the ball 30 times for 103 yards and three touchdowns and also threw a 27-yard TD to Pua Falemalu.
No. 2 Saint Louis 30, No. 1 Punahou 14
>> The rematch wasn’t quite as memorable as the double-overtime game played a month earlier. Punahou led 14-0 before Drew Kobayashi‘s 97-yard touchdown reception from QB Tua Tagovailoa jumpstarted 30 unanswered points by the Crusaders. Saint Louis forced six turnovers as Punahou RB Wayne Taulapapa, who rushed for 92 yards two touchdowns, fumbled three times and QB Ephraim Tuliloa was picked off three times. Tagovailoa, who didn’t start the game due to injury, finished 17-for-28 for 318 yards and three touchdowns (one rush).
No. 2 Punahou 51, No. 1 Saint Louis 45, 2 OT
>> It doesn’t really get much better than this. The first of three meetings between the two schools this season ended when Wayne Taulapapa‘s fourth touchdown run of the game served as a walk-off in double overtime. Punahou never led until the end of the game. Nick Kapule, subbing for injured starter Ephraim Tuliloa, was 26-for-36 for 336 yards and three touchdowns. Saint Louis QB Tua Tagovailoa, who was 21-for-38 for 346 yards and a touchdown, injured his calf in the second quarter. LB Laakea Look intercepted Tagovailoa in the second overtime period to set up Taulapapa’s winning score.
No. 2 Mililani 53, No. 1 Punahou 45
>> The Buffanblu had been ranked No. 1 for 28 consecutive weeks going all the way back to Week 3 of the 2013 season. The Trojans had been ranked No. 2 for 22 consecutive weeks going back to Week 8 in 2013. This was the game fans were clamoring for all season after the Buffanblu defeated the Trojans 28-22 in the 2013 state final. Mililani QB McKenzie Milton threw for 421 yards and seven touchdowns against a team that was allowing 10.0 points per game the entire season coming in. The Trojans led 26-7 in the first quarter before Punahou made its charge with RB Wayne Taulapapa leading the way. Taulapapa rushed for 260 yards and three touchdowns but his fumble in the final minute allowed the Trojans to run out the clock and claim their first state championship.
No. 1 Punahou 28, No. 2 Mililani 22
>> Punahou started the year with a win over the Trojans at John Kauinana Stadium and ended it with a win over Mililani to claim its second state title and wrap up a perfect 11-0 season. The Buffanblu had lost to Kahuku in the previous two state finals but held on behind senior QB Larry Tuileta, who threw for 265 yards and three touchdowns. Mililani WR Kainoa Wilson threw two touchdown passes on trick plays to make it a six-point game but Punahou’s Joseph Augafa sealed the win with an interception. Mililani RB Vavae Malepeai was the state’s leading rusher but was held to 33 yards on 16 carries by a very stout Buffanblu defense. Mililani’s only two losses of the season were to the Buffanblu.
No. 1 Punahou 24, No. 2 Kamehameha 0
>> Punahou took over the top spot weeks earlier when preseason No. 1 Saint Louis lost to the Warriors, who rose to second in the polls. This game was dominated by the Buffanblu defense and special teams. Punahou held Kamehameha to 166 total yards with 80 coming on the final drive after the game was out of reach. Punahou got the shutout after stopping Kamehameha three times from the 1-yard line in the final minute. RB Wayne Taulapapa rushed for two touchdowns and Boyd Chung, Saitui Moe’ai and Canton Kaumatule all had sacks for the Buffanblu.
No. 1 Kahuku 42, No. 2 Punahou 20
>> The Red Raiders won their second consecutive state title behind RB Aofaga Wily, who rushed for 188 yards and three touchdowns. Lasselle Thompson and Kawehena Johnson caught touchdown passes from Viliami Livai to build a 21-0 halftime lead. Punahou rallied with two touchdowns in the third quarter before Kahuku scored the next 21 points to pull away for the win. Ryan Tuiasoa, who played linebacker the previous season for Punahou, rushed for 118 yards and two touchdowns in the loss.
