You probably could hear the collective gasp in the press box by Hawaii scribes Joe Anzivino and Bill Kim.
On this date in 1945, Roosevelt coach Neil “Cocky” Donahue spit in the face of conventional wisdom and ordered his quarterback to throw the ball despite a 13-7 lead with less than five minutes to play.
Both sportswriters blasted the decision after Peter Wilson picked off Roy Rosa‘s pass to give the Buffanblu the ball at Roosevelt’s 11-yard line. Wilson scored on a reverse with 3 1/2 minutes left but Allen Kam‘s kick was blocked to leave the score knotted.
Punahou nearly had another pick when Jim Dwight let John Park‘s pass slip through his fingers. The Buffanblu immediately put Tom Carpenter in at Dwight’s spot and Carpenter showed his mate how it was done.
Carpenter picked off Park’s next pass and raced 66 yards to paydirt for the victory with 35 seconds left. Carpenter beat Iolani with an 88-yard run the previous week.
Punahou won the game despite earning only three first downs to Roosevelt’s 10 and the Buffanblu didn’t connect on any of its four pass plays. Roosevelt quarterbacks went 4-for-14 for 52 yards.