Saying Pac-Five is a passing team is an understatement.
The Wolfpack football team heaves the ball over and over again. Why not? When you play against the behemoths on the defensive sevens of the ILH Division I superpowers, you just, flatly, are not going to be able to mount a running game.
So, it’s pass, pass, pass for Pac-Five sophomore quarterback Kainoa Ferreira. He lit up the Halawa sky with 65 attempts in a 60-13 loss to Saint Louis on Friday night at Aloha Stadium, completing 30 of them.
It was a gunslinging duel between Ferreira and Crusaders sophomore Tua Tagovailoa, who combined to throw for 751 yards.
But that wasn’t the last of the aerial assault. Ryder Kuhns, the Saint Louis veteran, mopped up in the final stages of the game by throwing for another 60 yards, bringing the total to 811.
One for the record books, maybe? We’ve got all sorts of engines to determine this stuff at hawaiiprepworld.com. Time to rev them up. Sounds like worldwide leader stuff, but on a smaller scale. No?
Imagine if Pac-Five backup quarterback Ryan Johnson completed any of his four passes near the end of the game? More yards.
Two receivers came up big in the Wolfpack’s loss to the Crusaders. The athletic Tsubasa Brennan, who looks a bit smaller than his 6-foot-1, 170-pound frame, made 14 receptions for 119 yards. Sean Kinel caught six passes for 116 yards. They accounted for 235 of Ferreira’s 311 passing yards.
Ferreira is already over 1,000 passing yards for the season (1,099) and could reach the 2,000-yard mark, with at least five games to go. He set the Oahu passing yards record with 515 yards against King Kekaulike on Maui last month and finished with six touchdown passes in a 54-37 win.
Brennan, a senior, is on his way to a huge year, too, with 555 receiving yards and seven TDs already.
If you are a Pac-Five opponent coming up, don’t take its running game lightly. Christian Vasconcellos, who is listed as a fullback, packs a wallop with his sturdy 5-7, 168-pound chassis.
Vasconcellos gained 43 tough yards on 10 carries against the Crusaders.
Keawe Tong recovered a fumble for the Wolfpack, but it was hard for other Pac-Five defenders to shine. Tagovailoa and Kuhns combined for exactly 500 yards, and “exact” is just about the perfect word to describe the Saint Louis passing attack. This, my friends, is the run-and-shoot, pure and from the original source.
Sure, the Crusaders stumbled against what one opposing fan called a “murderous” schedule with three straight losses to state and national powerhouses, but watch that offense in motion and you will see the way it was drawn up on the blackboard originally by Mouse Davis and disciples June Jones et al.
Maybe others have updated it, and improved upon it. Mililani, perhaps, but surely this is analogous to the original blues compared to rock and roll. Rock and roll, for many in this country for more than a half-century, is where it’s at. Right? But even rock and roll gave up on some of its originality when it veered off from its roots with its new and catchy and a little bit dangerous late ’50s sound, and all of a sudden, everybody was rocking around the clock, for good or ill, instead of singing the blues, which itself has been characterized as the in-step vibe and sound of the emancipation of the slaves.
But we were talking about Pac-Five, right? The schedule for the Wolfpack (2-1, 1-1 ILH) remains stiff for the next three weeks, when they face perennial D-II power ‘Iolani, followed by games against defending state Division I champion Punahou and ILH D-I contender Kamehameha.
That stiff competition just might get Pac-Five ready for its season finale on Oct. 10 against Damien and beyond.
For sure, the Wolfpack will be “passing” the time away, trying for good seeding in the ILH D-II playoffs, which starts Oct. 18. They’re not alone in striving for the ultimate prize that will be up for grabs at the state tournament in November.