No. 1 Kahuku 31, No. 2 Farrington 6
>> This game was dominated by Kahuku DB Kawehena Johnson, who finished with nine tackles, two touchdowns, an interception and a forced fumble. Johnson forced the fumble on Farrington’s first play from scrimmage and returned an interception for a touchdown to end the Govs’ second drive. Johnson also scored on a 16-yard touchdown pass from QB Viliami Livai. Kahuku led 31-0 before the Govs scored their only touchdown against the backups in the fourth quarter.
No. 1 Kahuku 21, No. 2 Punahou 13
>> Punahou made a rare trip to the North Shore in this early-season clash and nearly pulled out the win. Punahou led 13-0 at halftime on a Ryan Tuiasoa touchdown run and a touchdown pass from Larry Tuileta to Kanawai Noa. Kahuku RB Aofaga Wily took over in the second half scored on three different touchdown runs. Wily finished with what turned out to be a career-high 225 yards on 28 carries while the Red Raiders defense held Punahou to negative yards rushing.
No. 1 Kahuku 30, No. 2 Punahou 24
>> Kahuku won the first of two straight state titles after having to forfeit all of its wins in 2010 following the use of an ineligible player. RB Aofaga Wily rushed for 180 yards and a touchdown while going up against a Punahou defensed led by current UCLA linebacker Isaac Savaiinaea, who had 14 tackles, and current Oregon defensive lineman DeForest Buckner, who had eight tackles. Punahou QB Larry Tuileta threw two fourth-quarter touchdowns to Steven Lakalaka but the difference was a 30-yard touchdown run by Kahuku’s Mahonilai Fakatou, who also caught a TD pass.
No. 2 Kahuku 23, No. 1 Farrington 0
>> Kahuku earned revenge for a midseason loss to the Govs with another dominant defensive performance. Kahuku held Farrington RB Tyler Taumua, the state’s leading rusher, to only 19 yards on 11 carries. DB Bronson Beatty had two interceptions and Kahuku held the Govs to 124 total yards. The game was 3-0 at halftime before Kahuku pulled away with two 1-yard TD runs and an 18-yard TD pass from Viliami Livai to Spencer Nagy.
No. 2 Farrington 14, No. 1 Kahuku 13
>> Kahuku had been No. 1 in 19 of the first 24 weeks of the Star-Advertiser poll and had beaten Farrington in 16 of the previous 17 meetings. That all changed on this day as the Govs won a game decided by a missed extra point. Setefano Lavatai sealed the game with an interception with 20 seconds remaining for Farrington, which got 100 rushing yards from RB Tyler Taumua on 24 carries. Kahuku DB Kawehena Johnson accounted for both Red Raiders touchdowns, scoring on a 92-yard interception return and a 3-yard run.
No. 1 Saint Louis 36, No. 2 Waianae 13
>> The anticipated rematch between Saint Louis and Kahuku from earlier in the season never materialized after Kahuku was forced out of the state tournament after forfeiting all of its games. QB Marcus Mariota faced a Waianae team that finished below .500 in the final and was 17-for-23 for 230 yards and three touchdowns. Jaylen Mitchell returned a kickoff 94 yards for a touchdown for Waianae to make it 23-13 but the Seariders didn’t score again. Future Texas A&M receiver Jeremy Tabuyo caught a 79-yard touchdown pass from Mariota. DB Leland Gomez had two of the Crusaders’ three interceptions on defense.
No. 1 Kahuku 49, No. 2 Saint Louis 27
>> This is the only time Saint Louis played at Carlton Weimer Field on the North Shore and was the only loss as a starter for Saint Louis QB Marcus Mariota. Ben Mamea and Tigi Hill blocked punts for the Red Raiders, who only led 21-20 at halftime. Kahuku scored the next four touchdowns as QB Evan Moe was an efficient 9-for-13 for 166 yards. Kahuku RB Tyrone Brown rushed for 84 yards and three touchdowns on only nine carries. Mariota finished 25-for-43 for 277 yards and a touchdown with one interception and also ran for 82 yards and a touchdown.