Kahuku’s 63-0 shutout of Leilehua on Friday in the quarterfinals of the OIA Division I playoffs wasn’t enough to move up in the latest USA Today Super 25 national rankings.
The Red Raiders (8-1) remained at No. 22 in the nation with every ranked team winning for the second week in a row.
Kahuku was especially impressive, notching its fifth shutout of the season and 11th over the last two years under head coach Vavae Tata. The 11 shutouts in back-to-back seasons matches the 11 Kahuku had in 2004 and ’05, when it shut out eight teams in 2005 alone on the way to one of its eight state titles.
Senior Kekaula Kaniho returned an interception for a TD against the Mules. Kahuku’s defense has scored (nine) more than twice as many touchdowns as it has given up (four) against OIA competition.
Stokes Nihipali-Botelho returned a punt 64 yards for a touchdown and now has eight TDs (four kickoffs, two punts, two interceptions) this season.
Bishop Gorman (Nev.), which beat Kahuku 35-7 this season in Las Vegas, allowed only one first down the entire game in its win on Friday to improve to 8-0 and remain No. 1 in the rankings.
The Red Raiders will face Waianae in the semifinals of the OIA playoffs on Saturday at Aloha Stadium. Kahuku shut out the Seariders 28-0 earlier this season.